What is the first thing you notice as you enter an airport?
Perhaps it’s the plane landing in the distance, or the long strip of tarmac that goes off into the horizon. Our attention works in a way where we give priority to certain things and often forget or even block out events taking place just within our peripheral, like the ground support that is patrolling the area, or the people loading luggage onto the plane. While these things are essential to the operation of a well managed airport, we overlook them until we decide to really pay attention.
Outsourcing your payroll function can be a lot like this. We can get so caught up in the idea of outsourcing the payroll itself that a lot of the details get overlooked in the process of implementation.
Considerations when outsourcing your payroll
Many HR teams are now outsourcing their payroll to help enhance their HR function. Delegating a company’s payroll processing tasks to an external party has a lot of benefits, many of which we’ve mentioned in prior articles, such as Calculating the ROI of Payroll.
Among the various reasons, one of the greatest benefits HR professionals find with outsourcing their payroll is the professional level of service and expertise that is offered in outsourced payroll available for a fraction of the price when compared to carrying out payroll processes in-house.
However, this is not always the case with every payroll service. To really enhance a company’s HR, it is important to pay attention to the details, for not all payroll outsourcing services can and will provide the same level of support. The structure and payroll servicing demand can be very different depending on the industry, so it’s important to know if the payroll servicing company has a repertoire of experience in your given industry and whether they are able to meet your needs when it comes to processing your company’s payroll.
3 Reasons why in-country support is crucial when it comes to payroll
While there are outsourced payroll servicing companies that seem to cover many different locations, not all of these companies are in fact promising the same level of support. A question that HR professionals should ask to determine the quality and level of support payroll vendors are providing is whether they have in-country or local payroll support for their services.
Like a well-crafted plane, a company has many different moving parts that need to be managed and maintained with no less attention to detail than that of an aircraft. To have high quality support, you need professionals who are ready and on the ground to cater to the primary HR needs. With that said, here are the 3 key areas where in-country payroll support really makes a difference when it comes to outsourcing your payroll.
1. Zero language barrier
For a high performing company staying agile is key. To do so, it’s important that businesses have a tight line of communication. In the case of HR, this comes in the form of a seamless integration from businesses to their payroll outsourcing partners. Depending on the industry, the level of demand may differ. Regardless, having a tight line of communication and access to the different branches is necessary to ensure a high level of quality output.
One of the more apparent benefits of having in-country support is of course with language. While English is spoken by most of the world and is recognised as an international language, many countries (especially in Asia) have a varying level of understanding towards English. When working with a payroll servicing provider, it can prove to be invaluable for the team to have someone on-the-ground who can converse in the native tongue, helping minimise the chance of miscommunication and error.
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2. No lost time
Outsourcing is often associated with offshoring, though they actually refer to two very different concepts. Outsourcing a service is when tasks are delegated to an external entity. Offshoring, on the other hand, simply means delegating the tasks to people in another location, which can be either internal or external in nature.
Similar to the point of communication, ease of access to the HR service provider is crucial. The tasks related to the actual processing of payroll are very timely, where most of the work is piled up to a certain period of time in the month.
With the amount of tasks peaking in a small time frame every month, there is little time to lose when it comes to the processing of payroll. For this reason, it is important to distinguish between outsourcing and offshoring, and understanding if your payroll vendor is operating within your location of business. Engaging with payroll service providers who work within your location of business can help minimise the lead time, which is invaluable when it comes to time sensitive work such as that of payroll processing.
A major frustration that can arise with payroll partners operating overseas comes primarily from time difference. While the obvious benefit of outsourcing your payroll to an offshore servicing company is with cheaper prices, the thing that HR professionals need to factor in is the matter of time loss, which can be the case when the payroll servicing provider is not providing in-country support, leading to unnecessarily long lead times.
3. Dedicated professionals
A key reason why many leading businesses opt to outsource their payroll is due to their pursuit for a professional level of service. The goal is to enhance the business’ HR function by having a highly dedicated team to help the processing of payroll. This can be further enhanced by appointing your payroll to a vendor that offers in-country/ local payroll servicing support.
Instead of having a team that has their resources spread out by having to manage multiple country payroll, in-country support payroll services ensures the client has a local team dedicated to the legislation and practices native to them. Local payroll support brings more to the table as it helps further enhance the quality of work through greater mutual understanding and knowledge of local practices.
Know what you’re getting into
At the end of the day, to find the perfect payroll solution for your business, HR leaders should not only examine the pain point of what they are trying to answer, but also contrast and compare the different levels of service that are provided by their payroll vendor.
Which HR functions are your top priority? Are there additional services that can help address your HR pain point? Can your HR function be enhanced through acquiring professional HR help? These are questions that HR leaders should consider before appointing an HR outsourcing service.
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Links International is an industry leader in innovative HR outsourcing with services such as payroll outsourcing, visa application, Employer of Record (EOR), recruitment and more! Contact us for more information on how we can help leverage your HR function.