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As a UK business what should you ask an outsourced payroll provider?

It can be difficult looking for an outsourced payroll provider, here's a guide to some of the key questions to ask.

8 Feb 2024

What is payroll outsourcing and how does it work?

 This is where you choose an external payroll provider to look after your company payroll instead of doing it yourself.  You send them your payroll data and they take care of the payroll administration including calculations, payslips and leavers and joiners. If BACS approved, they’ll be able to make payments directly to your staff and HMRC on your behalf. The whole process is managed via a secure online platform which you can access.

Why should I outsource my company payroll?

There are several compelling reasons for outsourcing your payroll; increasing and complex legal requirements; the cost of payroll software upgrades and training; covering payroll staff absences; the time costs of payroll processing, but the most important one is mitigating the risk to a business-critical function.  The reassurance of knowing your people will be paid accurately and on time is one less thing you’ll need to worry about.

Is there a good time to start outsourcing my payroll?

Any time of year is a good time to outsource your payroll – it really depends on your business’ needs. Some businesses choose to outsource their payroll about three months before the financial year starts.

I already outsource my payroll; how easy will it be to transfer to a new provider?

Switching payroll provider is usually a straightforward task.  Any good provider will guide you through this and take charge – then just follow their instructions. It’s a matter of transferring the employees’ current payroll data to the new system, understanding, and settling an ongoing system and a timetable for processing information each pay period.

Will there be a dedicated person I can speak to?

Yes, you will have a dedicated payroll administrator assigned to your business.  In their absence a colleague within our payroll team will deal with any queries.  We operate a system which allows us to share information across our team so that we can provide clients with a full service in unexpected circumstances.

How will you keep my payroll data secure?

We are compliant with UK GDPR rules. All our reports are encrypted and uploaded to an online portal. Payroll data is only accessible by authorised personnel within the payroll team and the firm.

We have also been awarded the Cyber Essentials Plus certification, a scheme designed to help organisations prevent highly common internet-based attacks and to implement the right controls to protect the confidentiality, integrity, and availability of stored data on devices on all internet-facing devices.

What is your pricing structure for payroll services?

Menu pricing can be misleading and inflexible. It’s our policy to discuss your requirements and to offer you a solution tailored to your needs and your business, not a rigid, one size fits all product.

Will you provide training on your payroll platforms for us?

We provide training and guidance on navigating through the payroll platform. It’s designed to be easy to use by you and your people.

Can you take care of international payments and different currencies?

We only make payroll payments to UK bank accounts in GBP. As we are BACs approved you have a reassurance of knowing that we can pay salaries directly into your employees’ bank accounts.

Will you help my employees with any payroll questions?

Our payroll advisors can certainly help with any employee related payroll related questions via your payroll officer.

Will you be able to work with my finance people?

We can liaise with your finance team on payroll related queries, payments, and accounting journals.

Will you flex to meet my payroll needs as my business expands?

As we provide a bespoke service this means that we can easily scale up as your business grows which means that you don’t have the burden of having to recruit extra payroll staff.

What are your T&Cs if things change or I need to take my payroll in-house?

We operate a three-month notice period.

We understand that businesses evolve, and you may need to take your payroll in house. We will work with you to ensure a smooth handover and will provide guidance on set up and related areas.

Could you help if I have a HMRC payroll inspection?

We apricate that this can be a worrying time and we can help you with an HMRC inspection for the period where we have been responsible for the processing of your company payroll.

Contact our payroll specialists for further advice


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