The ins & outs of payroll

Payroll professionals are responsible for making sure that the joyous occasion that is ‘pay day’ happens for all of a company’s employees.

A typical entry level role is that of payroll administrator. Responsibilities include a number of calculations such as overtime and hours worked, specific tax deductions for each employee, and processing payments so that each person within a company receives the correct amount of pay – on time!

Payroll administrators have to implement numerical and overall accuracy in their work to avoid disgruntling employees and HMRC! They may also distribute tax forms (for example P45s – documents that detail an employee’s pay and taxes information when they leave a company).

Things can get particularly busy around the end of a tax year, when payroll administrators may work closely with tax experts to get all essential documentation prepared and completed in time. Payroll duties can also occasionally be undertaken by bookkeepers or accounts assistants, and they are sometimes form part of a HR role.

Keep those wagons rolling…

Payroll managers make sure all of these payroll processes run as efficiently as possible, with procedures in place to make sure payroll is carried out even if someone is missing on the day. They may handle queries and complaints. Some payroll manager jobs for offices with employees spread across various different countries will have to make extra checks to ensure expat payroll runs smoothly (when employees are paid in line with the tax regulations of their country of origin, rather than where they currently reside).

You can enter payroll as a school leaver with GCSEs or Highers, and work your way up the ladder with a starting salary of around £18,000. There will be a number of professional qualifications on offer along the way to enhance your professional development.