The Challenges & Complexities of Implementing new Global Payrolls


Challenging Considerations:

Global payroll can be extremely challenging and incredibly complex. Understanding these challenges and complexities is both essential and necessary.  This is because different countries have varied, unique legislation on matters that impact payroll, such as tax which differs entirely from country to country.  There are also factors such as multiple currencies to consider, as well as complexities such as different languages and cultures which are thrown in for extra measure – as if the process wasn’t confusing enough already!


Avoid Costly Mistakes

 

All things considered, it makes selecting the right vendor, project path or solution extremely challenging. Many businesses make the mistake of deciding on a project direction without first investigating in detail what the best fit-for-purpose solution is, or without researching what is available in the market. Subsequently, the final global payroll solution selected will not always be fit for purpose. This can be an extremely costly mistake!


Set yourself up for success

The best solution should only be decided after considerable research and due diligence, which is why it is highly advisable to follow a detailed planning process to set up your global payroll project for success. Doing it this way will ensure that when you do begin your implementation, you will already know what the objectives are, and you can ensure that they remain aligned with the requirements of your global payroll.

As a minimum, you need to document your current processes and the requirements of your new global payroll process at a high level. This will make it much easier for you to understand what your new global payroll solution or provider will need to be able to deliver. Once you have this, you can then consider inviting in global payroll vendors or software solution providers for early engagement discussions and demonstrations. You may think you know what it is you need, but it is always worth discovering what specialist global payroll providers can recommend. Comprehensive global payroll services can vary from software purchases to Software as a Service (SaaS), full outsourcing or fully managed services (and everything in-between). It is, therefore, a good idea at this stage to talk to the vendors about their strategies for the future so that you can ensure your selection is futureproofed and culturally compatible with the complex global payrolls you need to deliver.


Challenges to overcome: Multiple Currencies

There are many problems payroll departments are faced with when it comes to implementing new global payroll solutions. However, dealing with multiple currencies is one of the most significant challenges to consider. The main problem with working across different currencies is that currency exchange rates are not static. They are a moveable beast, and they can be highly volatile. A sudden fluctuation in exchange rates could result in either your overseas employees suddenly costing the business significantly more than budgeted or your employees end up with a much lower income than they anticipated. The good news is that there are global payroll solutions that work to avoid these risks and reduce exposure, so it is worthwhile researching and locating a provider that offers the technology that can manage or at least mitigate the risk of these challenges for you. Once a system is implemented, it becomes much easier to manage local changes in different countries, allowing you to be compliant, cost-effective while also ensuring that you can pay your employees accurately and promptly too.

Immedis is just one example of such a provider that offers this technology. I mention Immedis because Adrian Morrissey recently discussed global payroll and jurisdictional compliance on The Payroll Podcast with me.  It is well worth a listen too! Whether it is Immedis or one of the many other global payroll providers out there, I would strongly recommend that you take your time to consider which one can deliver the solution that best suits your requirements. Different providers may have different regional strengths too so if, for example, 90% of your global payroll workforce is based in APAC, it would make sense that you selected a provider with particular strengths delivering solutions across APAC regions. This may seem obvious, but with many providers promising to be all things to all payroll departments, it can pay to investigate areas of expertise like this before selecting your provider.


Challenges to overcome: Existing Technology

One of the most critical considerations is then establishing the capabilities of your existing technology. Unless you want to start again from scratch, and most companies do not, it will be vital to find a global payroll system or solution that can integrate well with the systems you already have in place, such as your payroll, reporting, time and attendance, HR and financial systems. Make life significantly easier by analysing the degree of automation that the system offers, so you can make sure that your payroll operations are as efficient as possible. Making sure the user interface is simple to use and provides self-service options for employees is helpful, as it will save the amount of time that your payroll department has to spend answering questions. Finally, make sure that reporting from the system will be straightforward and consistent so you can have a good understanding of global payroll issues at a glance.

Challenges to overcome: Compliance

Another of the significant headaches associated with global payroll systems and associated payroll processing is compliance. If you are working across different countries, you will need to be compliant in many different jurisdictions, and this can be incredibly complicated. Complying with tax regulations can be particularly complicated. The Global Payroll Management Institute recommends bringing in specialists who understand compliance in different jurisdictions to avoid costly mistakes. Aside from tax, you will also need to comply with social security regulations in the country of operation. Bringing in experts can help you to set your system up correctly from the start, to avoid errors. Of course, locating payroll consulting or project experts is something we at JGA Recruitment can help you with too! If you need help, email me: nick@jgarecruitment.com


Challenges to overcome: People Management

 

 

Another challenge of implementing global payrolls is dealing with the people side of things. Leadership skills form an essential part of any payroll management remit, especially where large teams are involved.  However, going global will often lead to changes concerning responsibilities and job roles too. Managing change is therefore vital, especially if your team is afraid of automation. It is human nature to be fearful of the unknown but with evolution, brings opportunity. In reference to RPA (Robotic Process Automation) and artificial intelligence coming into payroll operations, focus on the opportunities it can bring (you can read one of my previous articles on the subject here). Responding to RPA positively will encourage your team to support the change. Automation (in my view) will require payroll departments to develop significant technical payroll expertise, which means that data inputting payroll roles could become a thing of the past. I believe that automation will raise the profile of the payroll profession because it will force businesses to recognise payroll as being a very technically capable function that contributes high-level reporting and analytics to support strategic decision-making at board-level. Evolution is always challenging, so it is imperative that you support your payroll team to ensure they are not confused or concerned during the implementation process.

Subsequently, I would advise adopting particular change management techniques to help avoid these difficult challenges, and I would recommend communicating openly with staff, so they understand why projects are taking place and how they can also get involved. This can help gain support and buy-in for the project so that it runs smoothly – which is a lot better than dealing with employee resistance or demoralisation.  In addition, when managing change, it is also crucial to consider organisational politics to get your stakeholders on-side. This is essential because if you can achieve stakeholder backing then they will not only support you, but they may also free up additional budget or resources that can help the project.

Conclusion:

Ultimately, implementing and then managing global payrolls is never going to be a straightforward task. Managing payrolls across different languages, cultures and time zones add layers of complexity to your payroll operation that can be difficult to surmount. Therefore, it is essential to be very diligent when putting in place a global payroll system or when selecting a suitable global payroll provider so that you do not get caught out. Detailed planning from the outset and then making sure you have the right people in place to deliver the project and manage it on an ongoing basis is as important as finding the right technology and maintaining compliance, as well as the change process. The devil is in the detail, and if you work hard to get it right first time, the chances are that your global payroll implementation will be a great success.

Good Luck!

As always, whether you love payroll or love HR, love what you do, work smart and work hard – just be careful not to overdo it.

Please share and comment – I will try to interact with as many as possible!

Why not visit our website where you can access more blogsFREE whitepapersThe Payroll Podcast and social content about all things “Payroll and HR”.

This article was written by Nick Day, Managing Director at JGA Recruitment – the UK’s Premier Payroll & HR Recruitment Consultancy

If you are looking for expert talent in the fields of Payroll, HR or Reward, then please call me or email me and I would be delighted to discuss how we can help.

Nick Day | Managing Director

JGA Recruitment | JGA Payroll & HR Recruitment

Email: nick@jgarecruitment.com | Tel: 01727 800 377

 

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SaaS JGA

What is Software as a Service (SaaS) and why I need to know about it

What does SaaS stand for?”

It is a question I was recently asked by a payroll manager who called me for some advice about payroll software, and it got me thinking – perhaps people are not as aware of SaaS (which stands for Software as a Service) as I thought? Subsequently, I decided to write this short blog to help others out there get to grips with what SaaS is and perhaps more importantly, why I think everyone needs to know about it.

Software as a service (SaaS) primarily refers to cloud-based applications offered via a software distribution model whereby a third party hosts the applications and provides them to customers online. Logging in via a web interface, such as Internet Explorer, Google Chrome, Safari or Firefox or another similar internet browser makes them extremely accessible. Recently, these types of software have been made increasingly available through mobile devices too. Software as a service (SaaS) means that as well as accessing data in this way via software, the data itself is hosted elsewhere.  Ultimately, companies save money by renting software instead of purchasing it. Subsequently, instead of your company investing in a server where the information is stored, with SaaS, the data will usually be stored centrally by the third-party offering the cloud-based service. Software as a service provides many significant benefits for organisations, and much enterprise software is now in fact delivered in this way, leading to time and budget savings for companies that adopt these types of solutions.

“Why do I need to know this?”

Advantages and reducing Capital Expenditure

You need to know as the benefits that can be brought about through adopting software as a service (SaaS) solutions can be highly advantageous for businesses and payroll operations of all sizes. One significant benefit is cost and time savings. In the past, IT departments would manage the servers that host the applications that employees access and that store the data the employees save. With software as a service, this is unnecessary, as the third-party provider takes care of all of this. This means that less staff are needed to administer and manage servers and data – which in the past could have been very time-consuming. For example, each time a software update or IT maintenance is required, previously the provider would have had to coordinate with your IT team, and your team would have been involved in making the changes and upgrades. However, with SaaS, the provider will manage these changes on your behalf. It also means that fewer servers are required by the organisation making storage more secure and the cost of storing it, more efficient. Servers can be particularly costly, so utilising SaaS can be a great way of reducing IT capital expenditure. Also, SaaS applications are unlikely to require the upfront costs associated with traditional software implementations because all you need is a login and an internet connection to install them. These server, maintenance, upgrade, and implementation savings make SaaS applications a very attractive proposition.

Affordability and Flexibility

Software as a service also makes software much more affordable for companies allowing many businesses to access software that they just would not have had the financial resources to obtain in the past. Traditionally, the software has been sold by licences that are then associated with specific users or computers in an office. However, due to the way that the data is stored centrally, both hardware and software licence costs can now be much lower, making this a much more affordable option for business users. Another benefit from a cost perspective is that SaaS business models typically offer applications on a “pay as you go” model. Subsequently, companies pay for what they use, rather than paying for exclusively dedicated and expensive servers rarely utilised to their full capacity. This pay-as-you-go approach provides incredible flexibility and options for companies because it means they can scale up and down, depending on business needs at any given time.

Mobility and Accessibility

Software as a service is increasingly becoming more mobile as well (i.e. software of this type is now frequently accessed via smartphones). Many companies have developed their SaaS offerings into versions that are specifically designed to work on mobile devices, rather than merely making their website available on the mobile device. The result is it makes them significantly more user-friendly for mobile adopters. This mobile advantage means that SaaS solutions can be accessible via smartphones to access anytime and in any location, provided that there is internet availability. The result is that employees can access the systems they need remotely, such as when they are home, out in the field or with clients. It also provides opportunities for more flexible working for employees. Considering the number of hours payroll or HR professional work beyond 5:30 pm; it is easy to see why the prospect of implementing SaaS solutions can be exciting to payroll and HR managers alike.

Integration

Another critical benefit of software as a service (SaaS) applications is the fact that in many cases these can easily be integrated with existing or new SaaS applications. The net result is that SaaS solutions make it easier for businesses to link up one system with another, passing data between them without causing major headaches for your IT team or indeed between HR, Payroll and Financial functions.

Drawbacks

Like anything new, there are some drawbacks to SaaS applications. One is a potential loss of control (traditionally the responsibility of your IT department) is now managed by the third-party SaaS provider. Another is connectivity issues or requirements. Since SaaS software is web-hosted, applications will not work if there is a problem with your Internet connection. Similarly, applications may also be slower than in-house server applications if your internet is slow or if servers hosted by the third-party provider are located on the other side of the world. Some applications may also be limited regarding function and features, so it is essential that the SaaS solution you are considering does offer you the features you need to run your payroll or HR function efficiently.

Conclusion

Ultimately, you’re probably already using SaaS without even knowing it, but if not, as you can see, you probably should be. Software as a service has tremendous benefits for business and can save a lot of human resources, time and money, as well as a great deal of hassle. Let’s be honest; payroll departments are stretched enough already so if SaaS can help reduce stress within your payroll department, then looking into Software as a Service for your business today could prove extremely worthwhile.

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Written by Nick Day, Managing Director at JGA Recruitment – the UK’s Premier Payroll, HR and Marketing Recruitment Consultancy

Nick Day | Managing Director

Website: JGA Payroll & HR Recruitment | Email: nick@jgarecruitment.com  | Tel: 01727800377

Download the JGA App: Google Android / iOS iTunes | Download Free Payroll & HR Whitepapers

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Consumers Guide to Recruitment

Consumers Guide to Recruitment

Consumers Guide to Recruitment

Your recruitment campaign should be a comprehensive plan detailing everything from who you are looking to recruit, when, where and how. As Richard Branson says ‘The most important part of any organisation are the employees’, and finding employees that are qualified, motivated and skilled can be a challenge if you don’t have a recruitment campaign in place. This guide is intended to help you and your business develop an effective recruitment campaign to maximise time and efficiency and to ultimately find the best possible candidates for the job.

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Why not visit our website where you can access more blogsFREE whitepapers and social content about all things “Payroll and HR”.

If you are looking for expert talent in the fields of Payroll, HR or Reward, then please call me or email me and I would be delighted to discuss how we can help.

Nick Day | Managing Director

JGA Recruitment | JGA Payroll & HR Recruitment

Email: nick@jgarecruitment.com | Tel: 01727 800 377

Mobile payroll payments blog

The growth in Mobile payroll payments and self-service portals

The use of mobile payroll payment gateways and self-service portals are growing in the payroll industry.

Despite this growth, many businesses are yet to embrace the opportunities that these types of systems provide. Payroll Lab argues that this can be down to data confidentiality concerns, in addition to the tremendously large processing requirements that payroll data brings. However, in some cases, it is likely that payroll teams are not even aware of their existence, particularly in smaller companies, where payroll is not the primary activity of the business. Regardless, the availability and variety of these solutions continue to increase in the marketplace, so I thought it might be helpful to discuss what they are and how/why they add value.

Looking at mobile payroll software solutions first, the great attraction of these is that they can be accessed anywhere at any time. Therefore, real-time information (RTI) can quickly be gleaned by anyone, anywhere and analytics can be right up to date across multiple locations too. Companies that offer mobile payroll payment apps may provide both an employer app and an employee app. The employer app will allow updates to be made anywhere, to any figure. Payroll can be stopped or started, or an extra payment can be added, just by swiping on a smartphone or other mobile device. Meanwhile, for employees, being able to access payroll information via an app offers opportunities for them to check on their earnings, view payslips and double-check how much holiday they have left.

This real-time approach to payroll can have some exciting and beneficial advantages for employees.  It can also help improve the efficiency of a payroll department because when employees have access to payroll details themselves (via mobile devices), it can cut out the need for payroll professionals losing time repeatedly answering simple payroll questions. Essentially, employees can look up the answers directly by logging into their mobile payroll apps. There can also be advantages in cost savings too. According to Core HR, in 2014, the Chartered Institute of Payroll Professionals found that 33% of companies were using electronic payslips and this was bringing about considerable savings compared with posting them. Allowing employees to access them via their phones makes this process even more efficient, allowing employees to access the data as and when they need it.

Payroll self-service portals bring similar sorts of benefits. An employee payroll self-service portal is essentially software that provides the employee with the potential to either view or manage their own payroll and/or HR information. The employee is given a login and can access the system as and when he or she likes. The benefits of this for a payroll function are two-fold because it means employees take responsibility for tasks that often the payroll department would usually be responsible for handling. Secondly, employee self-service payroll portals typically allow employees to view and update a wide range of different information. Some such changes include contact details, address details and banking information, among others – again this can save both payroll & HR departments time and resources. To prevent mistakes some self-service payroll portals, include approval processes – so while costs reduce (thanks to saving payroll departments time in having to interact with the employee in entering all the relevant details), there is still some outlay associated with checking and approvals. Generally speaking, almost all self-service payroll portals provide the potential for employees to request annual leave. Requests such as this are usually only approved once they have been passed to the relevant line manager for approval.

Many mobile payroll payments and self-service portals are available; however, before deciding to implement these types of systems, it is essential that the company understands the pros and cons of doing so. Regarding benefits, the likelihood is that productivity will increase, as will efficiency in the payroll team as the number of questions directed to payroll employees will likely reduce – as employees can look these up in the system. It is also thought that errors and mistakes can be reduced as employees will want to be paid so will make sure they enter their own data correctly. In theory, this should cut back costs associated with errors. In addition, there is a line of argument that employees are more empowered by being able to take care of these sorts of tasks for themselves.

On the other hand, these types of systems are not necessarily suited to everyone. One of the most significant challenges can be getting employees to understand how to interact with the system, and a lot of effort will need to be invested up front in training and understanding what is required. Where employees do not understand, they may try to muddle through without asking for help, and this could create more problems than it solves.

Nevertheless, if organisations can get past this initial stage, the potential for cost saving and improved quality with these types of systems is considerable and therefore implementing mobile payroll payment solutions or self-service offerings may well be worth the investment.

As always, whether you love payroll or love HR, love what you do, work smart and work hard – just be careful not to overdo it. 😊

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Why not visit our website where you can access more blogsFREEwhitepapers and social content about all things “Payroll and HR”.

 

This article was written by Nick Day, Managing Director at JGA Recruitment – the UK’s Premier Payroll & HR Recruitment Consultancy

If you are looking for expert talent in the fields of Payroll, HR or Reward, then please call me or email me and I would be delighted to discuss how we can help.

Nick Day | Managing Director

JGA Recruitment | JGA Payroll & HR Recruitment

Email: nick@jgarecruitment.com | Tel: 01727 800 377

Image Credits: https://www.123rf.com/profile_ximagination

Payroll Blog

Why the HR and Payroll Relationship is More Important that you think

People often claim Payroll should be part of a Finance function rather than an HR function. Payroll professionals process and calculate payments so it must be part of finance, right? Additionally, Payroll departments are also responsible for paying bonuses, dealing with changes in taxation legislation as well as a host of other important financial tasks. These responsibilities alone leave many with the viewpoint that Payroll is a Finance responsibility.

But is it?

At first sight, this logic may seem difficult to argue with. Some companies have even created a section within their Finance teams called “Finance HR”. A study of HR professionals carried out by Advanced Business Solutions found that there are many mixed opinions on this matter. The study was carried out both in the UK and the USA and showed that only 25% of participants believed Payroll should sit within HR. However, 24% of participants felt that Payroll should be a component of the Finance team (with everyone else thinking it should be positioned between the two or be altogether outsourced)! The thinking behind positioning Payroll within Finance is down to the fact that Payroll is cost-sensitive and is typically the most significant expense for most organisations. The payroll function is also very numbers driven. This makes a compelling case for placing Payroll within Finance. However, the relationship between HR and Payroll is a close one too, and maybe more important than you think.

Here’s why:

The relationship between HR and Payroll is essential due to the close correlation between the activities undertaken by each. HR has an instrumental role in determining how best to remunerate talent, and Payroll, in turn, is responsible for ensuring that approaches to reward management put into practice. This is a critical factor for defining the role between the two and for making a case for excellent relationships between them. There are numerous other examples of this, not just the monthly pay run. These include the payment of bonuses, as well as raises in salary. They also include the ties between firing people and that person getting paid as well as other areas such as absenteeism, sickness leave, maternity pay, paternity pay, adoption pay, starters and leavers and more. These are all areas where a good relationship between HR and Payroll can lead to a more efficient working partnership, which ultimately results in improved employee services provided to staff.

Another important, but linked concept is the fact that Payroll contains significant employee-related confidential information, often accessed or relied upon by HR. For example, Payroll information could be analysed to support HR diversity and equality agendas. These are employee-related areas that may be managed by HR but are intrinsically linked to data held and controlled by those in Payroll. If Payroll is situated within finance, it might be more difficult for HR access data to analyse whether diversity and equality policies are being productive. Offering equal opportunities or fair pay are just two examples, but there can be many more. By closely linking Payroll and HR operations it is possible to track correlations and put in place systems for reducing inequality. Together, HR and Payroll functions have all the pieces to put puzzles together to develop, analyse and implement extremely effective employee policies and initiatives.

Confidentiality is also an area where the relationship between Payroll and HR is intertwined. The decisions that are made around pay and benefits need to be highly confidential. So too, does the data that both HR and Payroll utilise to ensure that people are paid in a timely way. This includes data such as home addresses, National Insurance details etc. From a practical perspective, this is another critical reason why HR and Payroll need to have a close relationship and why that link needs to be robust. With new GDPR data protection regulations well on their way, it makes, even more, sense to solidify the relationship between HR and Payroll, if even just for data protection purposes (though of course there are more reasons than that, as shown here).

Another essential reason why Payroll and HR’s relationship should be a close one is the fact that decisions that HR make drives what Payroll does, and arguably more closely and in greater detail than decisions made by Finance. For example, Finance may decide that the budget for pay will not be more than a certain amount each year. However, it is HR that will work with managers to determine what people will be paid and why. Finance does not have an oversight of this, and arguably, with its intensive focus on numbers, does not have the close, in-depth experience of understanding the skills, knowledge and expertise that different employees bring to a team. This would make it challenging for Finance to work with Payroll supporting the latter on decisions made, or even making the decisions in the first place.

Ultimately, the relationship between Payroll and HR is more intricate and interlinked than might at first be realised. Getting underneath the surface, it seems clear that this is a relationship that needs to be healthy, robust, retained and nurtured, despite the pressure from some to locate Payroll in Finance.

As always, Love payroll, love what you do, work smart, work hard – just be careful not to overdo it.

 

Why not visit our website where you can access more blogswhitepapers and social content about all things “Payroll”. You can also download our latest Whitepaper: A Payroll Blueprint Towards Successful Transformation or our HR Whitepaper, Employee Engagement – A Critical HR Problem.

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This article was written by Nick Day, Managing Director at JGA Recruitment – the UK’s Premier Payroll & HR Recruitment Consultancy

If you are looking for expert talent in the fields of Payroll, HR or Reward, then please call me or email me and I would be delighted to discuss how we can help.

Nick Day | Managing Director

JGA Recruitment | JGA Payroll & HR Recruitment

Email: nick@jgarecruitment.com | Tel: 01727 800 377

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Blog

Master Your Stakeholders in 8 Simple Steps

A stakeholder is someone, or a group, that has an interest or concern in something. Managing stakeholders can be tricky. Stakeholders include different business partners, employees, senior management (the board), shareholders, the public, and lobby groups among others. There are stakeholders in most business activities and projects, and the interest each has can be very different. This conflict between diverse interests of stakeholders can make it quite challenging for an HR or Payroll professional to do their job efficiently. This is particularly true if one stakeholder thinks another stakeholder is getting a better deal. Managing stakeholders effectively to the point that you can master this is essential to achieving HR or Payroll success. Here at JGA Recruitment, many of the Payroll or HR vacancies we handle require individuals to have “excellent stakeholder management skills” so, here are eight steps you can take to master your stakeholders:

  1. UNDERSTAND WHO YOUR STAKEHOLDERS ARE – often mastering stakeholders is an activity that falls at the very first hurdle, since certainly, it will be impossible to master those that you are not aware of. Spend some time having a brainstorm to get to the bottom of who has an interest or concern in what you are doing. Stakeholders for HR and Payroll professionals often includes the managers and employees in the departments that are served, the senior management team, shareholders, HR colleagues and your HR manager, (among others). In a partnership environment, you may have many bosses so understanding the requirements of each and getting to know them well can be critical to ensuring you can deliver an excellent service in line with stakeholder expectations.
  2. PINPOINT YOUR STAKEHOLDERS’ INTERESTS – mastering your stakeholders will be difficult if you are unsure what their interests are. Sometimes, it may be appropriate to ask them, and in others, not – on occasion, these interests may also be closely tied to office politics. Nonetheless, if you can deduce specific stakeholder interests to satiate their requirements, then you can then find ways to manage these effectively.
  3. DEFINE THE LEVEL OF STAKEHOLDER INTEREST – while all stakeholders have an interest in what you are doing, some have more of interest than others. Those that have more of interest have the potential to be trickier to manage as well. You might choose to rank stakeholders between 1 and 10 with one being the highest level of interest and ten the lowest. This will help you isolate who may need closer management and why.
  4. ASSESS STAKEHOLDER POWER – some stakeholders have more power than others. This usually makes them more challenging to master, and especially if they are highly interested too, as they will want to know everything that is going on. Those that have more power have more influence. They can stop you in your tracks if they are not efficiently managed. Knowing who these stakeholders are and what they want is critical in mastering their management. The CEO has high power, but often may have relatively low interest in lower level HR or Payroll activities you are undertaking (unless you get their payroll wrong, in which case their interest may increase quite suddenly)!
  5. PLOT STAKEHOLDERS ON THE POWER INTEREST GRID – once you have all the information you can chart your stakeholders by the strategy you will take to mastering them. If they have high power and low interest, your strategy must be to keep them satisfied. With low power and low interest, you only need monitor stakeholders. Where there is high interest and low power, keeping stakeholders informed makes it easier to manage them. The most difficult stakeholders will be those with the most power and the most interest. These stakeholders need to be closely managed as they have both the power and interest to quash projects if they so desire.

6. PRIORITISE STAKEHOLDERS – all stakeholders are important, but some are likely to be more important than others in different scenarios. For example, if managing a problematic reward management situation such as a pay freeze, one of the key stakeholders may be the manager who must pass the information over to the team. Another significant stakeholder may be a key person with talent that the organisation does not want to lose. Understanding who is most important to manage in any given situation will make it easier for you to manage stakeholder issues more effectively overall.

7. DEVELOP A COMMUNICATIONS STRATEGY – mastering your stakeholders is all about communication. Letting your stakeholders know what you are doing and why and doing this in a timely manner will help you to manage their expectations more comfortably. This is because to some degree you will be able to control when they react to your activities by telling them at a specific time. Consider the power interest grid when communicating with stakeholders – not all stakeholders want the tiniest of details all the time. Your HR director probably does not want to know about one person leaving the organisation. However, they do want to have flagged up to them a potential employee retention issue across an entire department. Use some common sense with this.

8. SEEK OPPORTUNITIES TO PLEASE – finally, mastering stakeholders should involve sharing good news too. Finding ways to go the extra mile to impress your stakeholders can be useful for your career, and can keep those troublesome stakeholders off your back too. Being more proactive about helping stakeholders achieve their goals is likely to be good for your reputation, so it is worth looking for ways to do this.

Ultimately, the key is to get to know your stakeholders early. Failure to recognise who they are or what power they yield could be costly, whereas understanding their motivations and aspirations and supporting these could put you on a fast-track road to success and development.

The question is, do you know who your key stakeholders are???

As always, whether you love payroll or love HR, love what you do, work smart and work hard – just be careful not to overdo it. 😊

Why not visit our website where you can access more blogswhitepapers and social content about all things “Payroll”. You can also download our latest Whitepaper: A Payroll Blueprint Towards Successful Transformation

____________________________________________________________________

This article was written by Nick Day, Managing Director at JGA Recruitment – the UK’s Premier Payroll & HR Recruitment Consultancy

If you are looking for expert talent in the fields of Payroll, HR or Reward, then please call me or email me and I would be delighted to discuss how we can help.

Nick Day | Managing Director

JGA Recruitment | JGA Payroll & HR Recruitment

Email: nick@jgarecruitment.com | Tel: 01727 800 377

Image Credits: Copyright: www.123rf.com/profile_faithie

blog

8 Risks you take if you fail to track employee engagement and retention

Employee engagement is not a management “fad.” It is not going to go away anytime soon. One factor that helps the recruitment industry to remain as fluid is the fact that many businesses just underestimate the importance of employee engagement.

They focus too much on attracting talent and not enough time retaining it. However, the fact of the matter is, engaged employees who want to stay at the organisation are critical to its success. This makes tracking employee engagement and retention a must for a business of any size. Companies that fail to monitor employee engagement run a lot of risks that impact on their ability to succeed and build competitive advantage.

Here are eight risks you take if you fail to track employee engagement and underestimate your investment in employee retention:

1. You will have higher costs — it costs a lot to hire and train an employee. Failing to hire the right people and then to retain them leads to both the direct costs of paying agencies, advertising and management time spent recruiting. It also leads to the indirect costs of a less productive team while a replacement is found. In Gallup’s study of organisations with engaged and disengaged employees, those in the top quarter percentile in terms of engagement had 25% lower turnover when they operated in high turnover industries, and small turnover firms had 65% lower turnover.

2. You won’t know how many people are leaving or why — failing to track employee turnover issues means that you won’t be aware of core problems that are driving people to exit your business. This means you also won’t be taking corrective action and the problem will persist. An exit interview at a minimum can help better track specific issues.

3. You will develop a reputation as a poor employer brand — companies that have a higher level of employee turnover are likely to have a harder time finding employees. When word gets out that a firm is not a great place to be, and this is evidenced by high employee attrition, the employer brand is affected. The reputation of the company as an employer will drop, and this makes it even harder to attract and retain talent. Since people are increasingly seen as key to competitive advantage, this is highly problematic. These problems have been exacerbated by the fact that there are online review sites where employees can rank and rate employers, meaning that stories of low employee engagement can spread faster than wildfire.

4. You will have higher levels of absenteeism — people that are not engaged take more sick leave. Gallup found that the organisations that were in the top quarter percentile for engagement had lower levels of absenteeism. However, a study by the CIPD also showed that those that are less engaged have lower levels of wellbeing as a result, and this may be a cause of this absenteeism — as well as the fact the employees are less involved in the first place.

5. You will have higher levels of health and safety incidents — organisations that have a lower level of engagement have much higher levels of health and safety issues. The Gallup survey found that businesses with the highest levels of engagement (in the top quartile) had 48% fewer safety issues compared to bottom quartile companies.

6. You will have lower customer satisfaction and loyalty — a lot of studies have shown that customer satisfaction is higher when employees are engaged and retained. It makes sense that employees that are happier are better able to sell to customers, and dealing with a new employee each time due to a lack of employee retention is a frustrating experience for a client.

7. You could develop a ‘toxic workforce’ — actively disengaged employees can be poisonous. They become miserable, and as a consequence, they then try to make everyone around them miserable too. They are not just watching the clock, but actively causing damage to the company. If you do not know you have an employee engagement problem, actively disengaged employees will be spreading negativity throughout the business. This means any employees that were engaged could be dragged down by them, making any issues much worse.

8. You will experience lower productivity and profitability — ultimately for all the reasons already mentioned, such as a higher level of accidents, higher absenteeism, and increased employee turnover, companies with lower levels of engagement, are naturally going to have lower productivity and ultimately profitability. Other factors also feed into this, such as the fact that companies with lower levels of participation have higher levels of quality issues and mistakes, wasting time and lowering productivity. In the end all the costs add up and profitability is impacted. This has been demonstrated over and over again in countless employee engagement and retention studies.

The bottom line is that your bottom line will suffer if you underestimate the importance of engaging your employees and retaining top talent. It can detrimentally impact your company if you fail to track employee engagement and retention and as a result, it will become harder and harder to understand if you have a problem, what the issues are or the extent of them. The question is, can you afford to not track employee engagement and retention?

At JGA Recruitment, we base our success on our placement retention statistics (currently 95.7%), that is, how many candidates we place that are still employed 12 months later. We believe this is the true measurable metric for tracking recruitment success.

Thanks for reading.

Change

Change Has Nothing To Do With January 1st

As the owner of a growing business, I have to keep a watchful eye on events in my industry, in the market and on business life in general.

It always amuses me every year when hundreds of industry commentators come out of the woodwork, metaphorically turn over a “new page” and tell us how this year will be different to last year. Given the nature of change, this never comes as a surprise, and some of their predictions are fascinating, but I don’t quite agree with the timing of this information overload.

Why do we primarily analyse what we need to change at the start of a year? Shouldn’t we be making incremental changes to our activity all the time?

Maybe the secret lies in our inner desire to “compartmentalise” our lives into certain periods of the year (or the week). The summer is for the beach, Christmas is for annoying long-lost relatives, January is for job searching and naval gazing and Fridays are for winding down in the afternoon.

Some of these assumptions are holding you back.

December was one of our busiest months as recruiters in 2015, although there is no denying that January will be mega busy. Your chances of finding a role in December may well have been better than now because your voice would have been heard above the crowd. Now, the world and his wife want a new job. Of course, we will do our best to assist!

I find that the summer is a great time for bedding in different business strategies and starting to work with new business partners. Yes, it tends to be a little bit quieter, but this gives time for reflection, and if you don’t use that time wisely, the summer is over before you know it.

As for the January contemplations, well, I stand in the shower every morning thinking about how grateful I am for my life (but, at the same time thinking about how I could do things a little differently). No one stops being interested in improving their life just because January has passed. You don’t miss out on the opportunity to change your life just because your “resolutions” weren’t quite firm enough on January 1st.

I promised myself something on New Year’s Eve:
“I will give my resolutions every ounce of effort this year. If I try something, I will try it with all my being. I don’t know when they will come, I don’t know what life may hold in store, but whenever a certain idea appears, I will approach it to the best of my ability – Life is about stories and I intend on creating new ones every day”

It tends to happen that our dreams reside in a constant state of flux – the great big melting pot of life will alter and change them. What I do know, however, is that they don’t suddenly become fixed on January 1st. When you are aware of your dreams and open to the changes that life may introduce, you can make it happen on any day of the year or any day of the week.

Write it down, commit to it, and you have every chance.

Pablo

Counteroffers Are Evil

Giving into temptation is one of the most unfortunate of human traits. We salivate at the thought of taking that forbidden apple – we know deep down that it is bad for us, but push those feelings to one side. It simply looks too tasty.

Temptation is not only about physical treats, it is also about the promises of feelings and experiences that are yet to pass. We know that these things are never going to happen, but we choose to believe, and it is this very choice that makes us complicit in the promise. When we buy into a lie, we accept the lie, and it becomes part of our life.

These feelings often cross my mind when candidates accept counteroffers from their companies.

For the uninitiated, a counteroffer is when a person informs their company that they will be leaving, and the company offers them improved employment terms in order to “convince” them to stay. This may be an increase in salary, a better bonus scheme or even a promotion.

You might say that this is a sign that a company values their employee, but in the vast majority of cases, a counteroffer is an attempt temporarily to mitigate the business impact of losing that person. Finding a replacement is rarely a simple matter, and as soon as a person offers their resignation, the search for a replacement begins in the heads of their superiors, no matter whether that person stays or leaves.

It goes without saying that no one should leave a company without attempting to improve their situation before it comes to a job search. Performance reviews give a chance for two-way feedback: if your company is open to giving you that raise, they should do it on the back of good performance, not just when their backs are forced against the wall when you send that fateful ”I’m leaving” email.

Most candidates are aware that their company will possibly try to keep them, and too many are swayed by the comforting thought of getting something “extra” with no added risk of starting a new job. However, the reality is that once you have tendered your resignation, you are a “dead man walking.” There are many statistics quoted, but the one that sticks in my mind states that 80% of candidates, who accept a counteroffer, are back on the market within six months. Why would you do it?

Have the courage of your convictions and don’t keep eating the last few tasty apples on the already rotten tree. There are many trees out there with all manner of all-you-can-eat goodness, but it takes a leap of faith to climb onto the next one.

The counteroffer tempts far too many people to delay their move to that next tree. Life is too short to waste if on false promises. Once you have made that decision to go, follow through with it with all your energy.

Change can sometimes fuel the most amazing growth – don’t let any sort of comforting temptation get in your way.

Morning blog

All Before 9:00am: Your Morning Routine Dictates Your Day

There are few periods in the day that are more “yours” than the hours between 0600 and 0800. You get to work after your commute and are thrust into the maelstrom of noise, pulling you this way and that, inevitably ruining any best-laid plans.

Or maybe you are like me, in that you can never just “go home”; instead, you find yourself tending to the needs of your children or are ferrying them to activities! Perhaps, you have busy social calendar? Whatever your circumstances, if you are like me, you will find that very few evenings finish without some sort of family or social related drama or activity.

But in the mornings, when everyone is (relatively) quietly going about their own business, that is the time when you can truly shape your life in your own design. Therefore, for the most part, there is every chance that your morning routine should remain relatively uninterrupted.

I often wonder why we don’t put more thought into this period of our lives? I call this “All before 09:00 time”!

Far too many of us see our mornings as a frantic sprint to get “ready” for the day in the least time possible. Brushing your teeth in the shower? Easy. Ironing a shirt while eating a piece of toast? Down to a fine art. Slurping a coffee while speed walking on the way to the station. Don’t we all do that?

It is easy to feel like a high-flying go-getter if we can go from mild slumber to a caffeine-fuelled world-beater in 30 minutes. What role could an early morning possibly have, other than a prelude to the real events of the day?

Well, if your morning is organized it can not only saves you vital energy for the first crucial events of the day; but it can also stimulate you into getting a head start on everyone else. Knowing how the first 60-90 minutes of your day is going to be structured lets you feel in control, and allows you to save your energy for the important decisions to come when the “day proper” starts. Ever wonder why Mark Zuckerberg wears those boring hoodies? Well, it is one less decision to make in the morning. Let’s face it, the guy has enough on his plate. But why should we be any different?

I don’t want to tell you all what the perfect routine involves, as we are all different. But I can say for certain that it starts with waking up at the “right” time. If you wake when you are in a period of “light” sleep, you feel refreshed and energised and alert. There are apps available, which measure your activity, and even waking 30 minutes earlier than usual can make all the difference. Yes, you can wake up at 06:00 and feel more refreshed than if you woke up at 06:30! Play with your own alarm, alter it in 10 minute increments until you find the “perfect wake up time” for you. It really does work!

For many people, a great morning routine involves some exercise and some creativity. Rather than a sluggish and meandering first few hours of the day, why not get the blood pumping and the brain cells ticking over? If a rapid 30 minutes on the exercise bike and 15 minutes of stimulating reading (or even creative writing) don’t do it for you, I don’t know what will.

Many of us have ambitions to read more, write more, exercise more or maybe we just want to spend a little more quality time with our children (who always seem to be up at the crack of dawn). The hours before 09:00 make all of these personal ambitious possible. Personally, I like to run. Every Tuesday, my alarm goes of at 05:30. My trainers and running gear is already laid out ready for me to to wake up to. No excuses now. This is my “half-marathon” morning. This is a weekly ritual and watching the sun rise has become a morning picture I cherish. 21km and 90 minutes later I am ready for breakfast and keen to take on the day and it is still only 07:30.

A morning routine is like signing a contract with yourself. If you commit to it, and try not to let anything disturb it, your life can be transformed. If you know that you are going to start every day on the “right” foot, your chances of having a successful day are going to be that little bit higher.