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It’s time for small businesses to begin auto-enrolment

Auto-enrolment is in full swing now, with all the big companies signed up already. Over the next couple of years, smaller businesses are due to stage. In fact in 2016 alone, over 500,000 small businesses will be sourcing and setting up a workplace pension scheme.

Most of these business owners will have little to no experience with pensions. It’s likely that many of them will look to their business advisers for help.

Auto-enrolment is the government’s answer to the growing pension problem faced by the UK. As the UK population ages and the largest generation in history retires, there are widespread concerns that people haven’t made enough financial provision for their retirement.

The state can’t shoulder the burden alone, so the government is prompting employees to save into a pension through a workplace pension scheme. By law, all employers must set up and contribute to a pension for all eligible employees by 2018.

What does auto-enrolment mean for small businesses?

As a business owner, you need to start thinking about what you need to do for auto-enrolment. You’ll have a staging date – by which time you need to have set up your scheme and identified all eligible employees.

You can’t move your staging date and The Pensions Regulator will fine businesses who don’t comply with what is now the law around auto-enrolment.

Eight steps to auto-enrolment

  1. Set up a suitable workplace pension scheme.
  2. Automatically enrol employees who meet certain criteria into your scheme.
  3. Enrol any other employees who ask to join.
  4. Communicate with your workforce to let them know what’s going on.
  5. Make pension contributions for certain members of your scheme.
  6. Remove any automatically enrolled employees who opt out of your scheme.
  7. Submit a declaration of compliance to The Pensions Regulator and continue to check the rest of your workforce to see if you need to contribute for them.
  8. Keep records and re-enrol employees who’ve opted out every three years.

 How Aviva can help you

As one of the UK’s leading pension providers, we’re all set to help you auto-enrol your workforce as smoothly as possible.

We have an auto-enrolment ready workplace pension scheme, suitable for all sizes of businesses, even the very smallest. We also have a range of tools, guides and software to help you or your business adviser to make sure you meet all your auto-enrolment obligations on time.

We’ve got plenty of information about auto-enrolment in general and how we can help you at our auto-enrolment website.

In the meantime, here are a few of the highlights:

The Company Pension from Aviva

Our Company Pension is ideal for auto-enrolment. As it’s rated 5 Star by respected independent financial researchers Defaqto, you can be confident that you’re giving your employees a high quality workplace pension scheme.

  • Easy to manage
  • Suitable for all sizes of business
  • Auto-enrolment software to help you meet your auto-enrolment obligations
  • Good quality default investment approach
  • Broad investment range for confident investors
  • Online management puts your employees in control of their pension
  • UK-based telephone and email support
  • Aviva discounts for your employees on products such as Car and Home Insurance.

You can get an online quote in less than 10 minutes or ask your business adviser to do it for you

Get a quote now.

Get help choosing a pension provider

You’re expertise lies in your chosen area of business, but it’s likely that you haven’t had experience of setting up a pension scheme for your employees.

You’re making a big decision here for your employees, so you need to be confident that you’re making the right choice. We recognise that it can be difficult to know where to start when you’re acting in an area outside your comfort zone.

Because of that, we’ve put together a paper with insights from experts and people that have already gone through the process. We think you’ll find it useful to read before you start on your auto-enrolment journey.

Download your copy of Choosing a pension provider now.

Plan your auto-enrolment to-do list with our free planning tool

As an employer, you have lots to do to get ready for auto-enrolment. Your tasks begin in the run-up to your staging date and continue during and after auto-enrolment.

It would be easy to forget to do something, but our free Auto-enrolment Planner kicks that risk into touch for you.

The planner creates a task list and project plan of the actions and decisions you need to take to be ready for your staging date. And, more than that, it tells you how long each task should take.

That means you can plug in your staging date and know at a glance when you need to start. Even better, planner will keep you on track. It will remind you when you need to do something and flag anything that needs your attention urgently.

You can tailor the planner to fit your business, adding, removing or customising any of the tasks you need to complete.

You can use our Auto-enrolment Planner with any workplace pension scheme, not just Aviva’s Company Pension. Just make sure you use the employer version. Our direct link below takes you straight there, but if you search for it, make sure you click on the employer tab at the top of the page.

Start using our Auto-enrolment Planner now.