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New “KC” NI Code Prefix

Important information regarding the introduction of “KC” as a prefix for National Insurance numbers

This change was not included in the specification HMRC provided to payroll software developers this year. It’s also not catered for by the Government Gateway itself. As a result, Opera 3, Opera II and Capital Gold payroll systems do not accept NI numbers with the KC prefix, and FPS submissions containing these NI numbers are currently being rejected.

Until this issue is resolved, HMRC guidance to employers is not to enter NI numbers with the KC prefix into their payroll systems. We therefore advise users of Opera 3, Opera II and Capital Gold Payroll to leave the National Insurance Number field blank when adding a new employee with a KC NI number, and ensure that the employee’s name and address details are completed in full as HMRC will be using these as employee identifiers.

NOTE: Please contact HMRC for further information

Made In The Midlands 2015 Exhibition

As you may be aware, exhibition season is well underway and Minster have been taking the opportunity to attend and exhibit at as many as possible in order to meet local, well-established companies.Minster Team At Exhibition

In less than a week (Thursday 14th May 2015) we will be exhibiting at the Made in the Midlands exhibition where we are a Gold Partner. Whilst you have to be a member of Made in the Midlands to exhibit, other companies can register to attend the event.

The 2015 exhibition is set to be MIMs (Made In The Midlands) biggest and best yet with a brand new location hosting over 150 of our members exhibiting and an expected 1,000 visitors.

The Made in the Midlands Exhibition is a full day event which brings together the very best of Midlands manufacturing & engineering services from across a wide variety of sectors, including Aerospace, Automotive, Rail, Marine, Medical and Oil & Gas.

MIMs annual exhibition provides the ideal platform for networking with a view to doing more business and meeting like-minded companies from across the Midlands region.

The day will also include a series of seminars hosted by our partners on a host of topics which affect Midlands manufacturers.

Again, we are very excited to be exhibiting at this event and would love to see you there!

If you are interested in attending the Made in the Midlands exhibition in Wolverhampton next week (Thursday 14th May), then please register for your tickets at: http://www.madeinthemidlands.com/events/15690601010

*Tickets are available at no cost to Manufacturers and members of Made in the Midlands, please see the Made In The Midlands website for further details.

Minster Are The Cover Feature For Chamber of Commerce!

Chamber of CommerceMinster are proud to be the cover feature for the latest edition of Business Direction (Hereford and Worcestershire Chamber of Commerce bi-monthly magazine).

We were chosen for the cover feature due to our reputation of excellent service, quality and long-standing commitment to local businesses. We were given a series of questions to answer in order to highlight the importance of IT and how relevant it is to a companies growth.

Labelled as ‘Industry Leaders In IT Solutions’ , Nick and Susan Marlow answered questions such as ‘What are the main IT issues Minster deals with on a regular basis?’ and ‘Is legislation helping or hindering sector development?’, hoping to have given the readers more knowledge on how important it is to keep IT systems up to date and how a supportive IT company can help businesses.

Please feel free to click the link below, have a read and let us know what you think!

 

Winter 2014 Newsletter – Out Now!

The latest edition (Issue 6) of the Minster Focus newsletter has been released!

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Nick (Minster’s MD) Plays Bass!

Highlights Include: ‘Get Paid Faster’ with the new Debt Management Centre in Pegasus Opera 3, Keep The Spark In Manufacturing With SAP Business One, new PR Company to help Minster grow and Minster’s Director Nick Marlow plays guitar at local school.

Click here to view the latest newsletter.

The Employment Appeal Tribunal passed an important new ruling on Holiday pay on 4th November 2014

The Employment Appeal Tribunal passed an important new ruling on Holiday pay on 4th November. This ruling was in favour of including overtime and commission when calculating holiday pay.

What does this actually mean?

Holiday pay must now reflect the worker’s actual normal earnings rather than just basic salary. If a worker’s earnings vary depending on the amount of work they do or the times that they carry out that work, their holiday pay should now be based on an average of their actual earnings calculated over a 12-week reference period. The type of payments that need to be included in the calculation include overtime payments, shift payments (eg unsocial hours payments) and travel supplements (although reimbursement of out-of-pocket expenses would not be included).

How does this affect businesses?

All employers must now take into account overtime when calculating holiday pay. Employers are encouraged to prepare for this new ruling to ensure their business and employees are covered. Opera 3 Payroll and Opera II Payroll already cater for average week holiday pay and the accumulation of a holiday pay fund, by specifying which payment types are to be included in this calculation. More information can be found on the ACAS website.

 

Streamline Your Credit Control Processes With Opera 3 Credit Management Centre

The Opera 3 Credit Management Centre is designed to  help reduce bad debts, increase cash flow and improve the overall financial position of your business.CMC

The Credit Management Centre provides credit controllers and those involved in debt management with a centralised, easy-to-use tool which consolidates all of the information needed for effective credit control. Easy-to-understand, real-time graphs display your overall financial status so you can quickly see what is owed, who owes it and how much money has been promised by customers.

This gives you all the information you need to improve cash flow, reduce bad debts and improve the overall financial position of your business.

Debt Management takes tackling customer debt to the next level

The NEW Debt Management feature lets you create up to nine levels of debtor correspondence to chase late payments. It’s designed to boost your cash flow by helping you get paid quicker. 60% of small to medium businesses are now experiencing late customer payments. If you’re one of them, Debt Management is just what you need to get your cash flow back on track. Debt Management is just one of the key features available as standard to Opera 3 customers with the Credit Management Centre application on a current AMC.

Key Features

  • Easy to understand dashboard views of the overall financial position of your company and customers
  • Drill down behind key financial information, customer accounts, and transactions
  • Powerful filters allow you to manage customers that are over their credit limit and/or have overdue invoices
  • Create and organise customers into user definable Credit Management Groups according to their Debt
  •  Define custom Action Types and Outcome Types to be used with diary actions for recording activities and follow ups
  • Create and amend diary actions against individual customers or transactions, with an optional follow up reminder via Notification Services
  • Record and revise Promised Payments against individual transactions or at account level
  • Integrates with the Opera 3 Sales Ledger with instant access to the Account view for historical information
  • Easily put accounts on or off stop, increase or decrease credit limits, and re organise accounts into different Credit Management Groups individually, or in bulk
  • Dispute invoices and record the appropriate reason code
  • Print Statements, Copy Invoices and produce Debtors letters
  • Keep on top of actions due for completion with the Diary view
  • Additional Credit Management reports including: Promised Payments & Diary Activities that can also be exported directly to Excel
  • Integrates with Pegasus Instant Messenger (PIM) and Pegasus XRL

 

Opera 3 Version 2.14 Out Now!

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Debt Management: get paid faster

To help combat late payments, a new Debt Management feature has been added to the Credit Management Centre for designing, generating and sending correspondence to debtors.

It’s flexible, so you can specify and design up to 9 levels of debt letters per company, or per individual customer if letters are customised. Plus, you can create up to 9 e-mail covers for each level of company correspondence, or use one e-mail cover for all levels of correspondence.

A new Design Editor provides intuitive formatting tools to tailor each level of correspondence. It includes mail merge fields, text fonts, sizes and colours, tables, bullet points and images.

Correspondence can be generated and sent in bulk or to individual customers; it can be sent via e-mail, or printed for customers that require a hard copy. Debt Management is available as standard to Opera 3 customers with the Credit Management Centre application on a current AMC.

Debt Management: get paid faster

Debt Management: get paid faster

Scheduler Service (2.00)

A new Scheduler Service (2.00) provides server-side processing for both printed and e-mailed Debt Correspondence. For printed correspondence, the Scheduler Service will create the mail-merged PDF files and print. For e-mailed correspondence, the Scheduler Service will generate and e-mail the mail-merged PDF files.

All generated debt correspondence is automatically recorded against the relevant customer with a Sales Ledger Note and Credit Management Diary Action. A new History form provides a view of previously successful correspondence, with the ability to drill down to the underlying PDF. A Summary report will also be available to provide an audit trail of generated correspondence.

Pegasus Web Xchange and Payroll Self Service (1.14)

Employee Pensions for better visibility

pension-iconTo give employees better visibility of their personal information, an additional menu option “Your Pensions” will be added to Payroll Self Service. This will allow users to view their pension information including details of their current pension provider, a summary of their current pension scheme, their current contributions and their auto enrolment status. Plus, they’ll be able to drill down to a detailed breakdown of their overall pension contributions and filter by pension scheme and/or year.In addition, users will be able to view a breakdown of the Opera 3 Payroll deductions that relate to pension payments.

Payroll Self Service Validator 

The enhanced Payroll Self Service Validator will validate new pension information to be extracted to Pegasus Web Xchange. In addition, an uplift to the interface will make it more intuitive and user-friendly.

CRM enhancements

The release includes a number of enhancements to CRM for improved communication and efficiency and better reporting.

Further Notification Services integration: improved communication and efficiency

Activities and Sales Opportunities will be integrated with Notification Services. Notifications can be sent to users when an activity is created, modified, cleared, deleted, or as a reminder when it is about to become due. This will affect Activities created in the following areas:

  • The Activity Tab available in: Company Processing, Contacts Processing (including Group Processing), My Company, My Record, Sales Opportunities Processing, Project Processing, Stock Processing, Service Contracts Processing, Equipment Register Processing and Helpdesk Management Processing
  • Resource Scheduler and Summary Scheduler
  • Daily Calendar, Group Calendar and SPM Today

Notifications can also be sent to users whenever a Sales Opportunity is created or amended, and as a reminder when an Opportunity has reached the ‘Next Chase Date’. This will affect Sales Opportunities created in the following areas:

  • Sales Opportunity Processing
  • The Opportunities Tab available in: Company Processing, Contacts Processing, Referral Methods, My Company and My Record More reports can be exported to Excel, for information sharing and further analysis

5 more reports are available to export to Excel:

  • Sales Pipeline Management: Sales Pipeline Report, Telephone List and Activity List
  • Helpdesk Management: In-Tray and SLA Monitor

Salary Sacrifice Available For Opera 3 Payroll

With the advent of auto enrolment, salary sacrifice is becoming more and more popular with companies deciding to use it with their new pension schemes.

Payroll Payment Screen-Shot

Payroll Payment Screen-Shot

Under a salary sacrifice arrangement, an employee gives up some of their cash earnings in return for new or increased entitlements to non-cash benefits provided by their employer. Apart from pension contributions, such non-cash benefits include childcare vouchers, cycle schemes, travel, subsistence allowances and others.

Salary sacrifice can be financially beneficial for both employers and employees as it can reduce the amount of tax and National Insurance (NI) an employer deducts and pays to HMRC against the employee’s remuneration package. This happens when part of an employee’s remuneration changes from cash, for which tax and NI contributions are due, to non-cash benefits which are wholly or partially exempt from tax and NI contributions.

Opera 3 Payroll has been enhanced in order to automatically calculate both percentage-based and fixed-value sacrificed pension contributions and include them within the associated pension contribution files and reports.

There are many benefits to salary sacrifice in Opera 3 Payroll:

    • It’s very quick and simple to set up
    • Salary sacrifice can be used for both pension and non-pension sacrifices
    • A pension salary sacrifice can be based either on a defined value or on a percentage
    • Salary sacrifice information is printed on the payslip
    • Sacrificed values are included in pension contribution reports and pension contribution files
    • Pension salary sacrifice values are shown on the Employee History form
    • The employer’s NI saving can be added to the contribution
    • It’s included as standard with Opera 3 Payroll

If you decide to introduce salary sacrifice, Opera 3 Payroll will help you make a smooth transition, and you’ll be able to start benefiting from reduced costs simply and quickly.

Contact us for further information on Opera 3 Payroll & Salary Sacrifice.

Pegasus Takes Centre Stage at FDs’ Excellence Awards

Minster are delighted to announce that Pegasus have won the Financial Software Vendor (SMEs) category in the 2014 FDs’ Excellence Awards in association with ICAEW.

AwardsBased on a nationwide survey of CEOs and finance leaders, the initiative was developed to recognise excellence among UK finance directors as well as the key service providers that support UK finance.  The awards are supported by the CBI, Real Business and the London Evening Standard.

Following feedback from CFOs, FDs and senior financial decision-makers from British businesses about their auditors, banks, financial software providers and recruitment agencies, Pegasus fended off competition from Access; IRIS; Microsoft Dynamics; Sage and SAP to win the Financial Software Vendor (SMEs).  Winners were announced on the 1st May at the London Marriott Hotel, Grosvenor Square.

“In a highly competitive marketplace such as ours it is a huge achievement to win such a prestigious award. We are extremely proud of our software which helps finance departments to achieve efficiencies and drive business growth. Winning the SME category in these awards is testament to the fact that our customers recognise the valuable role it plays within their organisations. We are committed to meeting our customers’ needs through continuous innovation in our software.”
Stuart Anderson (Director) Sales & Marketing at Pegasus Software

 

For more information on Pegasus achievements click here.

 

0% Finance Offer

This Spring, we are pleased to announce the launch of our 0% finance option for any business who would like to acquire Opera 3 or upgrade from Opera II to Opera 3.

0% FinanceIt’s cost-effective – upgrade to Opera 3 and pay over time without accruing any interest charges. Plus, protect your cash flow by eliminating large upfront costs.

You’ll see an immediate return on investment – Opera 3 is put to use immediately so you’ll start seeing the benefits from its unique features and applications straight away.

Alternative source of credit – should you choose to take advantage of 0% finance, your other borrowing options remain unaffected.

If you would like to take advantage of this offer, call Minster before the deadline on 23rd May.
(Terms and conditions apply. Finance cannot be used in conjunction with any other offer.)

Update: Due to popular demand, the 0% finance offer has been extended until 25th July 2014.

Events

Opera 3 Event – Get Started!

As you may be aware, the end is in sight for Opera II with Pegasus advising that they intend to make an ‘end of life’ announcement within the next 24 months.

With this in mind, Minster have organised an Opera 3 event to go through details of how you can save money by upgrading early as well as the benefits your business will gain.

As well as Opera II customers looking to upgrade, this event is also suitable for those who are looking for an overview on Opera 3 as well as those who currently use it and would like to hear about future developments.

This complimentary event will include a run through of the added features of Opera 3 from both the Minster Team and Pegasus’s Product Specialists Steve Power and Sue Flavell.

For further information or the agenda please contact marketing@minstermicro.co.uk.

Auto Enrolment Logo

Final Auto Enrolment – Oct 2014

To ensure a prompt start, there will be coffee registration at the office from 9am.

As Auto Enrolment is fast approaching for many SMEs, the need for information and guidance has become more and more desired.

This is why we have held numerous auto-enrolment seminars with pensions and finance experts to help our customers with any prep information that they may need. After the success and great feedback of previous events, we are holding our LAST EVER auto-enrolment event with advice from our software team.

As this is our last ever auto-enrolment event, we urge anyone who has any queries relating to our responsibilities to attend so as not to incur any unnecessary consultation charges.

 If you would like further information, please call us on 01562 68211 or email us at marketingteam@minstermicro.co.uk.

Please note, due to popularity, you will need to register each person from your company individually

 

Auto Enrolment Logo

Auto Enrolment Seminar – Jan 2014

Auto Enrolment - image of a Piggy BankFrom 1 October 2012, changes to the pensions law (the Workplace Pensions Reform) have started to affect employers.

Auto Enrolment means that employers will have to enrol their employees into a pension scheme and pay into that scheme. We will be holding further seminars throughout the year, dates to be confirmed.

Real Time Information (RTI) Seminar

HMRC LogoRTI is being introduced to improve the operation of PAYE, making it easier for you, the employer, to operate PAYE. Employees will receive the information more quickly and it will help support the introduction of Universal Credits. We are holding a seminar on 29th January 2013 showcasing how Pegasus will be ready for the changes.