Everything You Need To Know About Single Touch Payroll Reporting

Anita van Wyk Payroll

You may already be familiar with the term ‘Single Touch Payroll Reporting’, as the government initiative is expected to be somewhat of a game-changer in the industry. Well if you’re not across it already, the deadline for compliance is fast approaching and it’s time for preparations to get underway. Clients of lucent advisory will not need to take any action as we’ve already got this covered of your behalf.

For everyone else, we want to ensure you recognise what exactly the initiative involves and what these reporting changes will mean for your business. We’ll tell you everything you need to know about Single Touch Payroll Reporting including whether or not it will be compulsory for your business and how you can best prepare for compliance.

What is Single Touch Payroll Reporting?


Single Touch Payroll is essentially a reporting change that is soon to become the new national standard for payroll reporting. Under this new change, employers will be required to report all payments, including salaries, PAYG withholding and super information at every occurrence of payment.

This means that each time an employer deposits payment into their employee’s account and generates a payslip, a report will need to be made. By reporting payments as-you-go, the method is expected to become more streamlined and the ATO will then be provided with real-time access to payroll information.

When is the change taking place?


It’s expected that all substantial employers, that is businesses with 20 or more employees, will convert to the new system by 1 July 2018. Those wishing to get the ball rolling and make the transition sooner are now able to do so.

Is the reporting change compulsory for my business?


For any businesses with 19 or less employees, the change is currently non-compulsory, though the option is there to come on board to stay ahead of the game. The first step for any employers should be conducting a headcount to determine if they qualify as a substantial employer and will be legally obliged to comply by the deadline.

The headcount should include:

  • All full-time and part-time employees
  • Casual employees who worked at any point during March
  • Overseas and seasonal employees and those who are on leave

Do NOT include:

  • Casual employees who did not work in March
  • Employees who ceased employment before 1 April
  • Company directors
  • Office holders
  • Independent contractors
  • Religious practitioners

How should my business prepare?


If your payroll is outsourced, now is the time to get in touch with your payroll provider to discuss the change and ensure they’re fully across the transition and will be ready by the 1 July deadline. Our clients who have our payroll system implemented can rest assured we have the transition under control and won’t need to worry about any potential oversights.

For businesses who operate their payroll in-house, you’ll need to ensure you are fully prepared.

  • Confirm Single Touch Payroll is compulsory for your business with a headcount.
  • Review your current payroll process to gain an overview of any changes that may need to be made.
  • Determine whether you’ll need to update your existing payroll software to a version that is Single Touch Payroll compatible.
  • Once finalised, monitor the process to confirm your information is being correctly transmitted.

For more information on Single Touch Payroll, please refer to the ATO website.
https://www.ato.gov.au/business/Single-Touch-Payroll/

Lucent advisory specialise in outsourced HR and payroll solutions for Australian SMEs. Our dedicated team of HR and accounting professionals can service your payroll and compliance requirements and ensure your processes and systems are always kept up to date with Australian legislation.

Give us a call on 8471 7007 or contact us via email if you’d like to discuss your requirements.