November 6 2012.

Up to 250,000 employers are set to join the Real Time Information in PAYE (RTI) pilot between now and 31 March 2013. In April 2013, employers will start to send PAYE data electronically to HM Revenue & Customs (HMRC) each time they pay their employees as part of routine payroll processes, rather than sending a separate return at the end of the year. Returns will include details of all employees' pay, tax and deductions.

David Gauke, Exchequer Secretary to the Treasury, said: "RTI will improve the operation of PAYE and reduce administrative burdens on employers by £300 million every year. It will also provide up to date information about wages and tax for the forthcoming Universal Credit, so eligible employees and pensioners will get the right amount of benefits."

Ruth Owen, HMRC's Director General Personal Tax, said: "The pilot continues to go very well and remains on track. We started with just 10 employers in April and now have over 1,800 PAYE schemes successfully submitting PAYE returns in real time, with more than 1.97 million individual records. The employers involved are giving us some excellent feedback and this latest expansion builds on growing external confidence from this success.

"With a wide range of employers in the pilot, of varying sizes -including micro businesses and SMEs - using commercial software, payroll services and HMRC's Basic PAYE Tools, we are confident that the system will work smoothly and that our guidance and support products give customers the help and guidance needed. We are learning all the time from the pilot, to improve the way we roll out to all employers next year.

"The main thing now is that those employers not in the pilot do not delay but start to prepare for April 2013 now, for example, by checking their software will be updated and employee data is accurate and up to date. We have a communication campaign planned for the next few months to make sure every employer knows what to do to be ready for RTI in April next year."