Is your small business ready for auto-enrolment?

Since the law on workplace pensions changed in 2012, all employers in the UK are legally obliged to put certain employees into a pension scheme and contribute towards it. This has been called auto-enrolment, and it is being introduced to businesses across the UK in stages. Your staging date will depend on how many employees you have on your payroll.

In the coming year, it is estimated that half a million small businesses will be staged for auto-enrolment. Those missing their implementation deadline will face penalties starting at £400, and rising up to £10,000 for those severely lagging behind.

The process isn’t quick, taking up to eight months. And for smaller businesses with limited resources, it can also be challenging. As such, experts are strongly advising small businesses to prepare early.

The Pensions Regulator has a handy website where you can find out your staging date, check what your legal duties are, and estimate what it will cost you to implement the scheme. Crucially you can also read through their range of guidance and resources to find out exactly what will be required of you to implement the scheme.

After researching the process, you’ll be a good position to decide whether to outsource the project to a financial adviser, accountant or other expert, or whether to tackle it yourself.