Payroll is probably the most complicated part of Human Resource Department for any organisation. As an organisation you are highly responsible towards your employees to provide them with various benefits and clear taxation and deductions. Mistakes can result in unhappy workers and cause penalties from the ESI / PF office and the Income Tax Department of India.
So, if you are in the market for a new payroll provider then you’ve got some serious research ahead of you. You want to choose the best payroll service for your company; one that fits your needs & is suitable for your company culture. You want a payroll provider with whom you can trust with confidential information and rely on a dedicated support. You want a payroll service that can streamline your payroll efforts and deliver accurate results.

The following step would help you choose the right payroll service:

  • SAVE TIME : As a business you prefer to invest your time into productive activities and improve the core functions of the business. Payroll is a transactional activity which is best outsourced to professionals. They help Reduce in-house payroll costs & Save significant amount of time. They always keep you up to date with continuous processing and provide key insights and useful payroll related Human Capital Management reports. Additionally, employee self-service features allow employees to do a lot of the onboarding and upkeep that an employer or payroll manager may have otherwise had to do.
  • COST SAVER : Most payroll services cost less than hiring a full-time payroll processing executive. Think of the service as an advantage which helps reduce your head count and Human capital costs. By outsourcing payroll processing, which can include everything from calculating the payroll taxes, statutory filings to handling employee’s payroll enquiries, your organization could be much better off financially.
  • ERROR FREE : Payroll Service providers are professionals who take steps and measures to minimize manual errors. Payroll can at times get complicated due to leave management, incentives, changes in policies, travel reimbursements etc. You need to be sure that the service provider processes correct information and minimizes risk for things like tax noncompliance and errors.
  • REMOTE ACCESS : Cloud-based payroll means you can access payroll information anytime, anywhere—not just at your desk. The world today revolves on technology and everyone uses mobiles. The Service provider should have data stored on cloud, so people have remote access.
  • DATA SECURITY: Data Security is very crucial & important. The Payroll service provider should have Secured Server Lines. No organisation or employee would like their salary information to be seen by others and hence will need confidentiality.
  • CUSTOMISATION : The ability to customise the Workflows, the deductions, the process, the values, the breakups all require customisation to suit each organisation to its processes.
  • REPORTING : For Senior Management, Reporting & Generation of Reports are crucial. The payroll provider should have the ability to create custom report, provide useful, meaningful and Insightful reports that would help the management to data driven decisions.
    So now you know a few steps which would help you choose the right payroll service.

What’s the next step in selecting a payroll provider? Time to start a payroll checklist.

Before you confirm for the ideal payroll provider, identify your payroll checklist.

The payroll service provider should be able to do the following:

  • Does the service help in increasing the productivity & efficiency of employees & company?
  • Does the service Improve Tax Savings & Avoid Tax Penalties?
  • Do they have tax filing services?
  • Does the process Eliminate Payroll Processing Errors?
  • Does the Service have enhanced security of your data?
  • Does the service Ease Governance and abide by Govt Policies?
  • Do the Employees have access to a Human Resource Information System (HRIS System)?
  • Does the service generate New hire reports?
  • Does the service provide report analysis?
  • Does the service provide real time alerts?
  • Does the service keep you Worry free and peace of mind?

Once the payroll service provider Qualifies the above checklist then you Map your organization’s needs & requirements. This way, when you speak with the payroll provider you know the questions you need to ask & the answers that you would need to look for. Then bring an open mind for options that you may not have thought of but keeping in mind that it should benefit your business. Understand your company first before you try to understand a payroll provider.

Given below are a few questions that you can ask before you choose a payroll service provider.

  • Which payroll taxes are included in the service, please elaborate?
  • What is the pricing structure and what is the process?
  • What kinds of insights are available through reports?
  • Is a dashboard view provided?
  • Is the payroll service available on any device?
  • Is the payroll system customizable?
  • Is there a self-service option for employees?
  • Is the payroll system complicated or easy to use by employees and managers?
  • What kind of customer support is offered?
  • Where is the data centre located & what kind of security do you have?
  • Can the system scale to my business needs?
  • Which industries do you specialize in?
  • How fast is the turnaround time (TAT)?
  • If the service makes a mistake, who is liable for those mistakes?
  • How long does it take to fix a mistake?
  • Are there additional charges for adding or changing employee payroll?
  • Will the annual fees change or increase after one year?
  • How often will we receive reports?
  • Does the service include retirement plans?
  • Can you integrate with other accounting software such as Tally , Quickbooks or ZOHO?
  • What back-office technology does your service use?
  • What are the hours and means of customer service availability?
  • IS there a dedicated representative (SPOC) or will I always be directed to someone new?
  • Is there an additional cost to file taxes in multiple states?
  • What is the SLA?
  • Any other HR services included? (Core HR, Time & Attendance, Benefits Administration, Scheduling, etc)

Many companies will make big promises & claim their customer service sets them apart, so get into some specifics here. Determine what level of support you and your company will need to help you choose the best service option for you.

Hope this blog helps you identify & choose the right payroll service for your business. Cheers!