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Plan ahead for auto enrolment success

Auto enrolment began in October 2012, but so far, only the larger employers have reached their staging date - the date they have to comply with the new pensions legislation and enrol their employees into a workplace pension scheme. But, over the next year, more than 40,000 firms who employ fewer than 60 employees will have to ensure they comply with the new legislation and over the coming months, growing numbers of small employers will be affected - see table below:

Staging datePAYE scheme size as at 1 April 2012
January 2015 58
March 2015 54 - 57
April 2015 50 - 53
June 2015 onwards Fewer than 30

Watch this introduction video for more information:

Q&A

How do I find out my staging date?
The Pensions Regulator will write and advise you of your staging date, but you can check it yourself by visiting its website - all you'll need your employer PAYE reference.

When should I start planning?
The longer you give yourself, the easier the transition will be. Often auto enrolment can be left until too late and companies may struggle to find a provider able to accommodate them at very short notice.

Which staff will qualify?
Do you have employees between age 22 and State Pension Age? Do they earn more than 10,000 per year? If so, they're eligible for auto enrolment.

How much will I have to pay?
The minimum employer contributions are 1% of each member's qualifying earnings, increasing to 3% over time.As long as you meet the minimum criteria, you can choose your contribution structure. Your employees will also contribute with a minimum of 1% of their qualifying earnings, increasing to 5% over time.

How can I find a scheme?
Start by determining what you want from a scheme, and then compare offerings, costs and benefits.
Is a traditional group pensions provider appropriate or would one of the companies specialising in the auto enrolment market such as NOW: Pensions be best for you? Different companies have different requirements, for some the cost of implementation and running the scheme will be the most important, whereas for others it might be how well the provider integrates with your existing payroll systems.

Do I have more time?
If you need a bit more time, postponement lets you delay auto enrolment for a period of up to three months. However, it's important to remember that employees can opt in during any postponement period, so you still need to be able to handle these employees from your staging date.

How can Keltic Accounting help?

As Aberdeenshire's prominent auto enrolment specialist, we will:
  • Help you get everything in place well in advance of your staging date;
  • Assess your workforce every week or month as part of your normal payroll; and
  • Upload your information quickly and easily onto the NOW: Pensions system via our own dedicated microsite.

Most of all with us working in partnership with NOW: Pensions, you can rest easy in the knowledge thatwe'll take all the hassle and worry out of auto enrolment for you.

What about all the paperwork?
We've got that covered too! NOW: Pensions will deal with all the employee communications required under the new pensions regulations; whilst Keltic Accounting will keep all your records up to date within our payroll software.

Approaching auto enrolment can feel daunting but working with Aberdeenshire auto enrolment specialists Keltic Accounting and a provider that has in-depth knowledge of the auto enrolment market like NOW: Pensions can ease much of the administrative burden and by starting early you'll avoid a great deal of unnecessary stress.

For more information on auto enrolment feel free to contact us or visit www.nowpensions.com

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