Nipping those early workplace pension snags in the bud

Kevin Martin, our Group Director of Customer Services, shares some top tips for employers and payroll professionals new to workplace pensions.

Auto-enrolment has changed the pensions landscape for employers and payroll professionals submitting their employee data. Over the last few years, they’ve had to handle a lot:

  • The first auto-enrolment staging cycle
  • Contribution increases
  • Re-enrolling workers who’ve previously opted out

For every data file uploaded to The People’s Pension, there are very few exceptions that fall out of the automated process – with only 0.075% requiring an intervention to correct.

At a glance, this might not seem like much, but when you look at the number of contribution files submitted, even a small percentage of exceptions can interrupt the smooth and frictionless process of file uploads. And so precious time is spent getting help to fix these issues.

In fact, many of the data file issues we see concern re-enrolment and situations where there’s a communications gap between workers and employers. In other words, a proportion of the 7-8% of workers who say they don’t want to be in their workplace pension get swept back in without knowing. This can be a problem – not only for the employees who’ve unexpectedly been enrolled and start to lose 5% of their take-home pay – but also for employers who rely on their employees to keep their personal details up to date.

The solution? Communication

By employers communicating to their employees at the right time, their employees can make informed decisions about their money and financial future. For example, we work closely with our employers to help them understand their duties and ensure that re-enrolled workers get their joiner information in good time.

Our website has a wealth of material to help members, employers, and payroll professionals, but below are my top 3 tips to help with getting to grips with workplace pensions in the first few months.

3 top tips for keeping your workplace pension on track

  1. Bridge that communications gap with employees – Our communications toolkit can help by sharing key information with employees at the right time. It could also lead to fewer queries being asked by employees as they’ll know where to go to find answers. 
  2. Know your duties – The Pensions Regulator’s website can help with understanding your employer duties, including which employees you’ll need to enrol (or re-enrol).
  3. Focus on getting good data into the system – You may be able to automate your contribution submissions by linking your account with your payroll and pension provider. This could save time with manual uploads through seamless, secure transfer of data and leave less room for errors.

Discover more

Visit our communications toolkit or contact us on 01293 586666 if you have any questions.