What is Single Touch Payroll (STP)?
Single Touch Payroll is a Federal Government initiative aimed at streamlining business reporting obligations regarding certain taxes and wage information.
Often referred to as Single Touch Payroll, or Single Touch Payroll Reporting (STPR), it was legislated on the September 16 2016, under the Budget Savings (Omnibus) Act 2016.
Under the legislation, employers will be required to report ordinary time earnings, staff wages, Pay-As-You-Go (PAYG) withholding information, and superannuation contributions directly to the ATO, at each payroll cycle.
Key dates for Single Touch Payroll
Single Touch Payroll will become mandatory July 1 2018 for ‘substantial’ employers, those with 20 or more employees as of April 2018. However, it will be available to employers July 1 2017, for those who wish to begin reporting earlier.
For employers with 19 employees or less, Single Touch Payroll will also be made available July 1 2017. There currently is no information regarding whether it will become mandatory for employers with 19 employees of less.
Single Touch Payroll will provide employer payroll data in ‘real time’ to the ATO. This will allow them to monitor payroll compliance, and perform data-matching to determine if Superannuation Guarantee Charge as well as PAYG withholding obligations are met.
For employers, Single Touch Payroll will seek reduce the administrative reporting burden by providing an automated reporting system throughout the entire financial year, that ensures transparency.
Changes for Employers
- Ordinary Time Earnings, Salary or wages, and PAYG withholding information will reported in real time to the ATO, as payroll is processed periodically.
- Super contributions will be reported to the ATO as they are paid.
- Employers will need to update their payroll software to be STPR compliant, or implement STPR compliant payroll software, if they currently don’t have one.
- New employees will have the option to complete TFN and Super Choice forms online.
- STPR will become the approved form of reporting for PAYG withholding.
- Employers who use STPR to report their PAYG withholding obligations will have their PAYG withholding prefilled in their BAS by the ATO
- Employers will no longer be required to submit an annual PAYG report to the ATO.
- Employers may no longer need to supply payment summaries to employees.
Changes for Employees
- View online year-to-date pay, the tax that has been withheld as well as your super entitlements throughout the year.
- Complete pre-filled TFN and Super Choice forms online when you start a new job.
- Access a range of tax and superannuation services, lodge tax returns and track your super online, using the myGov portal.
Where to now?
July 2018 is slowly creeping up, and it’s important that employers start thinking about Single Touch Payroll, and what it will mean for their business.
Business that currently use payroll software, will need to upgrade their system to be STPR compliant. For businesses that are currently not using any payroll software, they will be required to implement STPR compliant software prior to July 1, 2018.
In addition to this, all businesses should consider the robustness of their current payroll processes, including the accuracy and efficiency in how staff are paid. Integrating a compliant workforce management system with your payroll software is a simple and effective way to ensure that you remain compliant in all aspects of the payroll process.
For more information about Single Touch Payroll, visit the ATO website.
Awards & Rostering |
Want to retain frontline employees? Pay them properly
Eat out at a trendy restaurant or stroll into a store for some window shopping and the first person you encounter can set the tone of your interactions with the business as a whole. The demanding job of pleasing paying customers falls squarely onto the shoulders of frontline workers. They’re the first touchpoint someone has with a business and could be their last. You can be a loyal customer to your favourite brand for years and never interact with someone who works behind the scenes, at a desk in the head office. Numbers support the value of a well-trained frontline workforce providing high-quality customer service. According to a HubSpot research, people no longer trust businesses as they used to, preferring the opinion of family and friends. But who influences that opinion? Around 90% of the research participants consider an immediate response from customer service support very important, while 72% expect a response within 30 minutes. And they aren’t afraid to spread the word about their experiences, good or bad. So to keep doing good business, you need to retain your best-performing frontline employees. How do you make them stay? Give frontline workers their due Sometimes struggles with employee retention can be traced back to the basics. Are you paying them the right way, with the right wage, at the right time? Wage compliance is a big deal for frontline staff, most of whom are casual workers. When managers are too busy chasing down employees to wrangle data on clock-ins, overtime, and leave balances, and payroll managers are unavailable for hours every pay period, they lose precious time that could have gone to improving employee engagement (understood to be a key factor in retention). A few employee engagement strategies managers could be missing out on implementing: Instituting more transparency Creating programs for appreciation and recognition Professional development training and career planning Regular communication and candid feedback The Australian award system can be a roadblock to this, however. It has been steadily undergoing review since 2014, and businesses can expect many policies to change this year. While the review’s main aim is to simplify the language used in regulations to make them easier to understand, there’s also the possibility of slight changes in rates. These award changes are yet another factor businesses need to adapt to—and combining that with an already-complex system means without the right workforce management tools, administrators may make mistakes. Streamline pay processing with an online payroll calculator When manual payroll errors hold you back from improving frontline engagement, it’s time to find automated tools to do it for you. Save time by avoiding the need to encode each clock-in, set up spreadsheets, and manually calculate staff wages. Using an online payroll calculator makes it easy. Just input your employees’ start and end times, their hourly rate, and any breaks they’ve taken and the online payroll calculator will automatically present their final wages to you. You can add as many employees as you want and print the completed calculations when you’re done. With an automated tool, not only do you reduce time manually calculating, you can also be more assured that what you’re paying staff is accurate. Timesheets shouldn’t take days on end for any company, and software is taking care of these tasks to give back time to many HR and payroll officers. Is an online calculator not enough for your more complicated wage calculations? Then it might be time to invest in a workforce platform with more features. For more extensive payroll automation, Tanda’s Award Interpretation Engine automates rostering and payroll for any business, taking into account overtime, allowance, and higher duties. It also automatically updates for any new Fair Work regulations. Try Tanda for free, for 14 days, no credit card required.