By Daniel Hunter

The Solihull-based Chartered Institute of Payroll Professionals (CIPP) is delighted to announce a new national initiative, funded by the UK Commission for Employment and Skills (UKCES) from its Growth and Innovation Fund (GIF), which will help to create new jobs in payroll, bookkeeping and financial administration and support business growth and sustainability particularly within small and medium sized enterprises (SMEs) and business systems outsourcers.

The CIPP is the only membership body to date to collaborate in this way. With the mandatory requirement for UK employers to submit PAYE records to the government in real time from April 2013 and the progressive impact on pensions due to the introduction of automatic enrolment, the demands of financial administration in all businesses is set to explode. This will create a huge demand for new jobs and additional skills in the workplace within organisations.

To address this the Chartered Institute, with the support of the GIF and its partners, have launched a national initiative to provide solutions for businesses in terms of new resources and up-skilling to ensure organisations can meet the challenge of these demands. The CIPP’s lead partners include the International Association of Bookkeepers, Grant Thornton and the Logistics Apprenticeship Training Academy. In addition, the CIPP’s apprenticeship and training delivery partners include System Training Carlisle, TDLC, SWA, Targeted Training Projects (TTP) and the Worcester College of Technology. The CIPP will also be supported by the Financial Skills Partnership.

Some of the details of the project are as follows:

- To create 550—600 skilled jobs through apprenticeship schemes
- To up-skill 600 employees
- To support HM Revenue & Customs in assisting SMEs to apply real time information (RTI) to their payroll processing procedures (this is mandatory by October 2013)
- To create an affordable and accessible resource on a part-time basis to support smaller SMEs
- To provide helplines to support SMEs particularly in payroll and pensions auto enrolment
- This project has received co-investment from UKCES through GIF

Simon Perryman, Executive Director at UKCES said: “We are happy to support the CIPP in its national initiative to create more job opportunities and apprenticeships as well as to provide additional training for professionals within the payroll and financial administration industries. Especially with the introduction of RTI and pensions automatic enrolment, UK businesses — in particular SMEs — will need as much help as possible adapting to these changes.

“This is a perfect time for a programme such as this to be launched and we are delighted to provide the backing the Chartered Institute needs to pursue such an important venture.”

Mr Lindsay Melvin, Chief Executive of the CIPP, commented: “This is a very exciting development both for the CIPP and UK businesses. There is clear evidence that SMEs often struggle and sometime fail due to a lack of financial skills. This project will provide the right level of financial skills, including payroll, bookkeeping and cash flow management to provide an affordable tool kit to enable SMEs not only to survive but to grow.

“The UK economy is dependent on SMEs and business owners need time to focus on what they are good at. This programme will provide organisations the resource and skills for robust and healthy financial management, enabling businesses to succeed.

“The CIPP, through its strong links with other financial institutes and organisations, training and education providers as well as its considerable in-house payroll expertise, can provide both the much-needed resource and skills.”

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