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Pensions auto-enrolment kicks in for largest employers


Today (October 1) marks the start of pensions auto-enrolment for the largest employers in the UK. Under the new scheme, businesses must automatically enrol qualifying workers into a workplace pensions scheme and make contributions of at least 1% of annual salary. This includes agency workers who must be enrolled by their agency if they meet the qualification criteria.

Although workers can then choose to opt themselves out, the Government hopes that by making saving the default option, more people will put money aside for later life.

This month sees the largest businesses in the UK, such as supermarket chains, implement the reforms through an approved pensions provider. Some companies are choosing to use NEST (the National Employment Savings Trust), the Government-backed scheme open to all businesses and workers. Businesses of all sizes will be staged into the reforms over the coming years, with all employers taking part by 2017. Recruitment agencies will be staged in alongside other businesses on a timeline based on payroll size.

The REC has prepared a toolkit for members to explain the employer duties and help agencies prepare for their staging date. Visit for details.

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