HR Tech Update: Payroll software in the spotlight

Updated: Aug 31

HR TECHNOLOGY: Payroll remains one of the most important functions within the HR sphere of responsibility, but it can also be among the scariest for generalist practitioners.

Even small mistakes can mean the difference between whether an employee pays their rent, or disappears with money worth 330 times their salary — as one Chilean company learned the hard way.


It’s understandable then for companies to think twice about shaking up their payroll structure, no matter how affordable and effective the latest payroll technology solutions might be.


Well, here are some reasons to reconsider.


Between changing regulations, managing records, new hires and attendance, payroll can be a lot. Software platforms can help to take most of the tedious parts off of an otherwise busy HR professional's plate. By automating key functions (but still leaving the HR team in control), most solutions (including Actpay and Spenmo) even help keep to payroll errors down to a minimum.


Payroll software solutions ensure that employees are paid the right amount, at the same time each month, boosting employee trust and morale across the organisation.


Most of the platforms are also flexible enough to adapt as companies scale, even automatically adapting to a different regulations and tax laws when an employer expands into a new market. Some will even link up with other systems like finance, insurance and timesheets/attendance programmes to help create a one-stop shop for a range of business functions.


Sounds great, right?


Well, some of payroll softwares solutions most tempting features can also have some downsides that should be considered.


Payroll software solutions will certainly save an HR team time over the long run, but there's plenty of up-front investment needed to ensure both HR and employees are able to use them effectively. The onboarding required for administrative staff is often a project in itself, and then there will likely be further training necessary for employees.


Adding new software does also increase the need for effective cybersecurity across the organisation's networks.


With all that being said, which payroll software is likely to be the right one for an organisation in need?


Cost is one of the easiest ways to narrow down the options. A good rule of thumb is to consider how the organisation operates, then speak to different vendors with this same setup in mind. HR teams in the market should be sure to ask if there are any additional fees for any of the key functionality.


Some common payroll solutions offered across Southeast Asia markets include Netiquette, Cadena HRM Series, Payboy and HReasily.


Any company looking to survive in the next ten years will grow to become highly platform-dependent. It seems like a hassle. It may even be expensive. But in 2022, when HR executives have to juggle an increasing amount of responsibilities, payroll software solutions can free up hours of time that are better spent on more high-level tasks necessary to keep an organisation alive across the coming years of uncertainty.



HR Tech Update, by Chief of Staff Asia's Technology Editor Ellia Pikri, appears every Thursday from 6:00am.

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