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Single Touch Payroll – What do you know?

Written by Bryn Robinson • Director
Published on 02 Jul 2018

2019 Update

This blog has been reviewed and updated with consideration to changed dates.


Single Touch Payroll – What do you know? If the answer is very little then keep reading. We are going to be answering the questions: What is Single Touch Payroll? When does my business need to start using STP? Do I have STP compatible software? And how does STP benefit my business?


What is Single Touch Payroll?

It is a new way that employers will report payments to the ATO such as:

  • Salaries and wages, including allowances and deductions
  • PAYG withholding
  • Superannuation information.

Employers are to report their tax and super information every time they pay their employees, not just monthly or quarterly, from their payroll solution. You do not need to provide payment summaries to your employees for the payments you report through STP.


When does my business need to start using Single Touch Payroll?

It started 1 July 2018 for employers with 20 or more employees.

For employers with 19 or less employees, you will need to start reporting through STP 1 July 2019.

Employers you should know that you need to perform a headcount of your employees dated back to 1 April 2018. This is to determine if you need to start STP reporting from 1 July 2018. Your headcount must include:

  • Full-time employees
  • Part-time employees
  • Casual employees and seasonal workers who were on your payroll 1 April 2018 and worked any time during March
  • Employees based overseas
  • Employees absent or on leave (paid or unpaid).


Do I have Single Touch Payroll compatible software?

If you are thinking that your entire payroll processing needs to change it doesn’t. It’s just that after every pay period your payroll software provider needs to send the required reporting information to the ATO. So how do you know if your software is capable of doing this?

Below is a list of some of the current software providers who are STP ready for 1 July 2018.

  • Xero
  • Quickbooks Online Payroll
  • MYOB
  • Sage
  • Aussiepay
  • CloudPayroll
  • Employment Hero
  • Paypac Payroll Services


I have a registered tax agent, can they manage my STP reporting?

Yes they can report through STP on behalf of the Business.


How does STP benefit my business?

STP allows:

  • Streamlining and automation of your business reporting obligations.
  • The ATO to pre-fill the BAS W1 and W2 for employers.
  • Your employees timely access to their year to date payment and super information if they have a myGov account.

For those of you asking why STP is being implemented, please see our blog STP is on the horizon, what does this mean for business?


Important information

During the first 12 months that you report through STP you will be exempt from an administrative penalty for failing to report on time. Unless you have received a written notice advising that a failure to report on time in the future may attract a penalty.

Check out another recent blog in this category.

Bryn has spent nearly 20 years with Fitzpatrick Group Building Better Businesses. Now a Director and also General Manager, Bryn assists our business clients in the areas Accounting, Taxation, and Business Growth.
Authour \u2022 Bryn Robinson

Director, Fitzpatrick Group

Post Categories: Small Business | Tax Essentials

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