Payroll is a necessary function in any organisation – big or small – but staying on top of it can be challenging unless you have a system. Hear us out – payroll mistakes do happen, for instance, imagine if there is a delay in processing your employees’ wages or if the salary is not paid accurately. How would you cope if the person appointed to run your payroll falls sick or your computer system crashes at a critical time?

Such irregularities can hamper employee morale and affect business productivity in the long run. In addition, not adhering to the UK’s various employment laws and HMRC directives can result in serious legal and financial consequences.

5 steps to follow to streamline your payroll process

1. Pick up a suitable payroll software for your business

Ask your accountant for advice on the best payroll system for your business. The most convenient option is to invest in a top-rated software solution, like BrightPay, FreeAgent and QuickBooks.

And do not leave it all to your accountant either – acquaint yourself with how the payroll system works and what applications you can use. The good thing is that most top-ranked payroll systems are designed for beginner users, so you should not run into any hurdles with this.

Otherwise, you can always take the help of Lyel Accountants, which provides one of the best managed payroll services in Leeds and across the UK.

2. Maintain complete employee payroll records

This is a prerequisite to everything else – you can only have accurate records if you have all the information at hand. Compile all relevant details about your employees, from salary bands and time-off requests to overtime hours and bonuses that might affect their pay, and upload everything onto a chosen payroll solutions system.

If there are any changes to those details, add them at once – ask your employees to keep you in the loop to avoid discrepancies later. You will have to add or modify data from time to time, and if you have a clear process in place, your staff members can make those changes without having to ask questions every time.

Have a straightforward process in place: whenever a new employee is added, someone’s pay scale changes, you have to add overtime or other commonplace scenarios. In this context, it helps to use payroll solutions that automatically tracks all data so you can review it periodically and make any necessary changes.

3. Automate employee payments hassle-free

Once you have chosen a payroll solutions software and uploaded employee info onto it, automate making direct deposits into your customers’ bank accounts; automatic payments are accurate and timely and allow you to maintain digital records for reference at any time.

With the help of a payroll solutions tool, you can also calculate PAYE liabilities, enjoy real-time information reporting, and keep payroll year-end compliance in check. Plus, your employees will be happy about always getting paid on time!

Invest time reviewing every payroll process and identifying where you can simplify it. For instance, repeat actions like requesting time off or assigning bonuses do not necessarily need email trails – they can be automated. They can kick in whenever someone makes a request or reaches the threshold for the bonus.

Another good process to put in place is automatic payroll enrollment. When an employee joins your company, or when they get a promotion or transfer between departments, have a system by which they are automatically enrolled in HR, benefits and payroll taxes and by which changes to those are automatically applied when the promotion/transfer occurs.

4. Integrate benefits and payment

Integration – now that is a buzzword, and there is a reason why! It delivers a seamless HR and payroll experience and keeps the managers and employees satisfied.

Some businesses use separate systems to manage HR and payroll functions, but this can easily get complicated as your business grows. Instead, integrate the two into a single system.

Given that the two are closely related, this will reduce the workload for everyone concerned by eliminating a massive proportion of duplicate manual data input and, more importantly, knowing they are paying employees accurately.

5. Set up a payroll calendar

Having a payroll calendar enables you to schedule when you have to collect your employees’ timesheets and process their wages. Payroll calendars are typically based on payment frequency, direct deposit processing times, and bank holidays.

Besides, you must be aware of the main deadlines related to payroll. For instance, you should pay your PAYE bill to HMRC by the 22nd of the following month if you pay monthly and the 22nd after the end of a quarter if you pay quarterly.

If there are problems,
let an expert fix them

Whether it is a set of numbers that do not add up in the system or a notice from the HMRC that you are overdue on payments, do not wait for a second longer than you have to – address the issue before it gets out of hand.

Let an expert accounting firm handle your payroll if you are not confident about managing your payroll process. Lyel Accountants, for instance, offers quality managed payroll services that give you peace of mind. Among the benefits you get as our client are the following:

  • Holiday calculations
  • End-of-year tax preparation
  • Real-time information filing
  • Guidance on any payroll issues
  • Assistance with auto-enrollment
  • Completed payslips sent to you on time
  • Reporting auto-enrolment to your pension provider


You also do not need to fret over subscribing to suitable payroll solutions tool or staying compliant with HMRC. We have the latest cloud-based payroll tools and always stay updated on legislation changes. In conclusion, staying on top of your payroll can be challenging, but reaching out to the right people and accessing the right information does not have to be.

The most important thing is to never fall behind on payments that are due – better to have a few extra questions now than HMRC penalties later, so go ahead and ask whoever you need to, whatever you need to. Contact Lyel Accountants today!


Rehan Javed

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