Novopay Newsletter 13 February 2015

News for School Payroll Staff


Novopay News

13 February 2015

A message from Education Payroll Services

Welcome to the latest edition of the Novopay News. Each year around this time we receive a high number of payroll instructions and queries from schools as new employees are started and job changes take effect. I'd like to thank you for sending tickets in early for future pay periods and for responding promptly to requests from the Novopay Service Centre for more information during this busy time. This allows us ample time to process your instructions in time for the pay.

To help you to complete your SoY processing, we provide some quick tips, reminders about best practice for completing forms, and answers to frequently asked questions from our team at the Novopay Service Centre. School audits are also on the horizon with reports available for download Friday 27 February 2015. More information on the process is available below.

Happy reading

Deb Moran
Associate Deputy Secretary
Education Payroll Service

Tips for using NOVO forms

When using forms, we recommend completing them electronically by downloading the PDF file and filling it in on your computer, when possible. This allows you to take advantage of drop down menus that guide you to input the right information into form fields. This is especially useful for complex forms like the NOVO16t.

Also, we recommend you take advantage of the Tools to help you section of the Novopay website that includes Allowance, Department and other codes for use when filling in forms. Inputting the correct codes will reduce the chance of re-work later.

Detailed instructions how to complete each NOVO form are available on the forms page of the Novopay website.

Here are some general tips to follow for all NOVO forms:

  • Please ensure you are choosing the correct form for the job it refers to. Remember to use a NOVOt form version for teaching jobs and a NOVOnt form version for non teaching jobs.
  • Remember that the start date for an employee or the effective date for an employee change cannot be a weekend or public holiday date. Also, for a part time employee, this cannot be a day of the week they don't normally work.
  • If a part time employee is becoming full time or vice versa, please ensure to indicate this in the employment status field.
  • Remember that if the employee is a fixed term employee, you must provide an end date.
  • Remember to save the form to your desktop first before you begin entering data.

And during SoY:

  • You can continue to use the Start of Year screen through February and March to make payroll changes for employees who are returning within the current pay period.
  • You cannot use the Start of Year screen to make changes to an employee's records you have already restarted in the Start of Year screen. Instead, to make changes to an employee's start and end dates, hours, funding, LWOP, or allowances, submit the appropriate NOVO forms to the Novopay Service Centre.
  • To add, remove or make changes to allowances for teachers once their 2015 start date has passed, use the Teaching Unit/Payment Allocation/Allowance Change function in NOL (instead of using the Start of Year screen)found in the Change Category drop down menu on the School Selection screen.

Tips for filling in a NOVO16t form

We realise that completing instructions for Teaching Units/Allowances can be a complex task. We recommend you complete forms electronically when possible to take advantage of drop down menus that guide you to input the right information into form fields.

We often receive NOVO16t forms with incorrect data, specifically in fields 10 and 11. If you have submitted a NOVO16t recently, please check your email inbox. If there is missing or incorrect information on your form, we've emailed you outlining what information we need from you to process your instructions.

To help provide us this information, and for future reference, here are some tips:

What to enter in field 10:

This is where you enter the number of allowance or unit types that a teacher had prior to the change you are submitting instructions for.

If you are adding an allowance, please enter "0".
If you are removing an allowance, or changing the dates of an allowance, please enter "1".

What to enter in field 11:

This is where you enter the number of allowance or unit types that a teacher has after the change you are submitting instructions for.

If you are removing an allowance, please enter "0".
If you are adding an allowance, or changing the dates of an allowance, please enter "1".

If you're adding a Recruitment, Retention and Responsibility payment, please enter the dollar value of the payment.

You can access the NOVO16t online form here or submit instructions via the Teaching Unit/Payment Allocation/Allowance Change screen in NOL.

For more information please review page two of the NOVO16t form for detailed instructions.

Frequently Asked Questions (and answers) from our Novopay Service Centre team

The Novopay Service Centre team receives a range of payroll queries from authorised users, especially during Start of Year. Here are some common questions and answers to help you complete your SoY processing accurately and on time.

Q) Do you have to complete Start of Year processing for an employee on maternity leave?

A) Yes. Set up fixed term employees as if they are returning but book their MLWOP from the start date you entered to the day before they return to school.

Q) Why doesn't termination pay show on the First draft SUE report?

A) Termination pay is run over the weekend and will appear on your Second draft SUE report on Monday.

Q) Should I use LWOP or SLWOP?

A) Sick Leave Without Pay (SLWOP) is used when the staff member is sick but has no sick leave entitlement left. The first 90 days of SLWOP used will not affect Holiday Pay. After that, a Holiday Pay Reduction takes effect.

Use Leave Without Pay (LWOP) for other leave types. LWOP of five days or less will not affect Holiday Pay. After that, a Holiday Pay Reduction takes effect.

2014 Audit Update

The annual reporting and school audit process will start soon.

Based on your feedback, we are simplifying the process for delivering data to you, ensuring you get all the data you need in one place at the same time. The payroll information we provide to you for the 2014 annual reporting will be very similar to the 2013 year. You will receive the following reports:

  • School Annual Accrual Report (SAAR)
  • Leave Liability Reports
  • Overpayments Error Schedule
  • Stop Pays Error Schedule
  • Funding Code Error Schedule

This year, all reports will be available for download from Novopay Online on 27 February 2015. Copies of these reports can also be requested directly from the Ministry at that time by sending an email to Education.Payroll@minedu.govt.nz with "School Audits" in the subject line.

The SAAR will be in PDF format and the other files will be in CSV format. The Ministry has created a utility which will convert all CSV files into one Excel spreadsheet and calculate the totals that you require to reconcile your SAAR. This utility will be available for download from the Ministry's Finance pages from 27 February 2015.

We will also provide you with detailed instructions on how to use the data from the various reports to complete your Financial Statements. These will also be available for download from the Ministry's Finance pages from 27 February 2015.

As we did last year, we've been reviewing the quality of data available to you. In support of this process, Ernst & Young, in their role as the Auditor-General's appointed audit service provider to the Ministry, is conducting independent and objective assurance procedures across the payroll service so you can have confidence in the payroll reports we provide.

As part of this work, some schools will also receive an Exceptions report highlighting payroll issues or anomalies identified centrally that need explanation at school level. This report will be sent to you on 18 March 2015.
2014 Audit key dates:

27 February 2015

School Annual Accrual Report, leave liability reports and payroll error schedules with overpayments, stop pays and any other known errors will be available on Novopay Online

18 March 2015

Exceptions file is sent to schools

23 March 2015

Complete set of reports and exceptions has been sent to the auditors for the schools they will be auditing

31 March 2015

Financial Statements due to be submitted by schools to their auditors

2 June 2015

Statutory deadline for the Annual Reports to be submitted to the Ministry

(The statutory deadline is 31 May, but this falls on the Queen's Birthday weekend, so the date has been extended to the following business day)

The Ministry is committed to supporting you during this busy time. For more detailed information about the school audit process, please review the bulletin published on the Ministry's Finance pages: Update on reporting payroll matters in Annual Financial Statements.

If you have specific questions about preparing the annual financial statements, please contact your Regional Senior Financial Advisor in the Ministry.

An alert will be posted to the Novopay website on 27 February 2015 when reports are available for download.

You are receiving this newsletter because you are set up as a Novopay Authorised User. If you have received this newsletter in error, please delete it and accept our apologies.
If you are a Novopay Authorised User, and would like to update your email address, please download and complete a NOVO5 form and post it to the Novopay Service Centre. If you are no longer a Novopay Authorised User, please download and complete a NOVO5c form and post it to the Novopay Service Centre. It can take up to two weeks to process these changes. We thank you for your patience.