With the industry now having largely adapted to the new world of SuperStream from 1 October, I though it fitting to reflect on the journey we, as an SMSF Software Provider, have been through. It’s been a ride as we prepared to be listed as compliant on the ATO’s Register of SMSF messaging providers for Rollovers and Release Authorities and the collaboration across the industry has been impressive.
In our Product Design Team, saying there is a lot on this year is a vast understatement. We might be feeling overcommitted and wondering at times how we will get the job done on time, however, we are jumping into our challenges with excitement and dedication.
When times get a bit tough however, it’s the people around you on the same journey that make it all worthwhile – anyway onto my reflections.
SuperStream v3 – WOW, it was big! There were elements of this project that were unexpected, but we got there in the end.
From understanding the background and context of the changes, reading and digesting the numerous ATO User Guides; Message Implementation, Conformance Testing, Error Code Management, Message Orchestration, Verification Services Guides – the list goes on…There were our internal design sessions, user story writing, sprint planning, development, testing and deployment approval and then we started on our Gateway Provider testing, Government to Business testing and the best part; Business to Business (B2B) Testing.
I say B2B was the best part (probably also the most challenging at times), but this is where as Industry participants, everyone could come together as a group to meet with each other, and the ATO, to discuss the project every week. With our allocated B2B testing partners we met up daily over many months, triggered and responded to tests across all of the varying message types to ensure that the SuperStream system was working.
It is not often that we all get to collaborate on projects with other SMSF providers, and I wanted to make a call out to Yang He at e-superfund, resources were tight for everyone involved, but Yang put herself on the line and was the first to start in our cohort testing groups with APRA funds. Yang’s keenness to get in early helped everyone else as this work ironed out a lot of issues and helped smooth the way for the other cohort groups.
Also Ruby Noel at Payment Adviser, no matter what the circumstance, Ruby made herself available to help a range of different SMSF providers undertake specific testing for receiving Multi Member messages.
Overall, thank you to all the SMSF providers who made the project much more tolerable.
Largely, the process is working, the main issues that we are seeing over the first few weeks that require attention include:
When an SMSF member is arranging a rollover, the first thing for the fund or their administrator to do is ensure banking details, member records and Electronic Service Address (ESA or Alias) are up to date with the ATO. This can be done via the ATO Online Service for Agents (Tax Portal). The rollover fund must also be provided the ESA of the receiving fund, otherwise the process will be delayed.
In relation to Rollover Transaction Requests (RTR) messages, it is imperative that the Payment Reference Number (PRN) generated by the fund’s software is being used when making the EFT payment so that the physical payment can be matched to the Rollin message. Where the payment can’t be matched the rollover may be rejected.
Member rollover requests must be actioned quickly. A trustee is required to rollover or transfer the proceeds within 3 business days of receiving the rollover or transfer request (where all information has been provided). If there is required information missing from the request, there are 5 business days after receiving the initial request to ask for further information.
Lastly, thanks to Belinda Black, Uma Senthilkumaran, Ian Morgan and Joe Maxymenko from the ATO helping us all navigate through the project and a very special thank you to our lead Product Designer, Katrina Barry, who worked tirelessly helping others throughout the project and for her continued support post implementation.
If you're still unsure of how SuperStream changes will affect you and your firm, we've created a library of free educational resources.