Switching Payroll Software Providers? Ask These 10 Questions First

There are many reasons why you might be thinking about switching payroll software providers. Having the right provider for your business is crucial, and can mean the difference between an arduous payroll process that you dread every pay period, and a quick and easy payroll that you hardly think about at all.

But finding the right one isn’t necessarily as easy as it seems. There are so many payroll software providers today that sifting through them can be overwhelming. To make this worse, some payroll providers use so much technical jargon that many people feel they can’t distinguish between them at all. This is how most businesses end up choosing a provider that really, isn’t the right fit for their needs.

But what are your needs? Not all payroll software providers offer the same features. Yes, the basic service may be the same but the additional features are what will really identify whether a provider is best suited to your business. So first, you’ll need to identify your payroll needs.

In this blog post, we’ll break down the important questions you should be asking before you switch providers, so that by the end of it the only question on your mind will be, “Why didn’t I switch sooner?”

10 Questions To Ask Before Switching Payroll Providers

1. What Pay Frequencies Does It Allow?

Not all businesses pay at the same frequency. The most common are monthly and weekly, of course, but many others exist too. Yet, not all payroll providers cater to the full range. So, one of the first things you need to know is, will it accommodate for the pay frequency your business needs? With BrightPay, users can run a number of different pay frequencies at the same time, be it weekly, fortnightly, 4-weekly, monthly, quarterly or yearly.

2. Is It Integrated With My Accounting Software?

Jumping between your payroll software and your accounting software while entering your payroll journal in your nominal ledger is a tiring and cumbersome process. BrightPay is now fully integrated with top accounting software companies such as FreeAgent, AccountsIQ, Twinfield and many more. With some payroll systems, users need to manually enter the payroll figures into both payroll and accounting systems.

3. Does It Have Employee Self-Service?

Employee self-service portals can have a host of uses for both employees and employers alike. With BrightPay Connect, for example, employees can have their payslips sent directly to their smartphone or tablet via an employee app, they can view payroll and HR documents, and they can request leave directly from their device.

4. What Is The Customer Support Like?

At BrightPay, we understand that no matter which provider you choose, the likelihood that you will at some point need to contact their customer support team for help is extremely high. That’s why we’ve worked hard to ensure a 98% satisfaction rating with our free customer support service. And, it’s why choosing a provider with an excellent customer support service is a good idea.

5. How Much Will It Cost?

The bottom line matters almost more than anything else because, it doesn’t matter how many exciting features a payroll system may have if they’re outside of your set budget. So, make sure you look at pricing options and compare to find the best one for you. Also keep an eye out for hidden software costs - some providers have an add-on cost for important features such as auto enrolment functionality, emailing payslips and customer support.

6. Does It Have Automatic Cloud Back-up?

Since the GDPR came into effect just over two years ago, employers have had to get serious about how they protect and store employee data. With BrightPay, the payroll can be password-protected so that you don’t need to worry about an employee stumbling across the payroll data. As a bonus, with BrightPay Connect, our optional cloud portal add-on, you can enjoy automatic cloud backups of the payroll data too.

7. Can Bureau Users Batch Process?

If you’re a payroll bureau then you know how important it is to be able to batch process client payroll. Despite how crucial this feature is, not all providers include it. BrightPay allows seamless batch payroll processing so that you can run the payroll for multiple clients simultaneously and submit outstanding RTI and CIS submissions to HMRC at once.

8. Does It Come With Free Resources And Tools?

When looking for a new payroll provider, keep an eye out on the free resources and tools they have available on their website. BrightPay shares video tutorials, step-by-step help guides, ebooks and webinars (both live and on-demand). We make sure that our customers always have access to expert help so that they can really get the most out of their payroll software.

9. Can It Build Customisable Reports?

Customisable reports are one of those payroll features that you never knew you needed. Say goodbye to having to choose from a limited list of report templates, none of which really give you everything you need. With BrightPay, you can create your own reports and include only what you want and none of what you don’t.

10. Finally, What About Auto Enrolment?

Since auto enrolment was introduced a few years ago, payroll administrators need to be able to easily make submissions to pension providers straight from their payroll software. Sadly, not all payroll providers allow for this. BrightPay is now fully integrated with a number of major pension providers in the UK, including NEST, The People’s Pension, Aviva and Smart Pension. Better still, BrightPay will automatically assess employees in the background each pay period and alert you if an employee needs to be enrolled.

Learn More About BrightPay Payroll Software

So, now that you know what questions you need to be asking before switching payroll providers, why not book a free demo with a member of the BrightPay team. We can talk you through what your business’s payroll needs are, why your current provider isn’t meeting those needs, and explore whether or not BrightPay is the right choice for you and your business.

Related articles:

Preparing for your move to BrightPay
Top tips for switching payroll
Easily integrate BrightPay with your accounting software


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Karen Bennett
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