Taylor Patterson brings auto enrolment forward 3 years

Taylor Patterson has recently made the decision to fully implement all the new auto enrolment legislation a full three years before they are required to by law.

Chris Bardin, director, said: “Whilst Taylor Patterson has operated a company pension scheme for many years, we decided to bring forward our staging date to further demonstrate our commitment to this market. We provide advice to many local businesses on dealing with the requirements of auto enrolment and so it was an easy decision to bring forward the implementation of this complex legislation.

"It is really important to us that we provide a quality pension scheme for our staff and I’m pleased to say that 100% of our staff are members of our workplace pension.”

Taylor Patteron's top tips for how should an employer prepare for their workplace pension duties:-
  1. Create an action plan Establish your staging date Nominate a dedicated contact Establish what automatic enrolment will cost (from an initial perspective and ongoing) Assess your workforce Establish if your existing scheme is a qualifying scheme Know what business software you use and check its compatibility for payroll data Communicate to workers Set up a qualifying pension scheme
Why did Taylor Patterson decide to implement its workplace pension duties early?

"At the start of the year, we decided we wanted to be proactive and continue to promote the benefits of workplace pensions to our staff. At this time we created an action plan which began with analysing our payroll data. This allowed us to consider the financial impact of contributions on the business, especially in light of the rising contribution levels from October 2017 onwards."

What has Taylor Patterson learned from going through the auto enrolment process?

"There are a number of salary definition methods and the cost review analysis we undertook allowed us not only to consider the costs we may incur, but also how the payroll and HR data systems integrated with our scheme provider. Having undertaken this analysis and considered if a different definition basis was suitable for different categories of employee in the business, we were able to agree and implement an effective contribution strategy."

"It is important to note that the contribution basis and categorisation can be changed at any time in the future, subject to meeting the minimum requirements.

"At outset, we were very keen to ensure that our payroll system was fully compatible with our scheme provider and that our payroll systems were auto enrolment ready. As part of this, we ran a number of ‘test’ uploads ahead of our ‘go live date’ to check that the payroll data was being successfully analysed and uploaded, as this is a key step in the process."

Chris went on further to comment: “We knew the current cost of contributions to the business, however we were keen to know the future costs to our business so we can plan accordingly and not be caught unaware.”

The action plan went on to review our existing workplace pension, including the following key questions:-

  • Did the scheme meet qualifying criteria? How suitable is the range of investment funds available? What was the charging structure of the scheme? How satisfied were we with the administration standards? Did the provider have the financial strength to protect our employees interests?
Chris added: "We went on to review the existing scheme against the full market place of providers and agreed which scheme provider to use. To ensure all staff were fully aware of the background to the legislative changes and the approach taken by us as employer, we undertook a series of presentations to the staff. This allowed this to ask any questions and gain a better understanding of the changes." Taylor Patterson recognise that for many employers the new workplace pensions requirements, may place a strain on company cashflow and also time costs whilst having to deal with the administration and planning.