Payroll software helps businesses calculate pay for employees and ensure that payments are accurately calculated and delivered on time. Given the importance of payroll for any organisation that employs staff - including the owner(s) of the business – reliable and effective payroll management is a must. There are generally two options for the management of payroll, and that is to either outsource or to use payroll software.
There are many businesses that can save money by choosing to use software, instead of outsourcing their payroll requirements. Software is not always the most ideal choice for all businesses, however. As such, understanding whether or not payroll software is ideal for your business requires a clear understanding of your business, and how complex the payroll situation in your company is.
Think about business size, payroll demands, and cost-effectiveness
Larger businesses will often benefit more from software. With larger numbers of employees come more complex payroll demands, and this is where the accuracy and reliability of software become very important to avoid serious mistakes and ensure smooth payments each month. For example, smaller and medium-sized businesses can often manage the payroll using in-house staff, whereas a larger business with many employees in different departments may want to look into using payroll outsourcing services.
Think about the expertise available in your business
Companies that employ staff with computer and technical aptitude are in an ideal position to use payroll software, while businesses that do not are in a more challenging position. On the whole, any small company with computer-literate staff should be able to use payroll applications successfully, and there are some commercial applications available that are surprisingly easy to use and learn.
For medium and large-size businesses, it is important to think about the complications of managing payroll internally. While it is true that a good payroll application will be able to manage payroll complications as they arise (and even for small companies complications frequently do), it also takes knowledge of what to do in these situations, and the ability to apply this knowledge when using the software. Zero-hour contracts, attachment orders, creating payslips, additions, and deductions are just a few of the things that the payroll officer needs a working knowledge of.
Free Payroll Software
Sometimes it can be too time-consuming and expensive to run an in-house payroll system, and instead, it is a better option to outsource the work. Having said this, there are commercial RTI payroll software providers that offer their applications for free to businesses that operate with only a few employees. Then it only becomes a matter of learning payroll requirements and getting to know the chosen software – and some packages make it really simple to learn as you go along.
Now that RTI payroll software is required to handle the payroll requirements of a business, for any business that wants to keep payroll in-house, commercial software must be chosen – even when using HMRC’s Basic PAYE Tools. Whichever application is chosen, it is always important to go with HMRC recognised payroll software.