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Auto enrolment data management...2014

17th Jan 2014
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LP Auto Enrolment Solutions are a company who specialise in auto enrolment support for business who are unable or do not wish to deal with their auto enrolment obligations in house.

We have a lot of experience in this area but the reason for writing this message is to ask the many payroll professionals out there what they know about the requests that are going to be made of them over the next 6 months or so?

In April more than 6,000 businesses will reach their staging date. In May an additional 12,000 will do the same. In June there is a break whilst we all catch our breath and then another 12,000 will need to stage in July. It has been said that this year nearly 35,000 businesses will reach their staging date and so based upon these staitsics and assuming they are true this means that the lions share of the companies staging this year will sit in these three months.

We have already been involved in helping a number of the larger companies that staged last year and the over riding issue that has derailed any plans around auto enrolment has not been a pension issue but a data management issue. The vast majority of the data required to deal with auto enrolment sits within the many payroll systems that businesses around the country are using. But it is interesting to talk to many payroll managers once a staging date is near and explain what data is actually required and how they obtain it.

I am no payroll expert but as I have been involved in corporate pension now for more than 20 years I know that in order to assertain someones state pension age, which is needed for assessment purposes each pay refernce period, I need the employees' DOB and their gender, Which payroll system out there records employees gender as a matter of course in order to pay people and how do we extract that in one straightforward .csv file (along with many other details) without causing the payroll manager many hours of additional work and the business concerned an additional considerable invoice?

The more payroll people I talk to the more I hear the sound of pennies dropping and I wanted to get your take on whether this is an issue for you/your clients and indeed how we can get around this going forward. Not only is there a large amount of work needed to be done in a short space of time (wait until next year and it gets worse!) but this is not a one off exercise as this data will need to be supplied at every pay ref period, which could mean weekly.

I am genuinely interested in how the payroll profession will deal with these requests from their clients and from the many auto enrolment companies for data, often at the 11th hour and all at the same time and with the same level of detail repeatedly without first having planned for the tsunami which is around the corner?         

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