The Finance (Covid-19 and Miscellaneous Provisions) Bill 2021 was published on 23 June and extended the Employee Wage Subsidy Scheme (EWSS) to 31 December 2021. On 9 July, Revenue published guidelines to highlight the changes to the EWSS applicable for the period from 1 July 2021. The main change made to the scheme was in relation to eligibility.
Businesses who started trading before 1 January 2019 must compare their level of trade for 2021 to the level of trade for 2019 to assess their eligibility for the scheme. This will allow businesses whose trade was severely impacted due to government restrictions in the first half of 2021 to trade at higher levels for the second half of 2021 compared to 2019 and still avail of the scheme, subject to meeting the scheme conditions.
To assist employers in ensuring continued eligibility for the scheme, from 30 June 2021, all employers will be required to complete and submit an online monthly EWSS Eligibility Review Form (ERF) through ROS. The initial submission should be made between 21 and 30 July 2021.
Through ROS, employers will need to provide details of actual monthly turnover or customer order values for 2019, together with the same detail for the first six months of 2021. They will also need to provide details of monthly projections for the remainder of 2021 i.e. July to December 2021.
On 15th of every subsequent month during the scheme operation, employers will need to provide details of the actual results for the previous month, together with reviewing the original projections provided to ensure they remain valid. This can be summarised as follows:
Timely submission of the electronic form will provide assurance to both employers and Revenue that subsequent EWSS claims are appropriate and in line with the terms of the scheme. This, in turn, will reduce the possibility of employers claiming EWSS amounts to which they are not entitled and having to repay those amounts to Revenue.
Childcare businesses continue to be eligible for the scheme with no reduction in turnover or orders required. However, there is a requirement for such businesses to register for EWSS through ROS prior to submitting payroll for paydates in respect of which subsidies are being claimed.
As part of the monthly submission, employers (or agents on their behalf) must sign a declaration that the information submitted is correct and accurate with best-estimate projections for future months. Failure to complete and submit the EWSS Eligibility Review Form that confirms the required reduction and related declaration will result in suspension of payment of EWSS claims.
Childcare businesses and businesses who commenced trading after 1 November 2019 will have to complete a declaration as part of the Employer Eligibility Review platform on ROS to confirm their exemption.
For more information you can read Revenue's Guidelines on eligibility for the Employment Wage Subsidy Scheme from 1 July 2021 document here.
Join us Tuesday 27 July at 10:30 am for a free live webinar where we will discuss the enhanced EWSS eligibility rules and the requirement to submit turnover/order details monthly on ROS. Plus, we will highlight important tips to remember as you return to the workplace (and what mistakes you should avoid). There will also be a questions and answers segment at the end of the webinar.
What you will learn:
Since the beginning of 2020, Thesaurus Software has welcomed a total of 34 new hires. As a result of this significant growth, 2021 sees the opening of our new office. The purpose-built offices are at the top of the spectrum in terms of energy efficiency and are a huge stride towards Thesaurus Software’s ambitious target of becoming net zero by 2023.
What is net zero?
Net zero refers to achieving a balance between the amount of greenhouse gas we produce and the amount that we remove from the atmosphere. This means that we aim to reduce our carbon dioxide (C02) emissions as much as possible while offsetting any remaining carbon balance.
Globally, the built environment was responsible for 28% of energy-related CO2 emissions in 2019. And so, through our new building we hope to play our small part in Europe’s aim to be the world’s first climate-neutral continent by 2050.
Key features of our new building include:
Images of our new energy-efficient offices in Co. Meath, Ireland.
We have recently seen the gradual return to the office for our employees who have worked remotely during the pandemic. The excitement and energy around the new building has reinvigorated our efforts to reduce our carbon emissions, with the whole team eager to get involved.
While our new building is a huge step in our journey, we still have some way to go before we reach our target. Sign up to our sustainability newsletter for future updates on our progress and the steps we are taking to reach our goal of net zero by 2023.
Employers are well used to staff wanting to take holidays at the same time. It is inevitable that certain times of year like Easter or Christmas will be more popular than others. As we remain in lockdown, many employees will have saved their time off for when more restrictions are lifted, and they can enjoy their free time as much as possible.
With Hotels, B&Bs, guesthouses, self-catering accommodation and outdoor hospitality set to reopen in early June, we can expect a scramble in workplaces for employees to get their holiday requests in. While it might not be possible to please everyone and give them time off on their preferred dates, it is important that you deal with annual leave requests in a way which is transparent and fair. If they wish to, employers are permitted to specify when an employee should take their holidays, provided they give the required notice. However, this can leave some employees feeling hard done by and annoyed that they do not have control over the dates that they take off, especially if they are forced to take time off during COVID-19 restrictions. So, what is the best option for all parties involved?
Thesaurus Connect, an optional add-on to Thesaurus payroll software, is the simplest way to manage your staff's annual leave – headache free. Thesaurus Connect streamlines leave requests and leave approval. This is how it works:
1. The employee requests leave from the calendar in their Thesaurus Connect mobile app or from their PC or tablet. This means employees can request leave anytime, anywhere.
2. The employer (or the person who has been assigned to oversee the management of that employee’s annual leave) is notified of the request on the dashboard of their own Thesaurus Connect account.
3. The employer/manager can then either approve or deny the request at the click of a button.
4. The employee will receive a notification on their device informing them of whether their request has been approved or denied.
The most popular policy of granting annual leave is on a first come, first served basis. While this policy is the most fair; depending on the system in place, it can still be difficult to keep track of which employee requested the leave first. With Thesaurus Connect, you don’t have that problem as you will be able to see the order in which requests come in. Employees also have the ability to request half days or request to cancel leave which has already been granted.
In the employer’s dashboard, from the calendar tab, the employer can view a real time, company-wide calendar. At a glance, employers see which employees are on leave and the type of leave. This is especially handy nowadays when staff may be working from home and it is hard to keep track of who is off and who is not.
Using Thesaurus Connect to manage employee’s leave means less conflict in the workplace and less stress all round. Book a demo today to find out the many other ways Thesaurus Connect can improve employer/employee relationships.
Why not register now for our upcoming free webinar where we will discuss the EWSS scheme and highlight important tips to remember as you return to the workplace.
As you may know, we recently announced our very ambitious sustainability campaign to become net zero by 2023. To achieve this, our new offices are purpose built to be energy efficient, affording us the opportunity to record and monitor our carbon emissions. Following an initial period of review, we will look to offset our emissions with the ultimate goal of becoming truly carbon neutral.
To help raise awareness amongst our employees, we have established the Thesaurus Software Green Team which is made up of 12 team members, across multiple departments. The Green Team have been working on coming up with creative ways to make the company's operations more environmentally friendly. They also aim to encourage change amongst colleagues on an individual level, at home, at work and in the community.
In our first campaign to raise awareness, the Green Team celebrated Earth Day 2021 (April, 22nd) with a number of activities planned throughout the week.
As we continue to work remotely, we encouraged everyone to get involved and share photos of their activities online.
The Thesaurus Software Team getting involved in Earth Day celebrations.
We started off our ‘Earth Week’ with ‘Meat Free Monday’. The production of meat and dairy products account for around 14.5% of global greenhouse gas emissions each year and so we encouraged employees to eat vegetarian or vegan meals for the day. On Tuesday we encouraged employees to take a walk in their local area. On Wednesday we asked employees to unplug devices, cut down on emails and have a ‘digital clean-up' to save C02 emissions. Thursday, April 22nd, was Earth Day and to celebrate we had a live online talk from Dr Emma Reeves, Senior Ecologist at the Forest, Environmental Research & Services (FERS) Ltd who discussed reducing our waste, the benefits of living a more eco-friendly lifestyle and the small changes we as individuals can make to help the planet. Friday was ‘Fresh Friday’ where we encouraged employees to go litter picking in their local areas.
Earth week was a success and we accomplished what we set out to do, which was to raise environmental awareness amongst our colleagues and encourage involvement in the company's sustainability efforts.
We will continue our dedication to creating a greener future and reaching our goal of net zero by 2023. Subscribe to Thesaurus Software’s sustainability newsletter to follow our journey.