Buck Bond Group

Auto enrolment déjà vu: avoiding the mistakes second time around.

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Sue Pemberton

“Re-enrolment should be a much easier process.” Sue Pemberton, Head of Contract based DC Consulting

With re-enrolment upon us, the painful memories of the first time round come flooding back. However, the changes that have been made, both in the form of legislative easements and market developments, mean that re-enrolment should be a much easier process.

One of these changes is the ability to exclude members from re-enrolment if they have applied for fixed protection. This created a great deal of anxiety first time round when busy executives had to remember to opt out within the opt out period, or risk losing their protection.

A word of warning, however: make sure you have the evidence on file to confirm fixed protection was provided, as you wouldn’t necessarily have requested this at the time. This would be included as part of the review (or audit) of your auto-enrolment processes, so that your senior staff are reassured, and you are compliant and won’t risk breaching the re-enrolment requirements.

The other area we have found significant improvement in is the flow of data and the systems used by providers. In many cases, a workaround was required to enable the correct data to be configured and processed. This involved some manual intervention or the use of third party software that was not only time consuming, but introduced the risk of human error. The improvements made in provider systems in many cases can reduce or remove these, and improve efficiency and reduce risk.

The review (or audit) is designed to identify these as well as check you are complying with all the updated legislative requirements. We’ve found that many employers are falling foul of the need to provide fixed protection evidence, putting themselves at risk of failing to comply with auto enrolment requirements. Make sure you don’t make the same mistake.

Let us know what you think. How are these changes impacting you? Share your experience in the comments area.