When you choose the right provider, payroll software saves lots of time and simplifies the common complexities of payroll. Even for small and medium sized businesses, the task of paying each employee can be complex and intricate, with many factors that absolutely need to be done correctly – factors such as pay grades, pay frequencies, holidays and absences, overtime, parenting leave, pensions, expenses, earnings attachments and taxation. Your payroll software solution needs to come with features to handle these things, and handle them as well as possible. Let’s take a look at them.
1. Employers and Employees
Payroll software is primarily charged on the number of employees within the business. While many solutions are capped at a maximum employee number, unlimited employee payroll is available; important for larger businesses with many employees and increasing employee numbers. For payroll companies, unlimited employer payroll is available.
2. Employee Frequency
An important feature is choice in pay frequency, as this lets your business handle different payroll structures (weekly, monthly, fortnightly, 4-weekly) and end of year payments. Software should also be able to keep on top of new employees and leavers, take care of P45 and P46 requirements automatically, and calculate the amount of holiday provided in advance.
3. HMRC Taxes
A vital part of any payroll system is taxation, and any good software solution will import, create, complete and export all forms of employer and employee taxation, such as the P60 End of Year Certificate, the P32 Employer Payment Record and the P35/P14 Employer Annual Return. With an automated system, it is easy to see how much needs to be paid to the Inland Revenue by the company and the employees, with automatic calculations based on simple payment records.
4. Pensions and Deductions
Pensions and other deductions can be complex, so you want your software to support as many forms of pension as possible and be able to account for attachment of earnings and funds and manage things as automatically as possible, for example, calculating the right National Insurance depending on the pension scheme for a given employee.
5. Management and Reporting
All aspects of payroll require flexible and powerful management and reporting options, with the ability to import and export files in a variety of formats. For example, having the choice to export to XPS or PDF is useful for sending physical and digital copies of payslips, and the same is true for all taxation documents. Over long periods of time it may be necessary to access payroll archives and view and modify payroll reports, and a good search feature makes this easy to perform, and of course, keeps the records indefinitely.
6. Real time information
Mandatory Real Time Information (RTI) reporting will begin in the 2013/14 tax year, and you should ensure that your payroll system supports it and understand what the change means. You can buy fully supported RTI payroll software for companies of all sizes to keep up to date with the new payroll overhaul.