Taking away the headache for Professional Introducers
AE in a box is enabling our clients to embrace Auto Enrolment in an simple , efficient and cost effective process. It delivers all the requirements needed to stage and enrol responding to enquiries quickly and professionally. We highly recommend them. – David Cummings, TWP
AE In A Box makes the process of Auto Enrolment simpler for both your clients and you. Providing your clients with a complete project Management system that guides them through every step of Auto Enrolment Regulation, pre Staging date and beyond. Leaving you to provide a solution for your clients Auto Enrolment problem, without having to commit the time, education or resources to do so yourself.
Grab your 12 page full colour client facing brochure to use with your clients
Simplifying client management
Your Dashboard displays a snapshot of all your clients, with the option to drill down for more detail. Providing updates and task for clients in real-time, walking them through the AE regulatory hoop one step at a time, leaving you more time to act as their professional adviser. Our unique Alerts feature proactively prompts you when clients accounts need your attention.
How it helps Accountants
How it helps Employers
How it helps Financial Advisers
Auto Enrolment is a massive opportunity for all financial advisers to be able to better serve their existing clients and even more importantly for those advisers looking to grow their business, to go out into the community with professional connections and directors.
But for most advisers there is a barrier to entry into effectively servicing clients that prevent them from taking full advantage of this incredible market. For me this is where AE in a Box fits perfectly.
We are using AE in a Box to go out to the market place and develop our client base and professional connections, but without having to find the time to deliver the solution, as AE in a Box empowers the employers to go through their AE tasks themselves. I believe advisers who wish to grow their business and don’t take advantage of this market are really missing out. – Roy McLoughlin, Master Adviser
Why are there only three pension providers and why have alternative pension providers been discounted?
AE in a Box has been designed to make the process of complying with automatic enrolment as straightforward as possible throughout. Therefore when it came to pension selection we had to ensure that we provided a choice but also limit the choice so that it was an easy decision for employers to make.
Based on much of the research into how we all make decisions (including much of the academic research conducted in the book “Nudge” by Richard Thaler and Cass Sunstein) we decided that three pension providers was an appropriate choice for many direct employer.
This was combined with the fact that many of our partner businesses support employers by providing more bespoke consultancy based pension research. We also conducted additional research and produced a due diligence document (available to partners on the AE in a Box live site) which details how we reviewed the market and decided on the three partners we selected. This was based on a number of factors including among others independent ratings, service standards and financial strength.
What is max time before Staging Date when system can be used?
Employers can sign up at any time however the tasks on AE in a Box don’t start until 9 months prior to their staging date. However many AE in a Box employers sign up prior to this stage due to the fact that they want a solution in place so that once they reach the stage where we suggest they need to start to take action (9 months prior to their staging date) the employer can then start to complete the required tasks.
Employers who sign up to AE in a Box prior to the 9 month period whilst paying the up-front cost (£79 + vat) won’t start to pay the £29 + vat per month until 9 months prior to their staging date when their tasks start.
As advisers how would we be in control of the scheme the employer chooses?
Advisers can be in control of the scheme the employer chooses by ‘logging in’ to AE in a Box as the employer and making the pension selection on their behalf. Many of our existing partners add value in relation to pension selection and log into AE in a Box to confirm the pension provider selected on their behalf.
Does the payroll software list contain the HMRC free software?
The HMRC Free software is contained on the list. However it’s important to remember that the HMRC payroll tool doesn’t currently provide any automatic enrolment compliance functionality with no intentions for these tools being added directly to the HMRC payroll tool although the pensions regulator has said they are currently developing some tools to support employer users of the HMRC payroll.
What are your timescales for responding to emailed queries?
Turnarounds on email queries are 24 hours.
Is there telephone support?
We provide telephone support to partner businesses (all partner businesses get an introduction call from a member of our support team on joining the platform within a couple of days).
What’s the latest an employer can join?
An employer can join at any time however for employers who come on board let’s say 3 months prior to their staging date will have a large number of ‘overdue’ tasks. We recommend that employers join with plenty of time to spare until their staging date so they have sufficient timescales to complete the tasks required.
What’s the ongoing value of AE in a Box?
It’s important to remember that both the pensions, payroll and regulatory obligations an employer faces due to automatic enrolment actually start at their staging date but never end. There are a number of ongoing ‘tasks’ employers need to complete including re-enrolment, re-certification and when contribution levels slowly increase between now and 2018.
The law continues to change. The last change in automatic enrolment regulation happened in April 2015 and changes the way that certain employees are treated especially within notice periods and have HMRC protection. Also, if you consider countries where they have had similar legislation to automatic enrolment for a number of years (Australia is the most pertinent example) there are examples of how the rules governing this regulation consistently changes over time.
Therefore at AE in a Box when a change in automatic enrolment regulation occurs we update our tasks to ensure that employers continue to be aware of what they need to do to continue to comply. In this respect AE in a Box for a relatively low per employer cost is an efficient way for employers not only to comply up to staging date but to ensure they keep up to date with changing legislation as automatic enrolment evolves.
Employers users who stop paying for the service are in a position where they will stop receiving these useful updates. AE in a Box users continue to have access to employee videos and the ‘ask the expert’ and ‘ask the regulator’ tools and will lose access to these tools if their membership ceases.
Can employers use AE in a box for implementation and stop using the service once staged and set up?
Yes. Employers are not obliged to use AE in a Box for a minimum contractual period and can stop at any time. Therefore some employers use AE in a Box to help them reach compliance by their staging date and stop using the platform.
AE in a Box it’s worth having a tool in place which keeps them constantly informed, helps them educate and inform their employees via the video content and acts as an ongoing support service.
For many of the employers who use the platform these added value continuous benefits validates the ongoing cost of AE in a Box and the fact that we are continuously focused on ensuring that AE in a Box continues to improve means that it will become increasingly more valuable to more and more employers as both the market and AE in a Box continues to evolve.
Doesn’t AE in a Box create another layer of work for the employer especially if they’ve got a robust payroll system which feeds directly into the pension scheme?
Automatic enrolment obligations broadly speaking sit in three clear areas. Pensions, Payroll and Compliance. Whilst robust payroll systems and payroll systems with additional plugins currently meet all of the ‘payroll’ obligations well and often making communicating with the pension provider easier the reality is that many employers whilst completing all of the tasks with their payroll and pensions are missing tasks within the third area, compliance.
Every quarter the pensions regulator issues statistics on the aspects of automatic enrolment where employers have fallen down. Often the aspects of automatic enrolment an employer has fallen down on isn’t pensions or payroll related but instead is related to the tasks which are compliance related.
Robust payroll software is certainly an important part of the puzzle in ensuring employers comply efficiently. However if the employers don’t complete a range of regulatory tasks including nominating a contact, registering with the regulator or not keeping up to date with changes in automatic enrolment legislation which impacts their business this may mean they find themselves in breach of the regulation because they’ve assumed their payroll system ‘does it all’.
AE in a Box performs an important function, to ensure that SME employers have both the tools and the knowledge to comply with automatic enrolment simplifying the process.
Is AE in a box available free of charge to IFA’s and accountants?
Yes. There is no charge to the adviser, only the employer pays.
Are outstanding tasks prioritised?
Yes. Outstanding tasks are priorities with the tasks which are most overdue always appearing at the top of an employers ‘to do’ list.
If an Adviser has an employer who is/has staged can you still use AE in a box as a support tool for all parties?
AE in a Box can be used as a support tool for employers who have already staged. However when they initially sign up for AE in a Box the platform will currently flag the pre staging date tasks as uncompleted.
Therefore initially the employer (or the professional supporting them) will ensure that as these tasks have been already completed will go onto the platform and confirm these tasks have already been completed.
Once this is done, AE in a Box will sit as a support solution designed to ensure that the employer remains up to date with legislation together with the access provided to all of the other tools on platform.
We have employer users who have already stage who use AE in a Box as an ongoing staging and compliance too.
How do we as advisers become a partner of the system so we can introduce our employers / introducers?
The easiest way is to express your interest by signing up here http://www.aeinabox.co.uk/professional-introducers/. You do not need a sign up code as an adviser. You will then be contacted within a few days to schedule your training where you will understand how to get the most from the system.
If an IFA registers with you, is there a tool to input a dummy employee to familiarise ourselves with the site and it’s functionality?
Not in the live site. However partners who sign up will receive a call from one of our team who will provide a personalised walkthrough of the platform together with a demo login to our demonstration site which whilst not having full functionality has been specifically designed for partners to become comfortable with the platform. You can also view this video to familiarise yourself with the tool.
Are there other pension providers available on AE in a box?
No. If the employer is applying for a pension scheme via AE in a Box the choice is limited to three. However many of our partners provide a consultancy solution (usually for a fixed fee) where they review the whole of the market on the employers behalf.
Can we use just the task management side of AE in a Box rather than have the providers available on your panel?
Yes. We have partners who consult with their employers on the most appropriate pension but use AE in a box to ensure that the employer complies and continues to comply successfully by completing the regulatory tasks highlighted on the platform.
If a client has just purchased a payroll software ‘bolt on’ would they need AE in a Box?
Many of our employer users have a software ‘bolt on’ with their payroll software and in fact we recommend that many of the ongoing tasks which sit within payroll are most efficiently completed by these plugins. The additional functionality through their payroll software completes many of the tasks which sit under the remit of payroll, but most of the payroll plugins won’t have the functionality to make employers aware of the additional regulatory tasks an employer needs to complete.
The risk is an employer might assume that they are fully compliant with automatic enrolment legislation just by using a payroll plugin but actually miss out on important regulatory tasks.
Do you setup schemes for Employers? If not, do the providers charge for setting schemes up?
We do not setup schemes for employers. AE in a box is designed to guide the employer through a process so that they can complete the process themselves. The providers on platform don’t charge for scheme set up, although it’s important for both employers and the partners who work with them to consider the costs associated with the schemes on platform.
With regards to the fee generator, but how long is this paid for i.e. how long is the contract valid for?
The fee of £5.80 paid to partners is paid for as long as that particular employer continues their subscription. There is no minimum contract for employers. The rebate is paid quarterly.
Get in touch
If you’d like to find out more about using AE in a Box then contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org or call Bridget on 07917 713625.