6 reasons your HR and payroll struggled through Covid-19

2 July 2020 - Reading time: 5 Minutes

Outsourcing

It’s fair to say that HR and Payroll teams have been tested as the Covid-19 pandemic unfolded. But after several months of firefighting, many organisations recognise that they need to make significant changes to their payroll and HR operations.

1. You’re reliant on on-premise systems

Organisations with cloud-based HR and payroll systems had an advantage when the ‘lockdown’ measures were announced, and employees were told to work from home. But it was a different story for organisations who were still using on-premise systems. Employees that needed to work from fixed locations to access payroll systems through their desktops struggled and their payroll operations were significantly disrupted. The solution: Upgrade your payroll and HR tech to a cloud-based system. Cloud-based systems are more reliable and secure compared to on-premise equipment. You can rest assured that your employees can log on safely at home.

2. You didn’t understand new legislation

The UK government announced measures to keep businesses afloat and help employees. Yet the guidelines around furlough and statutory sick pay have been challenging. Plus, understanding how this impacted annual leave, pension contributions and benefits and rewards. Without in-depth legislative knowledge, many organisations struggled to process employees’ pay correctly and were at risk of breaching employment laws.

The solution: Work with a payroll partner who has extensive knowledge of employment law and regulations. For example, SD Worx’s Managed Payroll team supported several of our customers through setting up and making their furlough claim. 

3. You couldn’t keep up with the increased workload

Ensuring that your employees get paid is the number one rule of business. Yet, organisations are guilty of relying on a small team of people to look after payroll operations. When multiple people in the team had to take time off work, either due to coronavirus or caring for dependents, the whole payroll operation suffered.

The solution: By outsourcing your payroll, you’re scaling up your payroll operations and you can adapt more quickly to change. SD Worx’s Managed Payroll team acts as an extension of your in-house team taking care of the day to day operations for you. For example, our team of payroll pioneers helped a customer add hundreds of new starters onto their payroll system, so they got paid on time. This would have been a huge strain on the customer if they were relying on their in-house team.

4. You couldn’t keep track absences

Throughout the pandemic, HR teams dealt with an influx of new types of absences, from confirmed coronavirus cases and furloughed workers. These new absences were on top of the usual types of absence such as annual leave, maternity leave and general illness. The increased workload and pressure meant that absences were reported incorrectly, leading to inaccurate employee pay and incorrect reporting. 


The solution: By choosing an HR system that is integrated with payroll, you can record absences and automatically send this data to payroll. This will help to process employee wages accurately and on time. Plus, you can use the payroll data to report on absences.

5. There was an increase in human errors

When organisations reply on manual processes and outdated systems, they are more prone to human error. Plus, in busy times, it’s natural that more mistakes occur. Your staff are stressed and want to blast through their to-do lists.

The solution: By switching to intelligent automated software, you can reduce the risk of human errors and increase compliance. SD Worx payroll software helps you save time and reduce inaccuracies

6. You didn’t have a robust business continuity plan

Did your organisation have a robust business continuity strategy or were you just winging it? If you had one in place, how often did you test it out and improve on the processes? It seems obvious, but to stay operationally resilient you must test your HR and payroll processes regularly.

The solution: If you aren’t sure how resilient your payroll operations are, you should take part in a payroll efficiency review. We’re offering a payroll review which assess your payroll. The efficiency review is free and will be conducted virtually. Find out more.

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