Is Your Payroll System a Frankenstein’s Monster or Your Competitive Edge?
Times have changed. Conversations that center around Payroll or Payroll/HRIS are antiquated. Business and HR Leaders need to be talking in terms of Human Capital Management Technology (HCMT) and viewing these platforms as employee engagement, retention, and collaboration resources. The expectations and capabilities of strong payroll platforms have grown significantly. Some have kept up better than others.
From Paper Paystubs to Employee Lifecycle Management
When I launched my HR career as an HR Assistant for a 200-employee community bank, the payroll platform was just that; a way to pay employees. Paper paystubs (I’m dating myself) were hand delivered every other week, the intranet consisted of a webpage with blue hyperlinks, and PTO was managed through inter-office envelopes and a three-ringed binder (remember those?). I was fortunate to be able to develop a PTO request system and robust intranet with our IT Department, however these were still separate from the payroll platform.
Later while at a larger engineering firm, I began to see the evolution from payroll platform to payroll/HRIS. With nearly 1,000 employees, multiple offices, and multiple disciplines, efforts were made to use applicant tracking, reporting, and performance management modules.
When I entered the world of HR Consulting and Outsourcing, I was exposed to everything from DOS operating systems to more robust platforms inching closer to the HCMT services of today. The firm understood the trajectory of the market and invested in a multi-module platform that included capabilities to manage the entire employee lifecycle and allow for employee interaction, communication, learning and engagement. There was a marked shift of bringing these capabilities to the small to mid-size business community and moving from a payroll provider to a trusted HR and Finance Partner.
Today’s Workforce Demands more from HR & Payroll
My discussions have evolved as well. Initially vendor changes were driven by an HR and Finance desire for process automation and efficiency, without much discussion of the employee experience. Today, being able to accurately process payroll and increase efficiency is a base level requirement of any vendor. Today, employees are demanding better access to information, collaboration tools, and more.
In a hyper competitive talent acquisition environment where business leaders are worried about losing key talent, retention and the employee experience are critical. Employees want and need transparency and communication, connection to a mission, organization, and peers, growth and development opportunities, feeling heard and valued, and a focus on personal and financial wellness.
Anyone who has lived through this evolution knows that not all platforms are created equal. Some still struggle to meet the new basics of payroll processing and automation, others have multiple modules bolted together like a Frankenstein’s Monster with data caught in the middle, and some have a true, integrated, single database, HCMT solution flexible enough to meet current needs and grow as an organization grows.
How We Help
At MEA, I have had the opportunity to support Members with quick conversations, HR Audits focused on use of Technology, and full platform transitions. Providers have included ADP, UKG, Paycom, iSolved, and our dedicated HCMT partner, Paylocity1.
If you find yourself at any stage of the payroll to HCMT evolution wanting to make better use of your current system, or explore alternatives, please reach out. I am happy to share my experiences to the extent that they are helpful!
I also invite you to join us on Tuesday, August 9th at 11:00 am for a conversation with Paylocity’s Human Resources Program Manager as she discusses how to Reinvent the Employee Experience.
1Organizations interested in exploring Paylocity should contact Matt Roessler at MRoessler@meainfo.org or 201-738-8121 to receive partner pricing of 30% off. Members also enjoy partner level support to assist in areas of need.