The Ultimate Payroll Application Checklist

Wednesday, November 20, 2019

Payroll processing is notorious for being complicated and time consuming. From determining employee wages, tax withholdings, vacation and sick pay, and benefit contributions, to dealing with global compliance regulations and protecting confidential data, it’s a lot for one human resource team to handle. Errors – such as running payroll late, using incorrect employee information, or miscalculating overtime – can lead to hefty fines, taxes, litigation, having to pay back wages and other penalties. The impact goes straight to the bottom line – hurting both profits and the employee experience.

Many organizations are beginning to institute a fully comprehensive and automated payroll solution within their ERP to help manage the complexities of the payroll process, improve overall accuracy, and reduce outsourcing costs. It’s a win-win: automation reduces the risk of costly mistakes and creates more time to get strategic work done.

There are several considerations teams should look for when evaluating a payroll partner and application:

  1. Full, end-to-end integration. Look for a time capture and payroll platform that supports and automates the end-to-end payroll process to maximize efficiency and mitigate the risk of human errors. Make sure the solution integrates well with existing business systems and software – this will make adoption of the technology more natural and reporting on relevant data insights across the business easier.
  1. Rule groups. Compliance is fundamental to payroll effectiveness and rule groups are the easiest way to ensure adherence. This capability segregates the workforce into logical groups with common payroll rules, which enables efficient payroll onboarding and simplifies making changes to payroll structures. When a rule change applies to 40% of the workforce, these groups make updating quick and easy with the push of a button.
  1. Calculation engines. A cost-effective payroll solution offers HR the ability to maintain payroll configurations internally with excel macro-like formulas, without needing external resources to build heavy customizations. This also enables teams to self-manage changes to payroll requirements quickly to ensure compliance with collective bargaining agreements (for the North American market) or sets of terms and conditions (for UK teams).
  1. Effective dating. Payroll compliance hinges on being able to manage changes to rules and calculations over time. Look for automated dating methods that allow for both proactive and reactive changes to payroll configuration. If you’re negotiating a new collective agreement or set of terms and conditions and wholesale changes around employee pay need to be applied, dating capabilities allow the new configuration to go into effect on a future date and time, or can be back dated for the changes to be applied to previous entries.

Software quality, functionality and ongoing compatibility with other business systems is paramount when considering a payroll application. Make sure the solution you’re considering doesn’t just meet your needs today, but the provider is committed to keeping up with industry and technology changes, so you have complete confidence in your system’s ability to carry you into the future.

Like what you read? Learn more about what an advanced payroll system can do for you.


Rick Hutchinson, Managing Director LOKI Systems

Rick joined LOKI Systems in January 2019; previously Chief Technology Officer at Advanced Discovery; Co-Founder and Chief Operating Officer at Modus eDiscovery; and Managing Partner and Co-Founder of Vantric LLC.  With 17+ years of domestic and international business experience, Rick has a strong background in technology, operations, and financial oversight.

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