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5th February 2024

A Guide to Payroll Automation: Benefits, Costs & Tips

Automating your payroll can simplify your processes, enhance accuracy, save your business time and money and keep you compliant with the latest rules and regulations. No matter the size of your business, everyone can benefit from payroll automation. That’s why this guide will explore everything you need to know about payroll automation and how it can benefit your business.

What is automated payroll?

Automated payroll aims to streamline and simplify payroll processes. It can help with calculations, reporting and paying employee salaries and is implemented using payroll software.

The benefits of automated payroll

There are a variety of benefits of automated payroll, including:

Reduced payroll errors

When you automate your payroll processes, errors should be reduced as you won’t need to complete as many manual tasks. When traditional payroll is used it’s more susceptible to human error, which can lead to costly implications.

Automated payroll systems calculate salaries, deductions and taxes, ensuring that all staff are paid correctly and on time. However, the original data you input into the system such as employee details and total salary need to be correct as payroll systems will use the data you input. 

Those who implement automated payroll processes benefit from an increased peace of mind that tasks will be completed correctly, on time and stay compliant with the latest rules and regulations. 

Saves time

Automated payroll can save businesses a significant amount of time as unlike traditional payroll software that requires companies to input manual data, automation does this for them. Automated payroll can automate payslips, reports, calculate tax deductions and pay staff within seconds. This can save staff time as these critical tasks can be completed accurately and quicker than it would if they were to complete them manually.

Furthermore, automated payroll updates reports in real-time meaning teams don’t need to worry about reports being inaccurate. This also saves time on the numerous hours it takes to complete paperwork which can then be reinvested in other business critical areas. 

Enhanced compliance

Automating payroll tasks can enhance your compliance as they’re programmed to make calculations and payments accurately. It can be hard to keep up with the latest payroll rules and regulations, especially if your business doesn't specialise in the payroll industry.

The prospect of compliance can be concerning, given the potential consequences such as fines, penalties, or even business closure. Payroll software’s ability to automatically calculate tax deductions and contributions minimises the chances of errors being made that cause non-compliance. Furthermore, their ability to generate accurate reports and tax filings ensures you pass any audit checks. 

Simplified tax filing

Streamlining payroll through automation not only simplifies tax filings by calculating deductions in accordance with the latest codes and regulations but also ensures compliance, shielding you from potential repercussions.

Payroll can be complicated, especially when it comes to tax, which can be overwhelming for any business. Having the ability to automate these tasks not only removes the stress of filing your taxes but also allows your team to focus on other jobs.

Automated payroll also has the ability to generate accurate reports and submissions that include things like National Insurance contributions and P60s that stay compliant with HMRC requirements. 

Cost saving

Implementing automated payroll can be cost saving as it reduces the time and effort needed for manual payroll processes. This can help businesses cut down on administrative expenses, as larger teams aren’t necessarily needed (depending on your business size) and tasks can be completed quickly.

Automation can also minimise the risk of errors being made. This helps you avoid any fines and penalties associated with non-compliance.

Overall payroll automation’s ability to save companies both time and money goes hand in hand with helping them become more efficient, compliant and maintain staff satisfaction.

Automated payroll features

Automated payroll can have a range of features, including:

●       Employee data management - The software will capture and store information on names, addresses, National insurance numbers, tax codes and bank details.

●       Payroll calculations - The software has the ability to automate manual calculations like employee salaries, tax deductions, National insurance contributions and pension contributions.

●       Built in compliance - Software can keep up with legislative changes and manage end of year tax responsibilities.

●       Automated payments - This means all staff will be paid correctly, each payday.

●       Integration capabilities - Many software can integrate other software like payroll and HR, allowing you to store everything in one centralised location.


How to automate your payroll

Audit your current processes or provider

If you’re thinking about implementing automated payroll, it’s a good idea to audit your current processes or provider to see where your strengths and weaknesses are. If you’re currently completing your payroll manually and in-house using a spreadsheet, automated payroll is a better option when it comes to completing your processes. This is due to automated payroll’s ability to complete many of the time-consuming tasks you have to complete daily.

If you’re facing any of the following problems it may be a good idea to switch to automated payroll:

●       Your payroll processes take up too much time.

●       You need access to more data and insights.

●       You’re unable to make last-minute changes.

●       You’re finding consistent errors.

●       You’re facing compliance issues.

Look for a new provider

When looking for a new payroll provider there are a few things you’ll want to consider such as:

●       How much expertise your finance, payroll or HR team has, and the amount of support they will need?

●       How big your team is and whether it’s likely to grow or decrease. This will require you to look for a software that can meet your scalability needs.

●       How complex your payroll processes are. Do you need a flexible solution that can complete complex tasks?

When you consider the points above when you’re looking for a new payroll provider, they’ll help you find the right software for your business. 

Collect your data

Before switching to a new provider you’ll want to gather your data ready for migration. This data should include:

●       Employee information.

●       Salary details.

●       Tax codes.

●       Historical payroll information.

Collecting this information will help you ensure the migration process runs as smoothly as possible and doesn’t have any negative impacts on your staff. 

Test your software

Before you fully initiate your new software, it’s important to test it first. You’ll want to make sure it can make calculations, deductions and complete other payroll processes in an accurate and compliant way.

This allows you to rectify any issues before the software goes live, helping you pay your staff on time and correctly while keeping your employees happy.

Implementing automated payroll with Payescape

Our payroll software allows you to automate a variety of payroll tasks, helping you save time, cut costs and improve efficiency and productivity.

We’ve helped many businesses, small, medium and large, transition from manual payroll to cloud-based payroll. These businesses have benefited from improved efficiency, the removal of manual processes and gaining access to a range of CIPP certified professionals. This has guaranteed them accuracy and compliance, ensuring their business runs smoothly.

If you’re looking to implement automated payroll, get in touch with us today to see how we can help.

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