Payroll is the largest expenditure in most UK organisations and should, therefore, be managed by qualified professionals.
National Payroll Week celebrates not only the impact of payroll on business but also the contribution that payroll makes to the UK economy.
The potential of payroll to contribute to an organisation’s success is greater than ever before. Primary concerns are greater accuracy, faster processing, regulatory compliance and advancements in payroll systems.
This year has seen several major regulatory changes, most notably the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR), which came into effect on May 25. The heightened requirements include new protections, such as the right for individuals to be forgotten, and strict controls around data privacy that require instant enactment. While data visibility has always been important, GDPR makes it essential, as the risks and benefits on both sides are stacking up.
Your payroll team processes some of the most valuable and vulnerable data your company will ever have. Beyond its operational importance for you, that data includes sensitive personal information on everyone who works with you. Depending on the size of your company and security processes, that could mean putting a large number of hard-working individuals at risk every month.
The most significant advantage of better data is better compliance. In the year of GDPR, heightened data security regulations are presenting both obstacles and opportunities to companies worldwide. Automation and analytics can help organisations achieve greater data quality and thereby better outcomes and insights, helping payroll assume its role in strategic planning and decision-making.
GDPR and payroll
To be GDPR compliant, you need to consider lots of different types of staff data. For example, how do you securely handle and store timesheets? What about emails or text messages from employees who are asking for holiday leave?
There’s also the question of how you securely store sick notes – and other data you need to consider. If you have not already done so, determine what data you have and create processes for securely handling and storing it.
Your employees need to know what personal data of theirs your payroll team and business holds. Also, you have to respond to subject access requests (SARs) and requests for their personal data to be either rectified or erased. This can be from present or past employees.
Do you leave printed payslips on the desks of your employees? You need to make sure they are given to employees in a secure way. One solution that businesses are turning to is the use of online payslips, where employees can securely access them. For example, they need to put in a password before they can see them.
If you currently have your personnel and/or payroll data in various locations it makes more sense to pull everything together into as few locations as possible. Having this data in one place will help your payroll team to oversee it properly.
For many organisations, achieving GDPR compliance will be a long journey. You should prioritise tackling those areas where a lack of action leaves your organisation exposed. If an infringement occurs, demonstrating you have made a start could help reduce potential penalties.
The ICO says:
“Monetary penalties have been and will continue to be the last resort of our regulatory action – our primary aim is to support businesses to get things right and improve their practices where required.”
If you are still unsure as to how you become GDPR compliant and missed our seminars and workshops, please do not hesitate to contact us for advice.
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