All employers must offer autoenrolement pensions but only 2% of SMEs have secured a scheme – survey

New research* from workplace pensions provider NOW:Pensions reveals that four in ten (44%) small and medium sized companies haven't given any thought to how they'll go about finding a pension scheme to comply with the new autoenrolment legislation.

Autoenrolment affects all companies that employ people. There is no opt out. Registration and a declaration of compliance is a legal duty under the Pensions Act 2008. If you want to know more about autoenrolment click here or go to

Of the 450 small and medium sized enterprises (SMEs) surveyed in March this year for NOW:Pensions, 5% said they intend to consult an independent financial advisor, 4% are going to search the market and do the research themselves but only 2% have already made a decision and secured a scheme.

More than a fifth (22%) say they intend to use their existing pension provider for auto enrolment, in spite of the fact that some providers will not support the autoenrolment needs of smaller employers. Have you checked to make sure your pension supplier will?

Many SME employers have done nothing about the new pension requirements, even though more than half (57%) of firms surveyed said they think that their choice of pension provider is important and only 8% admit to thinking it is unimportant. 40% say they believe offering a good quality pension scheme will help with employee retention and nearly a third (32%) think it will help to improve the attractiveness of their company to potential employees.

Help is at hand. Through ‘Business Accountant’, a service provided by the Chartered Institute of Management Accountants (CIMA) Members in Practice, companies facing autoenrolment can book a local CIMA Member in Practice. Call 023 8064 3763.


*Research undertaken by BDRC Continental, an award-winning insight agency. Questions were put to 450 UK SMEs (up to and including 250 employees) via BDRC Continental's monthly Business Opinion Omnibus. There were also telephone-based interviews with a nationally representative sample of senior financial decision-makers across the UK, weighted by size, region and sector. Fieldwork dates: 3-13 March 2014.