Single Touch Payroll and your franchise

Single Touch Payroll is coming and if you employ 20 or more people it's time to get ready. 

What is Single Touch Payroll?

Single Touch Payroll is a new way for employers to report payment of salaries and wages, PAYG witholding and superannuation information.

With Single Touch Payroll (STP) you will report this information to the ATO each time you pay your employees. You will need to use payroll software that is STP ready.

Your due date for PAYG witholding and super contributions will not change, however you can choose to pay earlier.

  • If you have 20 or more employees you will need to report through Single Touch Payroll from 1 July 2018. This means you will need to choose a payroll product that offers STP by 1 July 2018.
  • If you have 19 or less employees, you have another year to prepare, however you can choose to start reporting through STP prior to 1 July 2019.

Count your employees

The first step is to do a headcount of your employees on 1 April 2018 to find out if you have 20 or more. The headcount is a self-assessment. You do not need to notify the ATO of your employee numbers. 

According to the ATO, you need to include the following employees in your headcount:

  • full time employees
  • part time employees
  • casual employees who are on your payroll on 1 April and worked any time during March
  • employees based overseas
  • any employee absent or on leave (paid or unpaid)
  • seasonal employees (staff who are engaged short term to meet a regular peak workload, for example, harvest workers)

Do not include any employees who ceased work before 1 April, casual employees who did not work in March, independent contractors, staff provided by a third party labour hire organisation, company directors or office holders. 

Get ready for STP implementation

If you use payroll software, find out whether it will offer Single Touch Payroll. The following software which most of our clients use is STP ready: Xero, Quickbooks Online, KeyPay.

If you don’t have software choose a product that offers STP. You can ask us for advice on choosing a product that suits your business needs.

Then, update your payroll software when it’s ready and start reporting to the ATO through STP.

For more information

  • Watch the ATO video on Single Touch Payroll here
  • Download the ATO 'Get Ready Checklist' here
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