The benefits are clear, so why would a business not combine its in-house payroll and HR functions?
Some things just work better together. Ant and Dec. Fish and chips. Brown sauce and a bacon sandwich (we challenge you to disagree). To that list, you can add payroll and HR. You can find plenty about the value of bringing the two together online, not least on our own pages.
Essentially, it comes down to having everything together all in one place. Payslips, P60s, P11Ds, easy reporting on things like your gender pay gap and sick absence. That’s a powerful incentive to combine the two. When one of our competitors surveyed HR professionals it found they waste 10 hours a month updating and shuffling information between HR systems. Bring the two together and that wasted time disappears in an instant.
Employees like integration because they can see and—if you want them to—amend entries themselves. Overworked payroll and HR teams like it because it cuts an enormous amount of faff out of the day job. And senior leaders like it because more of their people spend more time doing productive things.
So why might a company not integrate the two?
The right time to press ‘go’
We’ve spoken to lots of clients over the years, some of whom are entirely convinced by the benefits but need to find the right window. This is understandable. Businesses tend not to have an ‘off’ switch where everyone can take a breather while the new system is implemented.
What they need, therefore, is seamless integration and expert support to ensure integration happens quickly and easily. We (and lots of other HR and payroll companies) promise that, but the real proof of the pudding comes not from promises made, but from the volume of businesses who’ve done it and found that the reality matched the promise.
The fear of tech
Most of us feel a little uneasy around tech. We’re all (pretty much) fine when it works. We’re utterly lost when it doesn’t. It’s understandable that businesses would want to stick with what they’ve got and understand over the fear of something they don’t (yet) understand.
It’s important to remember, though, that integrating your HR and payroll isn’t some vast IT project. It’s actually relatively simple. Much of the end result will feel very familiar. Lots more will leave you saying ‘that’s a great idea, why didn’t we do it sooner?’
Getting up to speed happens really, really quickly because it’s a very easy thing to get up to speed with. And the payback is more than worth it.
The reluctant gatekeeper
Many SMEs run a payroll and HR setup that’s been in place for years, often controlled by one person. It runs like clockwork, but there’s a risk that after so many years it’s also painfully inefficient and, should anything happen to your processor, risky. You might want to drive change, and some ‘gatekeepers’ are entirely open to new ideas. But some aren’t and can act as a drag on finding new efficiencies.
We’re not suggesting you should ignore their concerns, but it’s important to build your own understanding of what an integrated HR and payroll could offer so you can balance the two sets of information.
We’d love to help you do that. To find out more about the difference an integrated HR and payroll could make to your business, talk to us now