The clock is ticking on auto-enrolment, for the majority of small businesses significant deadlines are looming in 2016 and 2017.

Penalties of failing to meet deadlines can be huge and potentially catastrophic for small businesses

Is your business aware of its legal auto enrolment responsibility?

Despite the best attempts of the Pensions Regulator to educate employers, there seem to be a considerable number of business owners who are unaware of their responsibilities

If you’ve not put any thought into how you’ll comply with the workplace pensions legislation, this is now something that should be at the top of your 2016 to-do list!

It’s not yet clear how the pensions regulator will treat small businesses that have failed to address their responsibilities. There are fines and penalties in place for not meeting your assigned staging date, but will there be some type of bedding-in period for small businesses? How strict will the Pensions Regulator be?

There’s a lot of work involved in getting ready for auto enrolment. It means researching and finding a suitable scheme, updating your payroll software to deal with pensions contributions (and the required recordkeeping) and making all your employees aware of the need to contribute to a workplace pension.

So the sooner you start, the more time you’ll have to complete the task – forward planning, as always, being the best course of action.

Have you factored auto enrolment costs into your budget?

Little has been said about the costs facing employers apart from the contributions they are required to make into the workplace pensions. But making contributions into your employees’ pension scheme is only one part of the associated costs.

To begin with, there’s the cost of obtaining professional advice regarding choice of scheme and assistance in being able to register a scheme. You’ll need advice from an independent financial adviser or pensions specialist when choosing a scheme, and your employees will need similar independent advice regarding their choice of investments once a scheme is chosen.

And there are also the payroll admin, HR and communications aspects of maintaining the scheme, all of which can bring additional costs to the table, not to mention the outlay for purchasing updated payroll systems and software.

So now’s the time to start working out those costs and factoring them into your budgeting and planning for the year.

We can help you get your auto enrolment solution in place

My feeling is that the hype surrounding auto enrolment will subside over time. It will become just another part of running a business and the administration of these schemes will be regarded as nothing out of the normal.

But the crucial point is that you should be actively looking to your professional advisers for assistance in meeting your workplace pensions requirements. Don’t forget, supplying a pension scheme for your employees is now a legal requirement, so it’s prudent to get the best possible professional help to meet your staging date on time (and with minimal fuss and bother).

At Vikram Patel Chartered Accountants , we’ve done plenty of research into the market for suitable schemes. And we’ve identified the scheme that offers the best benefits, the easiest implementation and the most cost-effective solution for the smaller business.

We can help you shoulder the auto-enrolment burden, and provide a best-in-class scheme, helpful payroll advice and all the guidance you’ll need to meet your staging date with plenty of time to spare.
If you’d like to talk to us about your auto-enrolment needs, Get in touch now to arrange a meetingvsp