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A faster way to file your UK workplace pension with Payroll in Xero

Posted 3 years ago in Small business by Aaron Bloom
Posted by Aaron Bloom

Managing your employee pensions manually is a difficult and painful process. Not only do you have to remember to enrol your eligible employees, but you also have to manually file their contributions. And then you have to repeat this for each and every pay run. It makes managing a pension tedious, slow and error prone.

Payroll in Xero now lets you submit your pensions information directly to NEST or The People’s Pension (TPP) in a couple of clicks. We’ve also made it easier to enter the right pension details into Xero. Add that to our existing features that automatically assess employees, calculates contributions and updates your accounts you’ve got a fast, and safe way to manage your pension. No other combined accounting and payroll software makes it so easy to use both providers.

Any customers who have added payroll to their plan since 21 February can take advantage of this functionality. From today we are also phasing the roll-out to existing customers.

To start using payroll, simply log in to Xero and add it to your subscription. Then read on to find out how to set up and file your NEST or TPP pension in Xero:

Set up your workplace pension

  1. Go to Payroll Settings and select Workplace Pension.
  2. Select your Pension Provider. If you don’t see your pension provider in the drop down then select ‘Other’ and fill the details for your provider.
  3. Authenticate with your provider and your pension scheme will be pulled into Xero. This can take up to an hour. Once updated we’ll send you an email and let you know.

If you need to make changes to your scheme, then make sure you’ve updated the details with your pension provider. Then all you need to do is click Refresh Scheme Details in Xero and we’ll retrieve and save your changes. In most cases your pay item and enrolled employee’s pay templates will be updated automatically. However if you have a mixture of contribution percentages for your employees it is important to check and update the contributions on the pay templates for each employee to make sure they can be calculated and filed correctly.

File your Nest/TPP pension in a few clicks

  1. When you process a pay run we will automatically assess your employees, calculate your contributions and deduct them from your employee’s pay.
  2. Go to Pension Filings and hit Submit to have your data filed directly with the provider. If you want to check the filing before submitting you can download a PDF report.

And that’s it! No more CSV files to download. No more formatting, checking and editing to make the file match the exact format required by your provider. And no need to log into your pension provider’s portal and work out how to upload your data. No more errors.

More value. More choice. More efficiency

We want to continue to offer UK small businesses and their accountants or bookkeepers the strongest accounting and payroll solution in the market. So we’re working hard to make it easier to file information with other pension providers.

Useful links


Jane Lynch
July 26, 2017 at 6.58 pm

I am finding this so frustrating in Xero. My client has been using payroll for a couple of years now, so apparently we don’t yet qualify for auto sync with NEST. This is poor service for a loyal customer. I’m not getting any help with this from Xero. Very frustrated and disappointed.

March 11, 2018 at 12.27 am

When will an integration with Smart Pensions be released??

May 1, 2018 at 11.11 am

Yes – when will the Smart Pensions link be released? It was promised 2 years ago

Matthew Rogers
June 7, 2019 at 1.08 pm

I am also looking for the link with Smart Pensions – please advise

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