Pensions Guide - Smart Pension

Smart Pension is one of the pension providers you can choose to meet your workplace pension duties.

The easiest way to send information to Smart Pension is using their API, as explained below. You can also upload PAPDIS CSV files to Smart Pension if you prefer. We don't charge extra for this or any other pension features.

Signing up with Smart Pension

When you sign up for Smart Pension on their website, please note down the 'Company ID' as you will need it later.

You don't need to type employee details into Smart Pension as they can be added through the API.

Smart Pension uses a kind of tax relief called the Net Pay Arrangement. This reduces the taxable pay, leading to a slightly lower tax deduction on the payslip. Our system does this automatically if you choose the right contribution type, as explained below.

Setting up The Payroll Site to Work with Smart Pension

Ensure every employee has a 'Start Date' on their 'Tax Details' tab and check they have an address and a unique 'Employee Ref No' on their 'Personal Details' tab.

Then, add the pension scheme:

  1. Click on the 'Workplace Pensions' option.
  2. Click the 'Pension Schemes' tab.
  3. Click 'Add Pension Scheme'.
  4. Click 'Edit Details'.
    • Name: choose any name for your pension scheme.
    • Type of Pension Interface: 'Smart Pension (Employer)' or 'Smart Pension (Adviser)', depending on how you log on to Smart Pension.
    • Employer Reference: enter your 'Company ID', as given by Smart Pension.
  5. Click 'Save Changes'.
  6. Click the 'Connect' button and follow the instructions on screen.

Next, add starting contributions for the pension scheme. These pension contributions will be used for each new member.

  1. Click the 'Starting Contributions' tab.
  2. Set up the employer contribution:
    • Choose 'Employer Contribution' from the dropdown list.
    • Click 'Add Pension Contribution'.
    • Set the 'Pensionable Pay' and 'Contribution' columns.
    • Click 'Save Changes'.
  3. Set up the employee contribution:
    • Choose 'Employee Contribution (NPA)'.
    • Click 'Add Pension Contribution'.
    • Set the 'Pensionable Pay' and 'Contribution' columns.
    • Click 'Save Changes'.

Alternatively, if you are using the minimum allowable pension contributions, you can choose 'Minimum Pension for Auto Enrolment (NPA)', which will work out both the employee contribution and the employer contribution.

Note: Don't choose any of the RAS options as they have the wrong type of tax relief for Smart Pension.

Enrolling Your Staff

Once you have set up the pension scheme, you need to know whom to enrol. Ensure that your duties start date is set on the 'Employer' page and then, every pay run, the system will prompt you if you need to enrol anyone. For more information, see our guide on How to Assess Your Staff.

Sending Data to Smart Pension

To send your data directly to the Smart Pension API:

  1. Complete your pay run and click the 'Confirm Payments' button.
  2. Click the 'Pensions' tab. If there are enrolments or contributions to transfer, you will see the option to create a file.
  3. Click 'Create'.
  4. To view the contents, tick 'Show File' and then 'View Data'.
  5. Click 'Send'.
  6. After some time, Smart Pension should accept the data.
  7. If anyone joins or leaves the pension, you will see a 'Mark as Done' button, which you should click to update the membership information.

Note: You can also transfer data to Smart Pension by downloading a PAPDIS CSV file.