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Workplace pensions: Auto-enrolment - Your Auto-enrolment Timeline...

Your Auto-enrolment

The Auto-enrolment process begins when you receive your staging date from the HMRC.

Once you have your date, there’s a number of activities you’ll need to complete, including, choosing a payroll solution and communicating the workplace pension changes to your workforce. Take a look at our timeline below to get started on devising an action plan.

We are offering a comprehensive ebook that covers everything you need to know about Auto-enrolment

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Auto-enrolment – the latest change to workplace pensions - doesn’t have to be a complicated process.

Here at Quickbooks, we’ve created a 10 step process timeline that will give you the information you need to stay compliant. Click on the image or link below in order to download your timeline to start your workplace pension journey.


Download Timeline Infographic

How to make sure you’re ahead of the Auto-enrolment curve in 10 steps.


Auto-enrolment. Workplace Pensions. Whatever you call it, you’d be forgiven for thinking that it was a legislative minefield, with various regulations ready to pounce on any wrong move.

Unfortunately, there’s no getting around the fact that you’ll need to plan your Auto-enrolment journey.

However, the steps you need to take in order to provide all of your staff with a pension are relatively straightforward – but that’s only if you’re assertive and start working on Auto-enrolment now.

You may have your ‘staging date’ (for those who don’t, we explain what this is below) and it might be a way off (maybe even in 2016), but as an undoubtedly busy business owner, you’ll have a million and one things that need to get done.

It’s for that reason that we’ve produced this useful, 10 step guide that will help you manage your workplace pensions in the most effective way possible.


Find your staging date


“Not sure what a ‘staging date’ is? Well, it’s a date that the government have set for your business to start auto enrolling your staff into a workplace pension scheme. You can find out more about the staging date on our blog. The Pensions Regulator will write to you with your staging date a minimum of 12 months before your staging date – but this is only the beginning of the journey – there’s some more work for you to do!

Create a plan


Got your date? Fantastic! Now, it’s all about working backwards from that date to make sure you meet the workplace pensions deadline. At this point, it’s probably worth mentioning that the staging date is generally fixed and you cannot change it. However, it can be postponed – confused? Don’t be. Visit our “What is Auto-enrolment page?” for more information on deferring your staging date.

Workforce assessment


Not all of your staff are going to be eligible for a workplace pension so the responsibility will be on you to make sure you understand who is entitled to a pension and who isn’t. Anyone who is employed by you and falls outside of the ages of 22 to SPA, and earns less than £10,000 a year does not have to be auto enrolled, but can still opt in or join the pension scheme. This is covered in more detail in our page “Who is eligible for Auto enrolment?

Managing your payroll


Assessing your employees is an ongoing process, so you’ll need to have a payroll solution to help you do this as well as assist you with pension deductions. Find out how QuickBooks Online is helping more businesses succeed with its intuitive features here.

Select a pension provider


You may already offer a pension scheme, and that’s fine – you can keep using it, as long it’s compliant with the requirements of Auto-enrolment. If it isn’t, or you don’t have a scheme in place, then you’ll need to find a provider – soon.

Communicate the changes to your staff


You’ll need to keep your staff informed throughout the whole workplace pensions process, and it is a legal requirement to contact them at least a month before the staging date. But, why leave it that late? We recommend you do it earlier to deal with any questions from your staff.

Time to enrol your employees…


With 30 days before your staging date, you need to make sure that you have fully assessed the ages and salaries of your staff, and based on those assessments, enrol the eligible staff into your pension scheme. (Remember, anyone in your team who falls outside of the ages of 16 and 74 and earns less than £10,000 a year is not eligible for Auto-enrolment).

Running your payroll system and making contributions


Every time you pay your staff, you’ll need to make contributions to their pensions. The amount you pay will depend on when your staging date was, as the minimum contribution for employers will increase in 2017 and again in 2018.

Monitor and manage


At this stage, an intuitive software tool will help you manage your staff and monitor opt outs – where eligible staff make the decision to leave your pension scheme - as well as include those staff who weren’t appropriate to enrol, but changes in their circumstances, may now be entitled to a workplace pension.

Compliance documents


a. Complete your declaration

Once you have automatically enrolled your employees you need to go onto The Pensions Regulator website and complete the declaration of compliance (registration).

b. Record and document

Without comprehensive records, it becomes extremely easy to lose track of all your monitoring. Again, the payroll system you choose needs to be smart enough to organize your documents in a way that’s easily accessible and makes sense to you. Remember you need to maintain records as part of your employer duties.

Got a bit more time to find out about Auto-enrolment and Workplace Pensions?


Great – find all of the information you need in order to keep your business compliant with our specially created e-book, brought to you by QuickBooks. Written for the small-to-medium business in mind, we’ve created, a practical, easy to use guide that cuts through all of the confusion around Auto-enrolment, and provides you with details on the impact the new legislation will have on your organisation.


By downloading our guide, you’ll find details on:


  • What is Auto-enrolment?
  • Who is eligible for a workplace pension
  • How to create your own Auto-enrolment timeline
  • Top 5 things you need to know about workplace pensions

Our free Auto-enrolment ebook will help small-to-medium enterprises make sense of the Auto-enrolment journey.

Simply enter your email to download the ebook:

Learn more about Auto-enrolment

What is Auto-enrolment?


With major changes taking place with workplace pensions, make sure you’re up to date on what Auto-enrolment is and what it means for your business.

Read Article

Who is eligible for Auto-enrolment?


Not all of your employees will need to be Auto-enrolled. Find out what you need to know about staff opt-in and opt-outs here.

Read Article

Set up Auto-enrolment in QuickBooks


We’ve developed our product so that you manage Auto-enrolment, all in QuickBooks Online.

Read Article

A Year in the Life...


Join us as we spend a year following a charity, The Counselling Foundation, as they make sense of Auto-enrolment.

Read Article

We are offering a comprehensive ebook that covers everything you need to know about Auto-enrolment

Simply enter your email address to download the ebook:

Important pricing terms, offer details and disclosures
  1. Intuit do not receive any commission from any pension provider.