How IFAs can play a leading role helping even the smallest employers reach their staging dates

For many small to micro employers in the UK, auto enrolment can be a time-consuming burden and an administrative nightmare, especially as many such employers don’t always have the time, money or available resource to set up a suitable and compliant workplace pension scheme – so it’s easy for firms to bury their heads in the sand.

In fact, recently we reported[1] that in Q4 2016, one in five firms (22%) missed their auto enrolment staging date and 41% signed up either very close to or even after their staging date – the highest number recorded over the year.

With an increasing number of firms not being able to fulfil their compliance duties in time, and subjecting themselves to heavy fines from The Pensions Regulator – this is the perfect time for financial advisers to step in and help even the smallest employers, especially those who are new to pensions and may need a little more help than the seasoned pros.

Benefits of choosing a financial adviser

Our top five reasons why SMEs and micro employers should choose a Financial Adviser:

  1. Advisers will point them in the direction of quality auto enrolment providers such as those within the Master Trust Assurance Framework and baring the Pensions Quality Mark of assurance
  2. Advisers will remind employers to issue regular communications to their employees about staging dates, one of the important duties on the TPR checklist, and one which is subject to fines if overlooked
  3. Not all providers will accept last minute or late stagers. Advisers have the knowledge to recommend providers who have online application processes that are fast and easy to use either by the employer or their adviser
  4. Advisers are able to recommend appropriate providers who can offer multiple methods of implementation and ongoing support to suit the employer – phone, live chat, screen share, online help centre, recorded “how to” webinars
  5. Advisers have the ability to recommend upgrades to the employer’s payroll software to include the latest auto enrolment processes, or perhaps even refer them to their favourite accountant/payroll bureau to manage it all for them



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