12 Jan 2016 11:00am

SMEs concerned about workplace pensions process

Small firms are still unclear on how to set up a workplace pension for their employees, a new survey has found

According to the Federation of Small Businesses’ Big Voice Community, many firms are still unclear on how to proceed with auto-enrolment and how much it will cost their businesses.

Meanwhile, three in four business owners believe auto-enrolment puts too much pressure on them.

The FSB said a number of employers are starting to comply with auto-enrolment in January and tens of thousands others will start setting up their pension schemes each month in 2016 and 2017.

John Allan, FSB national chairman said the sooner employers get to grips with what they need to do, the better off they will be.

“Most of the businesses which have already set up a work place pension told us they found the process fairly straightforward, but we know many remain concerned about their ability to cope,” Allan said.

Up to 1.8 million small and micro-businesses are still required to stage their workplace pension schemes for staff by 2018, with costs averaging £8,900, according to the Centre for Economics and Business Research.

The Pensions Regulator said last week that the roll out of automatic enrolment has been “a success”. However, the regulator said smaller employers are more likely to leave things to the last minute.

Charles Counsell, executive director, said at the time, “We are concerned that a minority of smaller employers are leaving things too late and struggling to comply on time.

Jessica Fino


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