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Payroll software in comparison!

Software for payroll accounting: Compare software

Payroll accounting is a complex and extremely sensitive topic. After all, it involves the correct and punctual transfer of salaries and wages to employees and the associated contributions to the relevant authorities. In addition, highly sensitive employee data is processed. Data security, unrestricted availability and data protection are therefore basic requirements that must be met and guaranteed.

Trend: While companies used to insist that all payroll data be stored on their own computers, the trend for some time now has been to outsource payroll accounting completely.

With the increasing digitalization and automation of business processes, more and more companies are also looking for a suitable software solution for their payroll accounting; keyword: digital payroll accounting.

What is payroll accounting about?

Employees generally receive their salary once a month. In the payslip, the individual items, the earnings, are broken down for them in text form by the employer: Gross salary, salary components, taxes and deductions, social security contributions, etc. – and finally the net salary. The payslip must also contain details identifying the employer and the employee.

It is important to know this: Salary is not the same as a wage. It is true that wages are also remuneration based on an employment relationship. However, wages are not – and this is the main difference to salaries – paid as a fixed sum, for example the Monday salary, but only for the hours actually worked. This is why there is a payroll accounting system that corresponds to payroll accounting.

What is important for payroll accounting?

Payroll accounting must be prepared by the employer. This is regulated in the Industrial Code, § 108 Payroll accounting. It states, among other things: “The employee shall be issued with a statement in text form upon payment of remuneration.”

It must also contain at least

  • Information on the payroll period and
  • composition of the pay.

The law also states: “With regard to the composition, information is required in particular on the type and amount of bonuses, allowances, other remuneration, type and amount of deductions, payments on account and advances.”

What can software do in the area of payroll accounting?

Payroll accounting is subject to a whole range of legal regulations, which are constantly being updated. With payroll software, you are always up to date – especially when it comes to legal certainty.

  • The subject of interfaces: If the payroll program has the appropriate interfaces, the relevant data can be transferred from the software to the tax authorities and social insurance companies. This saves time and reduces errors, as a plausibility check is usually integrated into the relevant programs.
  • Inter-modular compatibility: Links with other HR software modules also make sense: with time recording and workforce scheduling, for example.
  • Company-specific features: Last but not least, the software should also include and map collective bargaining regulations and special payroll types such as short-time working or the various options for company pension schemes.

What functions and tools does payroll software offer?

Payroll software offers many functions and tools that make payroll accounting easier and more efficient. These include the automated calculation of wages and salaries, the management of working hours and vacation days and the creation of monthly or annual payslips.

In addition, payroll software can also be used to automatically calculate deductions for taxes, social security contributions and other levies. The creation of wage tax certificates and other official documents is also facilitated by such software.

Another important aspect is the possibility of integration with other systems, such as accounting software or human resource management systems. This enables seamless and efficient management of personnel and financial data.

In summary, payroll software offers many features and tools that can simplify and automate the management of payroll. This saves time and resources and provides greater accuracy and efficiency in the management of HR and financial data. It is therefore worth comparing different software options and choosing the one that best suits a company’s specific needs and requirements. With the right software, companies can save time and money while ensuring that their payroll is run correctly and efficiently.

Decisive questions when choosing the right payroll software

If you are looking for payroll software or payroll accounting software, you should answer a few questions in advance:

  • Am I looking for a payroll solution that also covers all the needs of my HR department?
  • Or: Am I “only” looking for the optimal software solution for payroll accounting?
    You already have payroll software: How can this solution be linked with other HR software solutions so that I have a perfectly running overall system despite different software providers?
  • Where should my data be stored?
    • Do I want to store the data in-house?
    • Should the data be stored in an in-house or external data center?
    • Do I want the data to be stored with the software provider?
      Important: If the data is located outside the EU, which is not bound by the GDPR, legal challenges may arise.
  • Who prepares the payslip/payroll?
    • The payroll is created and sent by your own HR department.
    • The part-part solution: The payroll is created up to a certain point by your own HR department, but then finalized and sent by the software provider.
    • I would like to completely outsource the topic of payroll / payroll accounting and the software company should be responsible for creating and sending it.

How HRNeeds can support the introduction of digital payroll accounting

HRNeeds naturally supports you in finding the right payroll software: With the help of our Analysis-Tool and the subsequent free consultation, we identify your exact requirements. We also simulate the various solutions for you. This enables us to provide you with a list of the HR software solutions that are right for you. Free of charge and without obligation!

The advantages of a digital payroll system summarized:

  • Legally compliant and correct payroll accounting
  • Time saving
  • Automated creation of payroll accounting / payroll accounting
  • Automated transmission of important notifications to health insurance companies and tax offices
  • Interfaces to other HR modules such as time recording, HR management and ERP systems
  • Reporting functions

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HRNeedsHR software comparison helps you find the ideal software: HRNeeds uses a special analysis tool to compare the company-specific requirements with the software solutions and thus reliably finds the right software.

We are happy to advise you, free of charge and without obligation! Our expertise will effectively save you time in your search for the right tools for your HR processes. Our competent HR consultants are in constant contact with HR software manufacturers and are therefore always informed about current trends and innovations.

Do you have any questions about the software solutions?

A practical example:

Introduction of digital payroll accounting

Payroll accounting is a key issue for every company. Finding the perfect payroll software for your company is essential.

The starting situation

Payroll accounting systems and their integration into a company’s software landscape are standard.And yet there are many different reasons for changing the system. “One of the most common reasons is outdated payroll systems that can no longer meet legal requirements,” says Raphaele Rose, Corporate Lead Sales & Marketing at VEDA GmbH which specializes in HR solutions & services. For example, the increasingly extensive social security reporting requirements in the past were a sticking point for switching systems. Reduced performance of the remuneration systems due to growing employee numbers, more complex payroll structures or special reporting requirements as well as a lack of API connections to other systems would also lead to a change, Ms. Rose continues. Errors in payroll accounting or rising costs for the system in use can also be reasons for switching. Or, as Stefan Post, Managing Director of SP_Data GmbH & Co. KG, which also specializes in HR software, says: “We are in a constant state of change. A company is changing and processes are constantly being optimized. New requirements and the desire for greater efficiency mean that existing systems are being questioned.”

What should I look out for when searching for a suitable payroll software?

“A point that sounds banal at first, but is ultimately decisive, is the question: Do I like the system, the interface?” says Claus Nielsen, operator of the software comparison portal HRNeeds. There is also the purely subjective assessment: Can I work with the system, is it structured according to my expectations? In addition, it is important to clarify whether the system covers all requirements and whether the solution can be docked onto other software systems. Because, according to Stefan Post from SP_Data: “Every area or department in the company should receive the right solution for its needs. Interfaces can be used to transfer data to neighboring systems. All-in-one solutions are often associated with compromises for the individual subject areas.”

Frau Portrait

The question of whether it is an open or closed system should therefore always be answered in advance. Especially if payroll accounting is to be linked to time recording, authorization control or other external payroll systems and other HR software tools.

The question of the location of data storage and processing also needs to be clarified. According to Raphaele Rose from VEDA, the trend is towards HR Cloud Solutions & Services, i.e. business process outsourcing (BPO). This involves outsourcing the entire payroll accounting business process. After all, an in-house infrastructure would mean increased costs and higher personnel expenses. However, Claus Nielsen also knows that there are companies that want to keep their own data in-house. Or who are looking for a kind of interim solution: The data is in the cloud, but is processed by their own employees.

The advantages of payroll accounting tailored to your needs

According to Stefan Post, payroll accounting is an area that is often underestimated – at least by non-specialists: “There is an assumption that the software calculates the net from the gross with just a few clicks. It’s not more than one or two days’ work a month, according to a widespread assessment by outsiders.” But the reality is different: For example, laws, regulations and collective agreements must be observed and changes responded to. Raphaele Rose sees it the same way: “The daily task of dealing with and implementing the flood of constant changes in social security law and tax law is part of the master class and requires expert knowledge and specialists that are becoming increasingly difficult to find.”

Digital payroll can provide efficient support here and make it easier to deal with the topic of wages and salaries. “If the solution runs efficiently, quickly and reliably, then human resource management can look back on a satisfied workforce and expand its own additional services, such as the provision of payslips and registration certificates in the employee portal,” says Raphaele Rose. This statement once again emphasizes the importance of existing interfaces to third-party systems.

It is also clear that the impact of employee self services (ESS) should not be underestimated. As employees can maintain their master data themselves via personalized access, the HR department is relieved of numerous standard tasks.

Mann Portrait

With regard to payroll accounting, Stefan Post also mentions the reduction in manual effort and time savings as further advantages. He adds: “Useful information on changes to the law and ongoing updates keep payroll accountants up to date. In addition, digital software solutions have become even more important in times of working from home.”

These statements are reflected in the “HR Study 2020: This is the state of digitalization in HR work”, which was jointly published in 2020 by the Chair of Human Resources Management and Business Governance at Martin Luther University Halle-Wittenberg and forcont business technology gmbh. In the study, 44 percent of the companies surveyed stated that they had already automated their personnel remuneration. 37 percent were planning to take this step. When asked about the goals associated with digitalization, 75 percent cited an increase in process quality, 66 percent a reduction in the cost of HR processes and 62 percent an increase in employee satisfaction.

What can HRNeeds do to help you find the right payslip?

The market for digital tools is confusing and non-transparent. This makes it difficult to find a payroll accounting system that is tailored precisely to your needs so that the benefits listed actually materialize. The HRNeeds software comparison portal is a competent and reliable partner in this regard. HRNeeds compares company-specific requirements with over 60 software solutions and compiles a list of providers for its customers. A specially developed analysis tool is used to identify tailor-made software solutions based on individual customer requirements. A short telephone consultation between the HR experts from HRNeeds and the customer ensures that all issues are discussed and any outstanding points are clarified. Because: “Even if it looks like a solution might work, problems often lie in the details,” as HRNeeds operator Claus Nielsen knows. Once all questions have been clarified, the customer receives a free and non-binding list of the payroll accounting systems identified with a detailed summary and the respective advantages and disadvantages of the recommended solutions – including existing interfaces to software already in use. This process allows searchers to quickly reach a decision and avoid the otherwise necessary and time-consuming research effort.

In this way, it is possible for every company to provide its own HR staff with the best possible support in processing their complex payroll tasks with a digital solution.

What is important when implementing payroll accounting?

“Important stakeholders should already be involved in the selection process. This leads to greater acceptance among those involved because different perspectives and requirements are taken into account,” explains Stefan Post from SP_Data. These would include the IT department, the management, the works council and the future users. “A project manager should act as the central point of contact and coordinator for communication between the stakeholders and the software manufacturer,” adds Post. And project management with the right implementation strategy is needed.

But what could such a strategy look like? Raphaele Rose from VEDA is specific: “The first priority is good project management that covers all aspects of the transition from the old system to the new payroll solution and clearly defines the project team and responsibilities, classifies them in terms of time and, if necessary, manages delays and outstanding tasks in a timely manner.” It is also important to consider the issues of time and resources in advance. And to find the right time for the changeover and implementation.

Raphaele Rose also mentions the following questions that companies need to answer:

  • What does the planning and parallel maintenance of the test runs look like?
  • Can the service provider provide support here?
  • When should training sessions be scheduled?
  • In other words: Can the HR team provide sufficient capacity for test and live runs?
  • What is the plan B if resources are unavailable at short notice?

The implementation of payroll accounting is not yet complete. The format in which the data is transferred from the old to the new system also needs to be clarified – both master data and payroll account data. Raphaele Rose knows: “Data transfers are always successful in terms of performance if the respective systems can deliver and receive good quality data. This must be checked in any case in order to minimize the manual effort that is inevitably associated with an implementation.” In this context, attention should also be paid to the data structures used in the respective HR solutions.

As a rule, software companies do not leave their customers alone during the implementation process. VEDA supports its customers with advice and programming at every step. The same applies to the go-live support. And can even manage and take over the entire implementation process on request.
SP_Data also supports companies very closely during software implementation. “The project is only completed together once the system has been installed and configured, the existing data has been migrated and training and test runs have been completed,” says Stefan Post. A precise action plan and a test phase are mandatory when implementing new software.

If everything runs smoothly and the test phases have been successfully completed, the software can be accepted. And you have taken a step towards a digitalized HR department.

This is how HRNeeds proceeds:

  • The company-specific requirements are compared with the solutions and a list of providers is drawn up.
  • In a short telephone consultation between the HR experts from HRNeeds and the customer, it is ensured that the customer’s requirements and wishes are discussed and any outstanding issues are clarified.
  • The customer then receives a free, non-binding list of the identified software solutions with a detailed summary of the recommended software solutions – including all information to help the customer make a decision.
  • On request, HRNeeds can also provide assistance and advice during the final decision-making process, so that you can be sure that the software solutions meet your requirements.
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In our many years of experience, the error is often in the detail. Due to the complexity of the situation, many companies only realize during the implementation phase that the chosen software solution can only partially cover the requirements or not at all. To prevent this from happening, we offer HRNeeds users a special service: on request, you can also receive a brief consultation free of charge and without obligation, which provides many important tips and highlights pitfalls in the selection process.

Start your search for suitable payroll software today – HRNeeds will help you find the right solution for you!

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Find the ideal software with the HR software comparison from HRNeeds: HRNeeds uses a special analysis tool to compare the company-specific requirements with the software solutions and thus reliably finds the perfect software fit.

Do you have any questions about the software solutions?

We will be happy to advise you, free of charge and without obligation! Our expertise will effectively save you time in your search for the right tools for your HR processes. Our competent HR consultants are in constant contact with HR software manufacturers and are therefore always informed about current trends and innovations.