This is a question, I often get asked. My very short answer to this usually is absolutely. Most online payroll software systems in New Zealand give you the option of acting as your IRD intermediary. This means that not only do they manage the payment of your staff, but they can manage the lodgement and payment of your Employee Deductions liabilities with Inland Revenue.  This combined with managing pay history, leave and employment records is a huge administration saving.  As someone who provides a bookkeeping service, I can’t provide this service for less than the fee you pay these payroll providers.

Online payroll systems have so many benefits:

  • The system is updated for legislative changes in a timely and seemless manner. If minimum wage was rising from April 1, using an online payroll system any staff on the minimum wage rate would have had automatic rate changes applied as soon as you login to the system post April 1. Easy – no disks to be found and no updates to be applied. It just happens. This applies for any changes affecting payroll – tax codes, tax rates, etc
  • There is a default timesheet for each employee that can be setup. Once each payroll is open, the detail within these timesheets automatically populate with the default timesheet you have set up for the employee.
  • The great online payroll systems provide superior customer service – depending on the system it is like having a payroll expert on your team.
  • The fabulous online payroll systems are providing app’s for your employees to manage their leave applications and change some of their contact details. These same app’s can be used by you to approve their timesheets, approve their leave and approve the payroll for the pay period.

You do have to go into this process with your eyes wide open though. Some systems require a letter of credit held at your bank for the value of your payroll – there is a cost involved in this. Some systems require a two day turnaround from the day the money leaves your account to the day it hits your employees account – there is a cost involved in this. Some systems cost more than others, so you have to assess each system on its merit.  If you are paying 1 person a salary and really need something to manage leave and employee details then you might choose the system that has the better app rather than the one that has the better expert service.

Like so many things in these busy times we live in, more often than not the cost of implementing something new compared to the opportunity cost of not doing it is actually minimal. Sure you could do it yourself through the IRD calculation tables, but is it worth it? Mistakes will happen (there is NO DOUBT about it), this is a long winded process which doesn’t make for processing varying hours very easy.  Processing payroll, paying your staff and keeping accurate employee records is an imperative part of looking after your employees and meeting your legal and employer obligations. However, none of this needs to be done manually. Sure you need to approve it but where possible you are better to minimise the administration of such processes.

Let Astute Mode help you figure out which payroll system would suit you best and help get you up and running.