Payroll for Holiday and Caravan Parks
Article first published in Holiday Parks Management June issue 2019.
When I think of caravan parks, it brings back many happy memories. I was brought up on a holiday park as my Dad worked for the Haulfryn group and then later owned his own park just outside Allonby in Cumbria. I recall as a young girl helping in the office, which included submitting hours for those who worked for the group and then later running my Dad’s payroll. Whilst this seemed relatively straightforward back then, there are many more key considerations for a holiday park in respect of payroll and employment law to consider today and below are just a few:
- Seasonal workers – when to employ and what pay frequency to adopt;
- Site closure – many shut for the winter with some offering residential or an eleven month season;
- Working Time Regulations – in winter permanent employees will often work reduced hours but in summer will take advantage of the longer days, constantly cutting the grass for the tourers/camping sites and round the owner/rental caravans and lodges to name just one of the many tasks; do the employees opt out of the 48 hour rule?
- National Minimum/Living wage - especially if providing accommodation where rent is charged - to ensure the pay still meets the correct minimum wage rate. If accommodation is supplied and not charged for is it viewed as a benefit in kind?
- What payroll system will be used? This is especially important for the smaller, family owned business. In winter it isn’t as much of a chore as more time to process the payroll, therefore could perhaps use HMRC’s basic tools. However, once the season is in full swing, where is the time to run the payroll with all the potential additional casual workers? This is where a payroll service provider could prove invaluable; why?
- No system to purchase/lease
- No annual upgrades to do
- Just submit the hours and details of any new employees and the rest is done
- Pensions – no need to worry here at Armstrong Watson that is all part of the service
- Ensuring compliance with HMRC – again no need to worry, all done.
All in all, running a holiday park of any kind is a very busy and demanding job. As an owner why not get rid of at least one of the headaches?
This article was first published in Holiday Parks Management Magazine.