Single Touch Payroll (STP) Guide
Single Touch Payroll in Australia has been slowly introduced to the business sector over the last couple of years.
Initially businesses with 20 employees or more were mandated to start using it in July 2018 FY. From July 2019, it is mandatory for all businesses to start using STP to report on employee earnings.
We’ve put together this guide to Single Touch Payroll so you can find out all the information you need. Jump to the area you need the most help with, and if at any stage it becomes too overwhelming, contact us for advice.
What is Single Touch Payroll (STP)?
Single Touch Payroll (STP) is the electronic lodgement of payroll advice to the Australian Tax Office (ATO). Your payroll software will need to be STP-compliant to send this data either directly or through a Transport Provider.
Single Touch Payroll in Australia first went live in July 2018 with businesses that included 20 or more people. At the turn of the new financial year in July 2019, Single Touch Payroll will be required by all small-to-medium businesses.
Have you read in the news the multiple reports about businesses being fined for underpaying workers?
How about the businesses that go bankrupt before anyone realises? The staff who have worked all those long hours didn’t even get a pay slip!
Single Touch Payroll is a step towards stamping out that problem. We all know someone who, at some point in their life, has been taken advantage of by their employer and not been reimbursed.
Because businesses will need to send information as soon as any pay details have been made by the employer, the ATO can and will pick up mistakes more quickly.
Sitting back and waiting for STP to start is not recommended. You should try to find out everything you need to know about STP before it’s required.
Use this definitive guide to ensure that your payroll software, and your business, is ready!
Single Touch Payroll and Your Business
Single Touch Payroll shouldn’t be confusing or difficult for your business to implement. Because we have been helping clients with it for almost a year now, the team at Accentis is well equipped to help you and your business.
Now is the best time to upgrade your business management software to a solution that allows your business to grow.
If you’re a growing business, when’s the last time you performed an audit of your company’s software assets?
Ask yourself this: What does your business currently do that could be improved by using a small-to-medium business management solution?
Accentis Enterprise is an ERP solution for small-to-medium businesses, which includes a strong Payroll and H/R module. Single Touch Payroll has been seamlessly integrated into the Payroll module and is backed by a complete user guide to take you through setting it up and using it.
The Payroll module is only one part of an overall software solution. Accentis Enterprise ERP combines Manufacturing, Time & Attendance, Customer Sales, Accounts and Financial, Inventory and Fixed Assets modules into one program.
If you’re not ready for Single Touch Payroll (STP) or, worse yet, you don’t even know what we’re talking about, it’s time you caught up.
Do You need Single Touch Payroll?
Single Touch Payroll is a requirement for all businesses within Australia.
Come July 1st 2019, all businesses in Australia will need Single Touch Payroll to send payroll data to the ATO.
The cost of implementing Single Touch Payroll falls to you, as a business owner, to upgrade your software and make it STP compliant, or to change your payroll software to something that is.
Accentis Enterprise is an STP compliant software provider that, if you need payroll software only, has you covered.
Accentis Enterprise has been supporting many businesses through the 2018/2019 financial year. Because we support small-to-medium businesses with 10 or more employees, some have needed STP and some have not.
Maybe you are part of a business that has fewer than the required 20 employees for Single Touch Payroll. In that case, here’s some good news: You can start using STP with Accentis Enterprise right now.
If your business can use STP, you should try using it now so you’re familiar with the changes required in July.
How will STP Impact Your Business
Single Touch Payroll might be a huge change not only for your business but also for your employees. How is it going to affect you as the employee or you as the business owner or you as the Accountant or bookkeeper?
If you’re an employee or you work multiple jobs, you’re in luck. It doesn’t matter who you work for and how many people you work with, you don’t need to do anything for STP.
You can certainly read about it, stay informed and make sure your employer knows about it, though.
Apart from that, everything on your end will work as it already does. You will still get paid the same (unless you ask for a raise), and you probably won’t even notice a difference unless you ask one of your managers.
If you’re the business owner, you do need to know what’s going on.
If you currently own a business with 20 or more employees, you should already be using Single Touch Payroll.
If you’re a growing business, you should have already started planning for it.
As a business owner, you need to know what obligations you have for STP and what you need to have in place. Should you wish to start using STP before July, you can go right ahead. Just keep in mind that, once you start, you need to continue.
Accountant / Bookkeeper
If you’re the Accountant or bookkeeper, you should already be familiar with what’s going on. You probably don’t need to stress too much.
You will need to know about Single Touch Payroll, and you should be informing your clients about what STP is and how to use it.
Now is not the time to let your clients cruise along and assume to know what’s expected of them. Being proactive will assure them you know what is coming. You will also be able to help them with any questions they have.
Find Compliant STP Software
If your payroll vendor does not yet support Single Touch Payroll, now is the time to look at changing payroll software to offer your business more.
Accentis Enterprise is a fully compliant payroll vendor that allows any small-to-medium business to start using STP right away.
In July 2018, when Single Touch Payroll was first required, large vendors such as MYOB and XERO were not yet ready and have had to catch up. This left all their clients out of the loop and they needed to tell the ATO about their inability to use STP.
At Accentis, we’re proud to have had a compliant Single Touch Payroll service available for small-to-medium-sized businesses since the start of June 2018.
Our company is a member of the Australian Business Software Industry Association (ABSIA) and we’re a recognised STP vendor.
We have extensive knowledge in implementing STP and offer exceptional support to our clients as they integrate the process into their business. Single Touch Payroll is an important step for all Australian businesses and employees.
To make sure that your business complies with the latest in payroll services and tax obligations, check your business assets. You might be in a position to look for a solution that improves not just your payroll but also offers your business room to grow.
Choose a Transport Provider
To be able to use Single Touch Payroll (STP) with Accentis Enterprise, you need to elect a Transport Provider.
We integrate with STP-compliant Transport Providers who will securely send the data to the ATO on your behalf.
Choose one of the STP Transport Providers with which Accentis Enterprise integrates and contact them to organise an account.
There are three different options to choose from. We support STP with Ozedi and MessageXchange but, if you want to use a different Transport Provider, you need to ensure they can support a manual file upload process.
Check out our video on the Transport Providers we have chosen to work with. We’ve also created a video detailing the process of signing up to Ozedi. You can view it here.
We’re able to guide you towards the best solution for business improvement and assist with the features you need. We are aware this is a large change for some businesses and can be an investment in time and money. We’re here to help you every step of the way.
You must select one of the Transport Providers to send your Single Touch Payroll data to the ATO.
Transport Providers will charge you based on the amount of data sent through their system. Accentis will not charge you to connect to a Transport Provider because we have written our integration to them automatically.
If you want to use Ozedi as your STP Transport Provider, you will need to register with them. You can register with them at the following link or contact them on the phone number listed.
Phone: 1300 737 614
To open an account with MessageXchange, you will need to contact them either through their website or give them a call. All their details are below.
Phone: 1300 769 414
Start Using Accentis Enterprise and STP
Once you have everything configured and you’ve signed up to a transport provider, you’re good to go whenever you want!
You need to know what’s involved and what your obligations are. We’ll help you wherever we can and continue to offer information and advice as we get closer to the date.
Since our payroll module is fully compliant with all STP processes and requirements, you can become familiar with it now.
It’s important to note that, once you start using Single Touch Payroll, you cannot roll back. It’s a permanent change to a new payroll system, one that will be mandatory for all businesses come July.
Once you have configured STP for your payroll, you won’t need to do any other major configurations. If you decide to change Transport Providers, we can guide you through this process.
What to do Before Using Accentis Enterprise STP:
To make sure you are ready for STP, you should be signed up and familiar with the requirements. For information regarding how Accentis will lodge STP data, you can visit our complete user guide here.
You should also have completed the following setting up process:
- Assessed that you need to sign up for STP based on the ATO’s requirements
- Decided on a Transport Provider who will send payroll data to the ATO (This step is very important because Accentis does not send data to the ATO directly)
- Configured STP system preferences
- Reviewed any Custom Tax scales
- Reviewed Pay item settings
- Reviewed Employee data
- Configured Payroll permissions
What to do after configuring Accentis Enterprise STP:
It’s now time for you to do your first pay run using STP! Don’t worry: It’s really very simple and is pretty much business as usual.
- Enable Single Touch Payroll in your settings so you can lodge details with the ATO
- Process your first pay run as usual. When you apply it, you will be asked if you want to lodge it with the ATO. Say YES. That’s it. you’re pretty much done
- Run the STP dashboard to show the status of the ATO lodgement: SA4422 – Payroll > Report > Single Touch Payroll > STP Dashboard
- If everything is green, there are no issues. Well done!
- If everything is not green, it’s OK; there’s no need to panic. Please read the report guide linked above to learn what this may mean and how you can fix it
The ATO understands this is a large shift for many businesses and will be understanding in the early stages.
STP End of Financial Year (EOFY) Changes
Single Touch Payroll (STP) has changed how businesses report employees’ end of financial year (EOFY) information to both your employees and the ATO.
What you need to know
Because STP is sent to the ATO on each pay run, the process is much easier. Employees will no longer need to be provided with a payment summary for payments made through STP. Until July 31st, you are still able to ‘finalise’ your employees’ EOFY payroll information through Accentis Enterprise for the 2018-2019 financial year. If it is ready, you can also finalise this information after June 30th.
You are no longer required to lodge a payment summary annual report for the amounts reported through STP, as long as you complete the finalisation declaration by the finalisation date.
What you need to do
Employees need to be informed on the changes too. They need to be aware that:
- You will not be giving them a payment summary
- Their payment summary information is called an Income Statement in the ATO online in myGov
- They need to log into their myGov account > Select ATO online services > click on “my profile” > Select “my employment” > then “income statement” to access this information
- If they use a registered tax agent to lodge their income tax return, the agent will receive the income statement information directly from the ATO
- If they don’t have a myGov account or cannot access one, and don’t use a registered agent, they should call 13 28 61 and they will be able to get their information
If employees need any help creating or logging into their myGov account and linking to the ATO’s online services, they can easily get access to information at ato.gov.au/onlineservices.
Single Touch Payroll Resources
If you’re still learning about Single Touch Payroll or want to read some more information, we’ve got you covered.
The ATO has also created several webinars that provide a wealth of information.
You can watch the recordings available on the links below:
- Why and what is Single Touch Payroll?
- Getting ready for Single Touch Payroll
- Corrections and fixes
- Single Touch Payroll and Super
Of course, we also have more information if you need it.
Our Single Touch Payroll (STP) webpage contains all the information you need, plus much more. We have related links, ATO information and a host of related articles packed full of details.
Our User Guide is also packed full of incredibly helpful information to help you get started and use STP easily. The guides contain topics such as an overview of STP, walking you through the setup, FAQ’s and more.
Single Touch Payroll (STP) is now a reality for all businesses in Australia whether you like it not. If you haven’t been able to find all the information you need here, we’d love to know. It’s live now and you can start using it if you want!
Get in touch with us to find out what we can do to help you.
Is your business ready for Single Touch Payroll?
Are you ready to make more money for your business?
Click here to start your journey today!