Andrew Conway, IPA chief executive officer, said the IPA, which urged the government further consider the initiative’s impact on small businesses, is pleased the government has decided to take a closer look.
Mr Conway said the government will use the delay to undertake extensive piloting across a range of sectors to ascertain the impacts and benefits of real-time reporting of payroll information on small business entities.
“The pilot program should provide valuable insights before implementation proceeds. Small business needs to be reassured that the benefits are real and outweigh the costs.
“Australia should look favourably at technology advancements that streamline business efficiencies but we should do so in the appropriate way to avoid increasing the burden on many small businesses.
"For some businesses it will work quite well, but in the case of many micro- and small businesses, we may be increasing an unnecessary burden,” said Mr Conway.
Mr Conway said it is an assumption and not necessarily reality that most businesses or their intermediaries have access to affordable cloud-based software with a reliable internet connection.
“A one-size-fits-all approach seldom works for the small business sector and this needs to be factored into pre-implementation planning to iron out problems before this initiative becomes mandatory.
“While it is a move to cut red tape for employers by simplifying tax and superannuation reporting obligations, the reality is that Single Touch Payroll has the potential to do the opposite for many micro- and small businesses.
“The government's decision to move slower on this initiative and engage in more consultation is a positive and welcomed step,” Mr Conway said.