After getting ready for client communications back in November our anonymous accountant got distracted with Christmas and the January SA rush so put AE comms on the back burner.
It’s still on his to-do list going forward this month; however, during this time he did make a decision on which AE solution to go with.
In the latest article in AccountingWEB's ‘AE journey’ content series, our accountant runs through the selection process and how he found a solution.
For running the administration side of auto enrolment, he said is going to be using BrightPay.
He explained how he came to the decision:
“I’ve been following them on Twitter and they’ve been doing a lot of posting about auto enrolment. I wasn’t really happy with the two payroll systems I use at the moment. I use Xero in some cases because I wanted to see what that was like, and I also use MyPAYE.
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“At the moment I don’t really have enough faith in Xero’s payroll to go down that route and hope it works for AE. With MyPAYE, I think it’s really good but everything feels a bit all over the place. With BrightPay it is one piece of software, all your companies in one place. They’ve made a big deal they’re AE-ready,” he said.
The accountant said how easy it was to pass payroll information in BrightPay on to your pension provider and how it takes care of a lot of the administration work for you.
“It checks the auto enrolment dates, it checks if people are eligible to opt in, and helps you produce the letters so it takes care of all the admin basically, which is what I’m looking for.”
When it comes to price, BrightPay is a desktop software model, not Software as a Service, so it’s a case of buying a standard licence for the year.
“I think it’s £199 for a bureau - that’s unlimited employers and employees. Whereas when you’re looking at some of the solutions are charging £50-60 SaaS for AE it kind of made sense really,” he added. “I’ve not started using it yet and won’t until April, and a lot of my clients won’t be staging until 2017, but I want to start communicating with them.”
The accountant was also keen on the pre-assessment tool. “You load all your clients on, load their staff on and start running their payroll, and it takes you through the process of getting them staged, all the letters to send out to them and you can get the ball rolling now.”
Keep a look out for the next instalment in his AE journey.
AccountingWEB has launched the No-one gets left behind campaign to alert as many accountants as possible to the obligations implied by auto enrolment. Read our simple eight-point statement which sets out the auto enrolment facts you need to know.
About Robert Lovell
Business and finance journalist