With National Payroll Week upon us, it’s a great time to appreciate advancements in payroll that continue to improve working life for everyone. From the 3-7 September, we recognise the often overlooked role played by the UK’s payroll industry in delivering first-rate payment systems to organisations across the country.

It’s easy to take for granted the systems and people which power payroll; they’re so integral to our modern work environment that we often forget just how valuable they are. The bygone days of pen-and-paper bookkeeping have made way to incredible modernisation. Today’s payroll services can calculate and file payment taxes, provide integrated time-tracking software, process it all in a matter of minutes, and all from employee self-service sites and apps. The continual expansion into new technologies means paying and picking up pay cheques is constantly developing.

At the heart of this progress is one simple thing: people.

Talented individuals have and continue to drive innovation in the payroll industry. As HR Director at ADP, I’ve seen first-hand how our teams examine the ever-changing workplace to deliver cutting-edge payroll solutions. Overcoming the next big obstacle to enhance payment systems has always been our goal. As new challenges from regulation and tax compliance emerge, we must lead in meeting them. As demands for greater data-driven solutions are raised, we must deliver them… and with the latest technologies at the forefront, we can.

Going into this year’s National Payroll Week, I’m proud of the progress our workforce has produced. The week is a celebration of those in the payroll industry, and in the words of the CIPP, a way of highlighting that we “do more than just push a button”. When systems work effortlessly, the work of the highly-skilled developers behind them can go unnoticed. Pulling the strings behind the scenes are dedicated professionals pioneering the next addition of payroll services. Persistently looking to further functionality whilst maintaining vitally important services is no straight-forward task.

The impact of this work is tremendous. One of our customers, Alan Kessock, Chief Accounting Officer at Pinnacle Agriculture, said that “people trusted their payroll for the first time in company history”. When employees feel the work they do is rewarded fairly and accurately, that same confidence is transferred towards the relationship with their employer. Financial security is key to employee engagement, and nothing disengages staff like late or incorrect pay.

On a more macro level, payroll is still the largest expenditure for UK businesses. According to the institute, it also constitutes a £4.46bn income for the UK economy through income tax and national insurance contributions. The importance of intelligent remuneration services has never been more crucial for sustaining efficient workplaces. Looking forward, I’m confident in ADP’s ability to continue delivering terrific results. Whether it be developments in robotic process automation or improved data analytics, saving workers time and money will continue to be focal to advancements in payroll. And at the centre of it all – the purpose of this week-long celebration – it’s the hidden talents that make it all a reality, the people.

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