Services - Payroll
Accountants for Payroll Services
The process of paying your employees - and yourself - should be pretty straightforward, but recent evolutions in legislation and HR mean payroll management has become a finicky and bureaucratic process. It also means that it’s a new and robust addition to accounting services for small businesses.
More than just the old 3Ps - payslips, P60s and P45s - handling payroll today means real-time reporting, automatic enrolment to company-provided pension plans, statutory sick pay and more. And that’s just the government requirements; you may opt to offer additional incentives to attract and retain staff to your small business.
The reality is, as a small business owner you probably just don’t have time to effectively administer, manage and report the payroll process. Turning to an expert in accounting services for small business can help you reduce the burden of things like PAYE, RTI and pensions.
The Pay As You Earn (PAYE) system is a method of paying income tax and national insurance (NI) contributions on a more regular basis than saving everything for the end of the tax year. The employer deducts tax and NI from wages before paying the employee, even if the employer and employee are the same person. At the end of the tax year, a P60 form is issued which sets out the total amounts paid to you and deducted from you for the previous tax year. A tax year runs from 6 April to 5 April the following year.
Each employee is given a tax code by HMRC which tells the employer how much tax to deduct from wages; HMRC will use an “emergency tax code” if it doesn’t have the right information, which could result in more tax than needed being deducted from the salary. That’s just one of the reasons why it pays to work with a small business accountant for payroll; they can ensure all the right details are available to HMRC so employees can maximise their tax efficiency.
Real Time Information (RTI)
The most significant change ever made to PAYE, RTI is designed to make PAYE submissions more efficient. It means you need to submit information to HMRC in real time, every time you pay employees. It doesn’t change the way you calculate PAYE; it just means you submit information more often, rather than just at the year-end.
There are penalties for any employer not submitting a Full Payment Submission or Employer Payment Summary on time, and if your payments are late. It pays to make sure RTI is part of your accounting services for small business.
The UK government has made many recent changes to pension regulations in order to encourage those of working age to start saving for retirement earlier, and reduce the burden on the benefits system. Previously many employers didn’t offer a pension, or employees opted not to join the company pension scheme; that’s now changed with the introduction of Automatic Enrolment.
Automatic Enrolment makes it compulsory for employers to automatically enroll their eligible workers into a pension scheme, and for the employer to pay money into the scheme. It’s added a whole level of complexity to managing payroll, and is yet another reason why many small businesses opt to work with an expert in accounting services for small businesses.
Beyond the day-to-day
Your expert small business accountant can also help you with the aspects of payroll management that aren’t routine, such as:
Emergency tax codes for new hires
Calculating statutory maternity or redundancy pay
Bonuses, both cash and non-cash
Overtime and commission payments
Subsidised memberships, such as gym or private healthcare
Company share schemes
No matter how big or small your business is, using an accountant can help you avoid the pitfalls of payroll and ensure that your employees are paid on time. The changes that have been made to payroll management - and the changes that will no doubt be made in the future - have made the administration of payroll a time-consuming task which can divert you away from focusing on what matters most: your business.
What else can a small business accountant help with?
5. Filing the personal tax returns of the company’s directors
6. Filing the annual confirmation statement
A small business accountant does more than your tax return; the best become your business partner as you grow. What else can your accountant support you with?