An increasing number of firms are leaving it to the very last minute to comply with their auto-enrolment obligations, according to one major provider.
Now Pensions said one in ten firms that signed up for its services in the last quarter did so after their staging date had passed, while 27% did so within one month of the date.
This represents a slight drop in the number of employers setting up a scheme after their staging date compared to the previous quarter, but a 50% increase in the number leaving it to the last minute.
The proportion of clients contacting Now Pensions six weeks or more ahead of their date has remained constant over the last three quarters at around a third.
Now Pensions chief executive Morten Nilsson said: "A large proportion of employers are taking the regulator's advice and planning well ahead for auto-enrolment but, a growing number are dragging their feet.
"Owners of smaller firms inevitably wear many hats and auto-enrolment can come low on the priority list. But, like it or not, auto enrolment can't be ignored and leaving it to the last minute inevitably results in more stress and more limited choice of pension providers."
This comes after The Pensions Regulator revealed 500,000 more small and micro-employers would have to auto-enrol staff than it had previously expected.
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