Single Touch Payroll

Single Touch Payroll is a government initiative to streamline business reporting obligations.

Employers will be able to report salary or wages, pay as you go (PAYG) withholding and super information to us from their payroll solution, at the same time they pay their employees. There will also be more options for completing tax and super forms online.

Employers with 20 or more employees must start reporting through Single Touch Payroll from 1 July 2018.

See our industry update for information about where we are at and what’s ahead for Single Touch Payroll.

Latest news

11 July 2017

The Single Touch Payroll Payevent service and future changes document is now available.

You will notice we have made a change to our terminology. The normal payevent message will now be referred to as ‘Payevnt.Submit’ instead of ‘Lodge’. This change is consistent with the interaction naming conventions used for other ebMS services. Updates to the Service registry are currently underway to ensure the new term is used consistently. 

We have also confirmed that the correct record delimiters to use for the Payevent are PARENT and CHILD, for example:

  • <Record_Delimiter RelatedDocumentID="" DocumentType="PARENT" DocumentID="1.1" DocumentName="PAYEVNT"/>
  • <Record_Delimiter RelatedDocumentID="1.1" DocumentType="CHILD" DocumentID="1.2" DocumentName="PAYEVNTEMP"/>

We are currently in the process of updating the Service registry to be more specific for this type of message pattern. Further information on record delimiters can be found in the final version of the ATO Common Messaging Implementation Guide located on sbr.gov.au.

28 June 2017

From 1 July 2017 a limited release of Single Touch Payroll will begin for a small number of employers. These employers will be able to report payroll information through a Single Touch Payroll enabled solution. Single Touch Payroll will operate with limited functionality for this select group.

Other important dates include: 

  • October 2017 - additional functionality will be available and payroll solution providers will be able to start releasing Single Touch Payroll products over time. Some payroll solution providers will stagger their releases and will let their clients know as solutions become available. Once available, employers can choose to start reporting through Single Touch Payroll early.
  • 1 April 2018 - employers will need to determine if they have 20 or more employees.
  • 1 July 2018 - Single Touch Payroll reporting will be mandatory for employers with 20 or more employees.

Note: The obligation to report superannuation payment information to the ATO is currently being reconsidered. We will provide more information about this when it becomes available.

20 June 2017

Draft business rules are now available to provide guidance and assist in understanding Single Touch Payroll business requirements.

The draft business rules were developed in consultation with the Single Touch Payroll Design Working Group.

You can email questions or feedback Single Touch Payroll. If you have registered for Single Touch Payroll contact your Account Manager.

20 April 2017

An updated version of the Payroll Event (PAYEVNT) service is now available via the Employer Obligations page on sbr.gov.au. Read the PAYEVNT Package Contents for changes contained in this version.

You can register for Standard Business Reporting (SBR) services by completing the online registration form. An account manager will contact you once your registration has been processed.

For design or business enquiries email the Single Touch Payroll mailbox.

For any technical enquiries contact your account manager.

16 March 2017

An updated version of the Payroll Event Message Structure Table is now available via the Employer Obligations page on sbr.gov.au.

You can register for Standard Business Reporting (SBR) services by completing the online registration form. An Account manager will contact you once your registration has been processed.

Should you require information email the Single Touch Payroll mailbox.

3 March 2017

Final versions of the Payroll Event business data element documents are now available.

20 December 2016

A draft version of the Payroll Event Software Developer Guidelines is now available.

23 September 2016

The Budget Savings (Omnibus) Bill 2016 – Single Touch Payroll received Royal Assent on Friday 16 September 2016.

Key consultation groups and forums

  • Single Touch Payroll advisory group

The purpose of the group is to assist in the design and implementation of the Single Touch Payroll initiative through members' collective knowledge, experience and influence.

  • Single Touch Payroll design working group

The purpose of this group is to work collaboratively to identify and work through issues on the Single Touch Payroll design from a business process perspective and take responsibility for ensuring resolution on any issues and action items.

  • Software developer technical working group

The purpose of this group is to discuss and resolve Single Touch Payroll technical and messaging design issues in the context of the eCommerce platform wholesale service interactions, where there is material impact on digital solution providers.

  • Industry engagement forum

The purpose of this forum is to engage and inform the community on the progress of Single Touch Payroll, and work through operational matter and change issues.

  • Single Touch Payroll readiness working group

The purpose of this group is to work collaboratively to help shape and influence delivery of the change management approach including stakeholder engagement, communication, business readiness and transition. This is a closed group.

  • Single Touch Payroll small business pilot working group

The purpose of this group is to work collaboratively to provide guidance and shape input to engaging small business and influence the design and implementation of the pilot.

See also:

Contact us

For further information and to provide feedback email the Single Touch Payroll mailbox.

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