The Pensions Regulator has published over 250 pages of notes to help employers comply with their new responsibilities, which in essence breaks down into 33 new pension responsibilities for each employer!
To make life a little easier, we have broken them down into 5 main areas – here is an overview of your main duties:
- Categorise your workers. You may think everyone should be included in auto-enrolment, but it’s not that simple.
- Communications. There are a number of different communications you need to send to different categories of worker at different points in time.
- Keep detailed records of opt-ins and opt-outs.
o Employees can opt-out
o Employees who aren’t eligible now
o May become eligible
o Opted out employees may change their mind.
Detailed records relating to all this movement must be maintained and updated at all times.
- Manage your payroll. Your payroll system will need to ensure the correct contributions are payable for each employee every time the payroll is run (see FAQ’s to see how much you will need to contribute).
- Choose a pension plan. You’re also expected to select a pension plan and take decisions about which investment choices to offer your employees – decisions that are usually only taken by pension professionals with many years’ experience.
There has been lots of discussion around how auto-enrolment will affect employees and debate around whether employers are ready. The truth of the matter is this –there are significant costs and time pressures facing businesses in rising to the challenge of implementing auto enrolment, and with fines for non-compliance, businesses will also pay the price for getting it wrong (see fines in FAQ’s).
For businesses that haven’t yet staged, auto-enrolment is fast approaching. It’s no longer that bridge in the distance. This is something you have to deal with now but with the right help and support, it doesn’t have to be a big obstacle to cross.