Payroll rather than HR to lead on pensions auto-enrolment

More employers are looking to their payroll departments than their HR teams to take the lead on pensions auto-enrolment, a survey from the Chartered Institute of Payroll Professionals (CIPP) has found.

According to the survey, payroll will take charge of the implementation of auto-enrolment at 40% of employers, followed by HR at 29% and pension providers/departments at 13%.

However, HR will be expected to oversee the communication of auto-enrolment to the workforce at the majority of employers, with more than two-thirds (69%) of organisations identifying HR as the department that will manage this.

This is compared with 35% of employers that said payroll would lead auto-enrolment communications and 26% that reported the pension provider/department would be responsible.

Karen Thomson, associate director of policy, research and strategic visibility at the CIPP, said: “As we all know, 2012 is a big year for the payroll and pensions industry, with the pilot scheme in readiness for the introduction of real time information as a statutory requirement from April 2013, as well as automatic enrolment commencing for the largest of employers in the next few months.

“Our research has indicated that the onus for implementation is on the payroll department and we are confident that the majority of payroll and pension professionals are fully aware of their responsibilities surrounding automatic enrolment and are making significant headway in their preparations.”

The survey also found that 50% of businesses said that they already had a qualifying pension scheme in place. However, two-thirds of employers said that they needed to make modifications to their current scheme to ensure it fully meets the qualifying criteria.

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