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Pension auto-enrolment for recruiters

by Laura Mould / Friday, 2nd June 2017


We’ve all seen the adverts – the big, hairy, purple creature being studiously ignored by employers and workers alike.  But how much do you really know about auto-enrolment pensions and the effect they have on you, the recruiter?

For all employed recruiters there is the obvious – you will, at some point when your employer reaches their staging date, be enrolled into an eligible pension scheme and begin to pay deductions from your salary.  At this point, you have the option to stay in the pension scheme, pay monthly contributions (which are matched by your employer) and start building a pot of gold for your retirement.

The savvier amongst you might decide to opt out, saving your hard-earned coffers yourself or, for the more flashy, just carry on spending it!

All well and good, but that’s not the end of the story.  For temp recruiters, who run PAYE temps, you’ll have the headache of automatically enrolling eligible temps into the scheme too, keeping track of who is in, and who isn’t, and fending off multiple questions from your workers.  And, if that wasn’t enough, you’ll now have to sell to your client an increase in charge rate, to pass the cost of the employer pension contributions on, or swallow a hit on your margin (neither of which makes any of the temp recruiters I know very happy!)

How can I make this run more smoothly?

Firstly, talk to the experts – some pension scheme providers have extensive working with temp recruitment agencies and are accustomed to the high churn nature of the business.  Take your time to research the pension scheme providers carefully and ensure you have selected one which is appropriate for your business.

Secondly, communicate!  Communicate with other recruiters in your team, communicate with your workers, communicate with your clients.  The sooner and more comprehensively you can tell stakeholders what is happening and how it will affect them, the easier the transition and the fewer the queries you will likely face.

And last, but certainly not least, prepare!  Failing to prepare, is preparing to fail (as they say!) so start early.  For you personally, take financial advice if you need to and ensure you choose the right pension scheme for your needs (whether that is auto-enrolment via your employer or otherwise).  For temp recruiters, give yourself a couple of months at least to acquaint yourself with the scheme selected and to prepare your communication strategy and collateral.