With 480,000 SMEs due to set up a workplace pension during 2016, Aviva has developed five New Year’s resolutions that small business owners should think about making.
Following these five steps could help smooth the process of finding the right scheme and getting it implemented.
The five resolutions are:
- Find out your staging date. This is the date by which the Government expects you to have your scheme set up. This will kick-start your auto-enrolment journey and gives you a time frame to work to. You can find out your staging date here (you’ll need your PAYE reference)
- Decide if you need some support. If you have a financial or business adviser, or an accountant, they should be able to help. If not and you want to complete the process yourself, there is plenty of information available. Downloading Aviva’s guide to auto-enrolment is a good place to start.
- Don’t stick your head in the sand. It is a legal requirement for all employers, no matter what size, to have a workplace pension scheme. Start preparing for it as soon as you can and act now.
- Choose wisely. The priority should be that business owners end up with a scheme that works well with their systems, is easy to run and is positive for employees. It also needs to be able to adapt as the business evolves.
- Talk to your employees about the pension scheme. A workplace pension is a very attractive benefit that your workforce should be aware of.
Around five million workers have already started saving into a workplace pension scheme since auto-enrolment was launched in autumn 2012.
Most of these have been from larger employers but the focus is now shifting to SMEs with 1.8 million businesses due to set up a pension scheme over the next two years.
‘Meet it head on’
Andy Beswick, MD, business solutions at Aviva, said: “Business owners have to comply with auto-enrolment legislation so it’s best to meet it head on and start the planning process early. By following the five New Year’s resolutions we’ve laid out above, you can give yourself a decent head start.
“It’s traditional at this time of year to decide to make changes to your life for the better such as getting fit or giving up bad habits. We’ve made our resolutions simple and easy to follow to give you the best chance of sticking to them. In fact, you could complete the first one with just a couple of clicks.
“Auto-enrolment doesn’t have to be a painful experience. Start planning now and you’ll feel all the benefit later.”