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April 2016 employee changes – auto-enrolment

April 6, 2016

Beans auto-enrolment and payroll guru David Rodick answered questions during a recent in-house workshop that focused on the big changes and initiatives in 2016 around employing staff. Given the number of questions we have had from our clients about these changes we thought it would be useful to share them with you.

Is auto-enrolment complicated?

No it’s very straightforward when organised properly. In short, the government are making it mandatory for employers to enrol staff in a work place pension in order to encourage provision to be made for future pension payments. There is some upfront administration, Beans have an ‘A’ team handling the upfront admin and a brilliant new payroll software package that handles the pension process once it’s in place. It’s easy and we only charge £300 for the set up, a fraction of our competitors.

What about eligibility for auto-enrolment?

We keep that really simple as well. Our new Brightpay software does all of the eligibility checking as part of our implementation package. The system produces the letters for staff and combined with the information pack the employee receives from the Nest pension provider, your staff are fully armed to make their decision about opting in or out. We even have our trusted partner Ray Webb who will come along and brief your staff if you wish as an extra service.

So what’s your message to employers?

Beans can help you implement the process at a really competitive cost. We don’t even need to be currently doing your payroll. We know what we are doing and it’s part of our culture of helping our clients face-to-face and doing the job for a fixed price with no hidden extras. We can have a no obligation no fee chat with anyone worried about implementing auto-enrolment now or in 2017. But, there is no time like the present so let us get our A team on it!

Anything else happening in the employer world?

Yes, massive changes with the new living wage from 1 April 2016. It’s a great initiative but it costs employers more in the end. £7.20 is the new living wage figure for employees over 25 years of age. Between ages 21 and 24 its £6.70. Why not employ an apprentice where the rate is £3.30. There are some great people on the apprentice schemes and we have used apprentices for 10 years now.

What can employers do to keep costs down?

Stand back and think about your staffing structure. Does it support the business model and could you benefit from a strategy focused on a mix of full and part time staff plus zero hour contracts and apprentices? If you are a Director you should be taking £8,060 out each year from April 2016 in order to keep NI and tax bills to a minimum.

Finally think about productivity, it sounds strange but sometimes a well designed staff incentive scheme can boost productivity and you could end up with big sales increases.

We really value our staff here at Beans and we know the legislation and the tax implications of employing people. Please talk to us about any of the above or anything else. We will be inviting you to our next Crewe and Warrington employer and employee workshops in May to enjoy an overview, Q&A and to meet a few like minded business owners.