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The company-wide ramifications of payroll errors

Employees are your company’s biggest asset and, as such, they need to be engaged, motivated and developed to be retained. Employee costs are the single greatest expense within most organisations so having timely and accurate payroll is key and it is vital that it is an efficient and seamless process.

Every organisation continually changes and across any change there is a change / impact on your employees so the HR organisation’s biggest challenge is currently how they successfully manage change. HR now need to be able to translate change into a communicable format to enable their employee to understand why and what change will mean for them. The change will sit across all areas within a business but within HR the attraction, the on boarding and the retention of employees is one of the top challenges and poor payroll is cited as one of the key areas that can have a hugely negative impact on an employee’s satisfaction by eroding trust and inspiring doubt.

Historically payroll has been seen as a general, low level task. However, in our experience and the experience of our customers, this couldn’t be further from the truth. Running accurate and timely payroll consistently is a mandate, and the challenges surrounding it continue to sap the time of not only payroll but HR professionals and the wider organisation. Not getting the essential processes right only creates more stress and pressure. Understanding the key challenges and ensuring your organisation is properly prepared to deal with them – whether you make use of an in-house or outsourced payroll solution – is critical.

Whilst the last few years have produced significant hurdles for payroll teams, such as the decommissioning of EDI and the introduction of GDPR to name a couple, 2018/19 seems set to cast a net of real challenges both now and in the future.

Payroll is not a one-size-fits-all endeavour. There are legislative changes that impact payroll and there are accuracy issues, such as large organisations paying less than minimum wage that have had significant reputational impacts on companies in recent months. Managing payroll has become a complex and compliance-driven territory that can have rippling effects on an organisation when things go wrong. Many companies make the decision to outsource some or all of their payroll, allowing their HR function to devote time to strategic HR partnership with the organisation, helping drive productivity, leadership, engagement and innovation. Regardless of whether you in-source or out-source or whether your function sits in HR or Finance, it’s clear that payroll is only becoming more complex – with its apparent intrinsic links to employee engagement and reputation management.

About the author

Lindsay Aspinall

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