Half (50%) of professionals working in payroll or HR in Ireland do not fully understand the upcoming auto-enrolment pension scheme, according to new research from Zellis.
The scheme, first announced in March 2022, will require all eligible employees working in Ireland to be enrolled in a workplace pension scheme by early 2024.
However, in addition to half of payroll and HR professionals admitting they don’t understand the looming deadline, 43% also claimed that they are unprepared for the changes. This highlights a clear knowledge gap between employees, businesses, and the external bodies handling the change on a national level.
Without proper preparation and understanding, this change could lead to confusion and difficulties for organisations and the workforce. This research reveals a pressing need for increased support and resources to help Irish organisations prepare for and effectively implement the pension auto-enrolment scheme.
In addition, 79% of HR professionals expect that they will need to make further investment to implement a new pension system into their payroll environment. Not only will businesses need more knowledge around the pension scheme, but the majority are also going to need to allocate funds toward their backend payroll systems to make the transition as smoothly as possible for employees.
Seán Murray, Director of Product Services, Zellis, comments “From our findings, it’s clear there are still a number of steps that need to be taken before businesses are ready for the move to pension auto-enrolment. Getting ready for the rollout is too complex to be left to just one department. It requires time and close collaboration between payroll, HR, and finance.
“Organisations need to take clear-sighted action, coordinate their key business functions, and leverage the support and knowhow of their partners and providers. As we saw when UK businesses went through the same process, those who act quickest and take the bull by the horns will be the most effective.”