Import employees using an FPS file

If you have used another payroll software to pay your employees, it's likely you will have submitted a Full Payment Submission (FPS) to HMRC each time you paid them.

The FPS includes a record of your employee details. This information can be imported in to Sage Business Cloud Payroll to automatically create your employee records. If you have lots of employees, importing them can save you lots of time.

When importing employees from an FPS file, you should use the most recent file you have for the employees you want to import. This is to ensure your employee information is as up to date as possible.

You'll also need to following information:

  • Your company's auto-enrolment staging date

  • Your pension scheme information

  • Your employee's auto-enrolment status information

Note: The FPS file needs to be in a .xml format and must be no bigger than 25MB.

We've also made a video detailing the FPS Import process, you can watch the FPS import video on our YouTube channel

Importing leavers

If you want to reconcile employees that have left your business this year during your Year End process, we recommend the following approach:

If you have already done an FPS import

Do an FPS import for each leaver employee you wish to reconcile.

To do this:

  • From Settings, select Import Employees.

If you haven't done an FPS Import

  1. First, use the Manually Migrate option to enter your leaver employees.

  2. Then do an FPS Import for your active employees. You can do this from Settings, then Import Employees.

For more information, Manually migrate your payroll data

Create your FPS file

Each time you complete a pay run in your old payroll software, you must submit an FPS to HMRC. The process for creating your FPS file varies depending on your old payroll software.

For example, in Sage 50cloud Payroll, you create your FPS from the Payroll navigation bar, by selecting Full Payment Submission. In Sage Instant Payroll, you select Pay Employees then Full Payment Submission (FPS).

Find your FPS file

If you need help finding your most recent FPS file and you're not currently using a Sage product, you should refer to your existing provider for more information.

If you are using Sage 50cloud Payroll

  1. From e-Submissions select FPS Viewer.
  2. Select the FPS you want to export then Export XML.

You can find more detailed instructions on the Sage 50cloud Payroll Help Centre.

If you are using Sage Instant Payroll

  1. From RTI Submissions select FPS Viewer.
  2. Select the FPS you want to export then Export XML.

You can find more detailed instructions on the Sage Instant Payroll Help Centre.

Finding your most recent FPS file

To find your most recent submission, for both Sage Instant and Sage 50cloud Payroll, the filename is SgeFPS-<YEAR>-<MONTH>-<DAY>-<HOUR>-<MINUTE>-<SECONDS>.xml, for example:

SgeFPS-2021-02-03-13-22-05.xml

Import your FPS file

When you first open Sage Business Cloud Payroll you are given three ways to set up your company. To begin the process of importing your FPS, select Import FPS.

If you can't find your FPS file, if it's in the wrong format or if the file is too big, refer to the Find your FPS file section above.

Follow the steps in the steps as instructed, selecting Next, Confirm and Complete Import as required.

Note: Not all fields in the FPS file can be imported as some are not supported by Sage Business Cloud Payroll.

Migrate only Employee Details

During the import process, you can choose to just migrate your employee details and not import any of their year to date values. This is worth considering if you are migrating your employees at the start of a new tax year.

Check and update your employee information

The final stage of the FPS import process is to review the imported employees and add any information not included in the import.

You must update your imported employees with a start date and information from the sections below before processing a pay run.

To help you do this, we've created a checklist that links you to the relevant area of Sage Business Cloud Payroll.

Pay days

This is when and how often you want to pay your employees.

To set this up, for each pay schedule that you use for the employees you've imported:

  1. Go to Settings, then click Calendar Settings.
  2. Click the relevant calendar, then complete the following information:
Pay Day Choose the day of the week you want to pay your employees.
Pay On Monthly only. Choose one of the following options:

  • Same day of the month – If you want to pay your employees on the same date each month, choose this option then choose the date.
  • Last day of the month – If you want to pay your employees on the last working day of each month, select this option.
First Pay Run

From the calendar, click the date you want to first pay your employees. You can only choose dates for the day you selected. For Monthly calendars, select the first month you would like to pay your employees.

You must set your payroll calendar date for the period after your imported FPS file.

Avoid Public Holidays and Weekends If you select this check box, whenever a pay day falls on a public holiday or weekend, the pay date defaults to the previous working day.
  1. Save your changes.

Opening balances

These are the values held on the employee record, carried over from your previous software. You need to check they match what you last had for the employee before they were imported.

If your employee became a director during the current tax year, you need to manually update their Directors NIC values in their opening balances tab. You can get these values from your previous payroll software.

To check these values, for each employee you've imported:

  1. From the Employees tab, select the employee you want to check then Edit.

  2. From the Opening Balances tab, check the following information is correct:
    Taxable Pay This EmploymentThe employee’s taxable gross pay received so far this tax year, for this employment including any statutory payment values received.

    If the employee started work during this tax year, this value is for the current employment only. You should add the P45 value to the Started During This Tax Year section.
    Tax This EmploymentThe amount of tax paid to date by the employee in this tax year.

    If the employee started during the tax year, this value is for the current employment only. You should add the P45 value to the Started During This Tax Year section.
    NI Category

    The employee’s national insurance (NI) category. You can record up to three NI categories, if necessary.

    If your employee has had multiple NI categories in the current tax year, make sure their current NI category is selected in the “Current Tax Details” section of the Employee Details tab.

    NICable EarningsThe employee’s total gross pay for national insurance (NI) to date. Unless the employee has received any payments which were not subject to NI, this should be the same as the total gross pay.
    Total EE NI PaidTotal national insurance (NI) paid by the employee to date this tax year for the current NI category.
    Total ER NI PaidTotal national insurance (NI) paid by the employer on the employee’s behalf to date this tax year for the current NI category. You get this value by subtracting the employees NI from the total NI.
    Earnings at LELThe employee’s earnings up to the Lower Earnings limit.
    Earnings LEL to PT The employee’s earning above the Lower Earning Limit (LEL) and up to the Primary Threshold (PT).
    Earnings PT to UELThe employee’s earnings above the Primary Threshold (PT) and up to the Upper Earnings Limit (UEL).

Previous employment values

If you have new employees that have worked elsewhere in the current tax year, you need to include this information.

To enter this, for each applicable employee you've imported:

  1. From the Employees tab, select the employee you want to check then Edit.

  2. From the Opening Balances tab, select the started employment this tax year check box, then select the relevant starting basis:
Employee Declaration: P45 If the employee had a previous employer in this tax year but has left that employment and has provided you with the P45 Part 3, choose this option.

Then enter the following additional information:

  • Leaving Date – The date the employee left their most recent previous employment in this tax year.
  • Tax Code – The employee’s tax code from the previous payroll system.
  • Total Pay to Date – Their total taxable pay to date from their previous employment during this tax year.
  • Calculated P11 Tax – Their total tax recorded from their previous employment during this tax year.
Employee Declaration: P46 If the employee started working for you during this tax year and completed a P46, choose this option.

  • Leaving Date – The date the employee left their most recent previous employment in this tax year.
  • Tax Code – The employee’s tax code from the previous payroll system.

Statutory pay recovery & compensation

You need to enter this if you had any child related statutory absence payments for your employees in the current tax year:

  1. From the Migrate Payroll Data - Employer Values screen, enter the amount recovered so far in the current tax year in the relevant boxes.

  2. Save your changes.

Working patterns

If your employees do not work Monday to Friday, you must specify when they work before processing a pay run.

To enter this, for each applicable employee you've imported:

  1. From the Employees tab, select the employee you want to check then Edit.
  2. From the Working Patterns tab, choose one of the following options from the Working Pattern Type drop-down list:
    • Monday – Friday – if the employee works a standard Monday – Friday week.
    • Custom 1 Week – if the employee’s working pattern repeats weekly.
    • Custom 2 Weeks – if the working pattern repeats every 2 weeks.
    • Custom 3 Weeks – if the working pattern repeats every 3 weeks.
    • Custom 4 Weeks – if the working pattern repeats every 4 weeks.
  1. In the Week Starting On calendar, specify the Sunday of the week on which you want this working pattern to start.
    A working pattern must always begin on a Sunday.
  1. Select the days of each of the weeks in the custom pattern that are working days for this employee.
  2. Save your changes.

Student loan deductions

If any of your imported employees have an active student loan and need to make repayments, you need to enter this information on their employee record.

To enter this, for each applicable employee:

  1. From the Employees tab, select the employee you want to update then Edit.
  2. From the Opening Balances tab, select the Has paid student loan repayments in this tax year check box then enter the total value of these repayments for the tax year to date.
  3. Save your changes.

Set up employer pensions

If you have employees that are members of a pension scheme that you haven't yet set up in Sage Business Cloud Payroll, you first need to set the pension scheme up.

From the Pensions tab, confirm your staging date and add your pension scheme details. If you aren't sure what to enter here, contact your pension provider.

Note: If automatic enrolment applies to your business, you must enter a staging date before processing your first pay run.

For help entering the details of your existing pension scheme, select the appropriate provider:

Assign employees to a pension plan

Once you've set up the pension scheme, you need to assign any applicable employees to the scheme before processing your next pay run.

It's really important to accurately record your employee's auto-enrolment status and assign them to the correct pension plan. If you do not enter the correct information, it can cause a failed pension submission.

To assign an employee to a pension scheme:

  1. From the Employees tab, select the employee you want to check then Edit.

  2. From the Workplace Pensions tab, select the Pension Provider details as required.

    Exclude from Auto Enrolment If your employee should be excluded from Auto Enrolment, select this check box.
    Status

    Note: If your employee has already been enrolled with your company, you must enter the correct status. Selecting the wrong status can result in a duplicate enrolment file and failed submissions.

    Select from the following options, then enter a date that applies to the status:

    Enrolled: Employee has been assessed and assigned to a pension plan.

    Not Enrolled: Employee hasn't met the eligibility criteria for Auto Enrolment, but can choose to opt in to a pension scheme.

    Joined: Employee has chosen to join a pension scheme. They were not auto-enrolled into the pension, as they generally earn less than £6,240 per year or £520 per month.

    Postponed: Employee has been delayed by Auto Enrolment for up to 3 months. After the 3 month period, the employee must join the pension scheme again if they meet the criteria for Auto Enrolment.

    Opted In: Employee has chosen to opt in to a pension scheme. They were not auto enrolled into the pension, as they generally earns less than £10,000 per year or £833 per month.

    Opted Out: Employee has decided to leave the pension scheme after being Auto Enrolled or Opted In.

    Ceased Membership: Employee has left the pension scheme after the opt out window had ended.

    Not Assessed: Employee hasn't been paid yet or the company has not reached the Staging/Duties start date.

    Pension Scheme

    Select the pension scheme this employee is part of.

    The available schemes are based on the pensions you have set up for this company.

    Pension Plan Each pension scheme can have different Pension Plans. These can have different contribution rates and tax statuses.
    Payment Source This option is for NEST pensions only. This is where you make the contribution payments to your pension provider from. It's usually a bank or building society.
    Pension Provider ID

    Note: If your employee is already a member of this pension scheme you must enter their provider ID accurately. Your pension provider uses this ID to match your employee with payments you made before using SBC Payroll.

    This is a unique identifier for an employee on the NEST or Smart pension schemes.

    It can be found on the relevant pension provider website.

    For NEST, it’s known as Application identifier.

    For Smart, it’s known as External ID.

  3. Save your changes.

Import multiple FPS files

If you have employees that have been included on different Full Payment Submissions to HMRC, for example if they had different pay frequencies, you may need to import more than one FPS file.

To do this, from the FPS import - employee information screen, select the link in the confirmation message.

This starts the import process again.

If required, the option can also be found by clicking Settings and then click Import FPS File.