Deciding to outsource your payroll is a difficult decision for a business. The fear of losing control, creates a level of unease especially when it is something that effects your greatest asset, your employees. This cannot be a deterrent though.
Benefits in outsourcing are well publicised, but what about the myths? It is important to understand these to ensure a smooth journey through the process of decision making, implementing and going live. Evaluate and understand the service of your future partner
When outsourcing, employers often think that they now have a partner on board who will take care of all their payroll matters. This is a common misconception in outsourcing as most providers will just do what you say. Make sure your provider is qualified to assist you and not just manage the software. A good payroll partner will have the experience to not only communicate important tax and legislative changes, they will able to assist with best practices so that you have the correct tailored solutions for your business and employees.
- Registered Tax Agent
Your payroll provider must be a registered Tax Agent. The Tax Practitioners Board list the tasks which are allowed to be offered as a chargeable service and it is illegal for a payroll provider to offer payroll services without being a registered tax agent. If you are relying on your payroll service, then you should make sure that your provider is registered.
- Meet the People
The BDM won you over on experience, quality and professionalism and was there every step through your decision process. You’ve signed and have been given contact details for the processing department. Outsourcing your payroll is a big investment for you and your employees. You should be partnering with a provider rather than signing up to a services model. Meet your provider’s people. Not just the BDM or Account Manager. Meet the people behind closed doors who are actually processing your payroll. The culture of your business and people are important and this should be of equal importance with your prospective payroll partner.
- Be Honest
Understand your issues and relay these to your prospective provider. If your provider understands your current issues, they will be able to explain how these will be overcome in using their software and services. Any current issues should be used as a deciding tool and not as an option of reduced cost.
- Prepare to Change
Embrace change. Rapid advancements are progressing day by day. You need to let go of what you have always done and incorporate modern practices that today’s software brings to the table. This will enhance the experience of your employees and allow you to spend more time with your business rather than the payroll. Working with your provider and challenging the status quo should be a driver for the move and make sure that all of your stakeholders are on board. Know that your provider is actively looking at new initiatives and developments so that in 12 months you are not left with antiquated technology.
- Don’t Rush
Once you have chosen your partner, the excitement can turn to let’s have it up and running yesterday. Take your time and plan well, especially if it is the first time your employees will be interactive with the software. Setup all the new bells and whistles and allow for the appropriate change management communication with your staff. Your payroll implementation should be treated as one of your most important employee engagement activities.
- Buying on Price
Looking at a price per payslip should not be your single driver when choosing your provider. Take into account all the benefits that your prospective provider’s services and software has to offer so that you can minimise risk and be compliant. When determining your cost, it goes beyond your current software and payroll salaries. Query management, manual paperwork, software shortfalls, payroll training, adequate staffing in an event of an emergency, must all be taken into account when calculating the true cost of managing your payroll internally. When comparing your current cost, make sure to take into account the true value that all the new benefits of the software and service will add to your organisation.
Make your outsourcing decision the right one. The decision to outsource should be to improve your operation, not shift a problem.