Almost two-thirds of accountancy firms say their clients are unprepared for auto-enrolment (AE). They also say the costs of meeting their new legal requirements at their staging dates have “significantly increased”.
61% practitioners questioned by Accountancy Age revealed their clients were “not very” or “not at all” prepared for AE.
Four in ten (39.4%) said their practice’s costs had “significantly increased”. Processing, staff and admin time, client preparation and providing advice were among the main reasons.
Over the next year, thousands of businesses will reach their staging date to AE staff in qualifying workplace pension schemes.
The survey also revealed that half the firms lack confidence in selecting a pensions provider for their clients. It also showed 72.3% of firms are worried about clients being fined by the Pensions Regulator.
How Corinthian can help
Lee French is a Director of Corinthian Affinity, part of the Corinthian Group. Corinthian enables accountants, payroll providers and other affinity groups to deliver an AE solution saving clients money, time and stress.
“We want to ensure small businesses don’t miss their staging date by making a complex process simple,” said Lee. “That is why we have created the Affinity solution especially for accountants, payroll providers, IFAs and other affinity groups. It will give them the tools they need to support their clients.
“One in five businesses are missing their staging date and risk being fined. This means it's important for those of us who advise small and micro businesses to have simple, cost-effective solutions. This is the only way to deal with the tsunami of businesses facing staging dates until April 2018.”
To date, Corinthian Affinity has helped over 100 ‘affinity’ groups provide a simple AE solution for their smaller clients. It offers the Salvus Master Trust as its preferred pension provider. This trust has already achieved the Master Trust Assurance Framework (MAF) accreditation. This is the Pensions Regulator’s new standard. It has also received a five-star rating from Defaqto, the independent financial products’ researcher.