HR and payroll software equips managers, staff

Read time 4min 40sec

It is not surprising that over 80% of companies who took part in the recent HR and Payroll Survey conducted by Sage VIP and Synergy Group, in partnership with ITWeb, cited their organisation does indeed use automated HR and payroll software. What is a little unexpected is that 74% of respondents who said they do not use such a system, stated this is due to the fact they have too few employees to require an automated solution.

"By automating HR and payroll processes, businesses can reduce the amount of time spent on administrative tasks and managing compliance. An automated solution will take care of calculating deductions, generating statutory reports, and keeping accurate records, eliminating a great deal of paperwork," says Anton van Heerden, MD of Sage HR & Payroll, commenting on the survey.

He explained that automated HR and payroll software provides a platform on which companies can build employee self-service.

"Managers with access to self-service capabilities are equipped to perform reviews, appraisals and other HR processes in a more efficient way. Employees benefit from convenient access to HR services such as leave applications and historical payslips."

Van Heerden says an automated HR and payroll system is also critical in managing the business's financials and planning around its resources.

"It also helps businesses avoid issues such as payroll fraud, late wage and salary payments, or inaccurate calculations of deductions and overtime. A good payroll solution is thus a foundation on which any business can build better financial and HR practices."

The survey results were pretty much evenly split when respondents were asked if their HR and payroll solution integrated their ERP or accounting solutions. Twenty five percent stated their ERP was not integrated, 22% stated their ERP was fully integrated, while 36% of respondents were unsure.

Commenting on the benefits of integrating ERP or accounting software in a HR and payroll solution, Ashley Regenass, CEO of Synergy Group, asks the question: Until an organisation has a truly integrated ERP and HR and payroll solution, do you have a 360 degree view of your business?

"Imagine seeing ERP productivity per employee divided by hours from the payroll? Or sales by value and units against payroll cost per salesperson? The tight integration of ERP and HR management is a big plus for companies that make use of ERP. A company with unified financial and HR data benefits from accurate and exhaustive data for all its employees, and this is core to improving productivity," he explains.

Regenass believes an HR management solution that integrates with a company's ERP system gives a real-time view into HR productivity and costs.

"An integrated HR package will also help companies reduce the need to recapture data across functions such as payroll, hiring, on-boarding and retaining talent, and statutory reporting. Another benefit is the fact processes such as expense claims and resource costing will be vastly streamlined," he says.

Majority believes in automated HR and payroll management.

Almost all of the survey respondents (82%) think it is important for companies to move from a manual to an automated HR and payroll management system. Only 8% believe this is not important, while 9% are not sure.

Commenting on how best he thinks an organisation can plan to implement a strategy of moving its HR and payroll from a manual to an automated system, Van Heerden advises an organisation to start with an assessment of their current system (if there is one) and processes, and document their limitations.

"Evaluate how a modern, automated system could help meet your business aims and objectives," he adds. "Consider the effect a new or upgraded system will have on areas such as employee communication, motivation, engagement, retention and organisational culture. Also think about how a new system will impact on the processes and roles of the HR and payroll departments, line managers and the organisation as a whole."

It is important to demonstrate the benefits of upgrading current systems and provide return on investment calculations to the relevant stakeholders to justify the expenditure to implement HR and payroll automation, he continues.

It emerged from the survey that 64% of respondents do not make use of a cloud-based HR and payroll software solution and only 35% make use of the cloud.

According to Regenass, cloud-enabled HR and payroll software will improve user adoption, increase transactional efficiency and be flexible in line with organisation change.

Van Heerden believes cloud computing brings a range of powerful benefits for HR and payroll managers, enabling them to become more efficient while offering their employees and their business a better quality of service.

"Cloud applications are convenient, powerful and flexible enough to support the needs of any business, irrespective of size or industry. Some examples of how they can transform HR and payroll include the following: employee self-service for all; service mash-ups and mobility."

To view the HR & Payroll infographic please click here.

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