payrollIt is now less than 10 weeks until 1.4 million UK businesses will have to start complying with new legislation from HMRC concerning Real Time Information (RTI). RTI is regarded as the biggest change to payroll since PAYE was introduced in 1944, with employers having to start submitting data to HMRC every time a payroll is run, rather than annually at year end.

Mark Paraskeva, CEO of IRIS SME Division, who have been running training seminars to help bring employers up to speed, commented:

“We noticed a severe absence of RTI training and support in the market some time ago, possibly due to a lack of awareness and understanding of the change. To combat this issue, last summer we began offering RTI training seminars to any business, whether they were IRIS payroll users or not. We have recently enrolled our 10,000th payroll professional on one of our RTI seminars. IRIS believes it has enrolled more SMEs in RTI training that all other UK RTI training providers combined and this is a great landmark for us.”

This news comes after it was revealed by a DTE Business Advisers survey that only 4% of SMEs had any knowledge of RTI, meaning that 1.3 million organisations were still unaware of the change, despite its imminent arrival.

“We were shocked to hear about the lack of awareness surrounding RTI, as it is such a major payroll change. However, we are dedicated to ensuring that as many employers as possible will be prepared for the April compliancy deadline,” Paraskeva added.

“The main advice we are giving to employers is to check that their software and processes will be RTI compliant and prepare accordingly.”

According to HMRC, the aim of RTI is to make the PAYE process simpler for employers and pension providers, making in-year deductions more accurate for individuals. However, it is vital businesses start preparing as soon as possible as there are a number of new processes to learn before implementation.