The following is an excerpt from "Employer Reporting: The Perfect Storm," an eBook from The Plexus Groupe exploring the Affordable Care Act IRS compliance challenges faced by employers. To download the eBook, click here to be redirected to the Plexus Groupe's home page, where you can fill out our quick, simple eForm to be sent a PDF of the book. In this excerpt, author and ERISA attorney Jared Pope details the ACA reporting decisions human resources professionals are left to make.
A major concern for most companies is how they are going to empower and educate their administration in day-to- day operations. Most HR staffs are already stretched to the limits --- how can they handle more?
With the new reporting obligations requiring, among others, census data, payroll data, and an employee’s status, all of this “data” has to be recorded and reported the same way on a continual basis. So, the question remains: How can anyone streamline the reporting process and make the most out of what they capture when the playing field keeps changing?
Let’s look internally at companies. Payroll departments or your internal operations department might feel qualified. These departments and individuals may say they can do it, but do they have the software to do it or are they trying to do it all off of a spreadsheet manually? If they say that they can provide the reporting, you’ll have to go “all-in” and buy up to a specific level of expertise and technology platforms – which can be expensive. So ask yourself: Is this the right move and are they really going to know the process and procedures (especially since the draft forms for 2015 have just been released)?
One other major factor that most companies forget to take into consideration is that this reporting can be challenging for people who do this kind of thing every day. Let’s not forget that ACA reporting is a moving target. Do companies really have the time, money, and resources to have someone internally try and keep pace with ACA updates, while embracing the learning curve in understanding a new system?
It is one thing to be able to gather data.
The trick is knowing how to report it.
The Plexus Groupe is providing filing, consulting and preparation services for IRS Forms 1094 and 1095. Contact us at 847.307.6100 (Chicago), 972-770-5010 (Dallas) or 405-241-9462 (Oklahoma City) to speak to a Plexus professional, or contact us via the Web.