Surviving the Payroll End-of-Year

If payroll falls under your responsibility, then we know a little something about the stressful period that approaches with the payroll end-of-year. We’ve put together a high-level checklist that will hopefully help you glide through the process.

Payroll End-of-Year Checklist

  1. Payroll end-of-yearThe Budget. If you’re manually working out your payroll, be sure to listen out for any changes. These may include the Cost of Living Allowance (COLA), Social Security Rates (SSR), tax rates and other dynamics such as sickness benefits. If you’re using a software application to work out your payroll, all changes dictated by the budget should be updated by your service provider, so that your system will automatically calculate the payroll inclusive of all changes come the first payroll of the year.
  2. Applying changes to the January Payroll. If you’re manually working out your payroll, the first month can get a bit tricky with possible changes in COLA, SS rates, tax rates, and more. Software solutions should cater for these changes globally once you start working on the new year. Remember that you need to apply the COLA adjustment to the basic salary of all your employees. This can be a bit tedious when done manually, especially as your company grows.
  3. Tax Returns. The payroll end-of-year can be pretty busy with the submission of your annual tax returns for both your employees and company. Make sure you obtain all the latest forms from the Inland Revenue Department, and be aware of any changes in the Electronic Lodgement. If you are using a payroll software solution, check whether it automatically generates all the information that you need to submit, in the required format and whether you can do so electronically. You’ve usually got until mid-February of the following year to get sorted, but you might want to get it over and done with once you’ve closed off the year.
  4. Changeover to the New Year. Check whether your application allows you to change over from the new year to the previous year and vice versa. This will provide you with more flexibility come January to finalise the previous year whilst working on the new.
  5. Public Holidays in the New Year. Be sure to check the public holidays for the new year and see which fall on working days or weekends. Local payroll software solutions are designed to automatically update the public holiday calendar for you, facilitating your start to the new year.
  6. Leave Balances. Depending on your company policy, you will need to cater for employees’ outstanding leave balances as part of the payroll end-of-year process. Your software solution should allow you the flexibility to accommodate your company leave policy and process leave balances accordingly.
  7. Be Independent from your Solution Provider. Whilst some software applications may require the assistance, whether remote or on site, of your service provider’s technical people, others make processing the payroll end-of-year fully automated by yourself so you don’t have to rely on or wait around for your software company and can go ahead and get the job done in your own time.
  8. Choosing your Payroll Software. If you’re about to take the step from a manual payroll to a software solution, or are unhappy with your current system, consider a locally developed and supported application that would cater for all local legislation. This is particularly important when considering the budget changes, tax rates, benefits and public holidays. These vary from one jurisdiction to another, so having a localised solution can save you tons of time.

Shireburn’s Payroll Expertise

Simplifying the Payroll End-of-Year At Shireburn we have over 30 years of experience in business software solutions, and are leaders in the local payroll and leave management market.  More than 50,000 employees are paid using our software and just over 8,000 have their leave managed by our systems.

Our solutions include regular updates, backed by a team who are always on the lookout for changes in the payroll legislation, so that you don’t have to worry about a thing. We programme our systems to automatically cater for changes in legislation, and generate all the information you need for the electronic lodgement of your annual tax returns. We also make adjustments easy, with tools that facilitate the global allocation and adjustments of COLA, leave entitlement, company bonuses and more. So come January, you can rest assured that your first payroll of the year is up to date with all necessary adjustments.

You can count on us to guide you through a number of payroll options to suit your particular business requirements. Our solutions include:

Get in touch with us for a proposal and demonstration.


10 Tips to Manage Employee Leave

Shireburn Indigo PayrollManaging your employees’ leave, however large or small your organisation, can be stressful. From vacation leave to sick leave, study leave, bereavement leave, and maternity leave, keeping track of employees’ different leave requests call on a manager’s planning skills to take action.

It can all become an administrative nightmare! But here are some simple tips that could help you successfully manage leave policies and maintain a productive workplace, all while staying in compliance with laws and employment regulations.

  1. Keep up to date with legislation and be clear on both employer and employee rights.
  2. Outline clear leave policies for everyone to adhere to. This also helps ensure uniform treatment across the board.
  3. Set a clear leave notice period whereby employees are expected to give proper notice when applying for vacation time. Of course, exceptions will occur and management should be flexible according to the employee’s situation. Setting a notice period such as a week in advance, helps management to coordinate resources better.
  4. Network within the HR community. This will help you keep up to date, so becoming a member of associations such as the Foundation for Human Resources Development (FHRD) might help keep yourself informed.
  5. Automate the process of importing leave data into your payroll. Administering leave can already burden HR and management, and a software solution can help relieve much of this work.
  6. Simplify your vacation leave application process. Some software solutions offer an employee portal that allows staff to apply for leave online and enables managers to approve or reject this accordingly. This streamlines the process, reduces paperwork, and eliminates disputes over applications and resources.
  7. Provide tools for management to see their resources available at any one given moment, so that they can swiftly approve or reject leave requests based on resource availability. This ensures that your company can continue to operate smoothly, every day.
  8. Provide staff with a leave planner so that they can also view resources on any given day and will be more reluctant to apply for leave on a day when several of their colleagues are already absent. Some software solutions provide this through an online portal, but you can also keep a physical planner in a common area such as your staff room – you just need to be prepared to regularly update it since it will not update automatically as in the case of an online portal.
  9. Ensure managers/HR have access to updated and correct employee leave balances so that they may quickly determine whether an employee is eligible to pay while on the requested leave.
  10. Encourage management to be empathetic towards employees who are requesting leave due to difficult personal issues. If handled wrongly, this can cause workplace morale problems both for the employee in question and those around them. Demonstrating a proper balance between employee and company interests, will pay dividends on your team’s productivity, morale and retention.

At Shireburn we have over 30 years of experience in business software solutions, and are leaders in the local payroll and leave management market with more than 50,000 employees being paid using our software and just over 8,000 having their leave managed by our systems.

You can count on Shireburn to guide you through a number of leave management options to suit your particular business requirements, from a cloud solution accessible from anywhere, to an on site option.

Get in touch with us for a proposal and demonstration.


Upcoming Training Courses March 2016

Whether you are new to our products or simply need a refresher, our training courses can help you get the most out of our solutions. Training courses are now available in March for Shireburn Financial Manager (SFM) and Shireburn Payroll System (SPS) users. Visit shireburn.com/training to apply online today. Places are limited and are on a first come first served basis.


10 Handy Payroll Tips

Shireburn Indigo PayrollWhether you are running a 5 person business, or a large corporation with 100’s of employees, payroll is a priority.  Staff must be paid on time, every time, and be paid correctly. It is the responsibility of every employer to ensure that they are.

Some processes can be daunting, but here are 10 tips that should help make your payroll plain sailing!

  1. Beware of complex payroll calculations including different fringe benefit taxation and maternity leave trust fund contribution categories, end-of-year procedures and government budget updates. Failure to comply with laws and regulations can have serious repercussions.
  2. Automate tax and NI calculation. Find out if your payroll software automatically takes care of taxes for you. This can ensure the payroll process is completed in a timely and correct matter. Out of sight, out of mind (and in compliance)!
  3. When it’s time to give raises, consider providing them in the form of tax-free fringe benefits such as health insurance, a mobile phone or a retirement plan.
  4. Before taking on new staff, particularly foreigners (non-EU nationals), ensure that all permits are in order. It is the legal responsibility of every employer to ensure that all employees are legally allowed to work for the business.
  5. Properly classify your workers. It may not be legal to for example classify a worker as an independent contractor. Each classification may have a direct effect on your payroll process.
  6. Clearly identify your payroll schedules. You may choose to pay your employees monthly, 4-weekly, fortnightly or weekly.
  7. When investing in software, select the best platform for your business. If you are experiencing growth, or you are always on the go try selecting an option that’s hosted in the cloud. This will make it easier to access all of your payroll information in one place, whenever you need it.
  8. Always think about automating as many payroll and leave processes as possible, leaving you to work on the more important matters of your job.
  9. Get good support for your payroll software. If you use a software or online package, and a technical glitch is preventing staff from being paid, you’ll want help at hand to save stress and liability. Always check that online or telephone support is part of the deal and easily available. Research the provider’s reputation. Ask other similar businesses what they use.
  10. Consider having an integrated leave management system that pushes all leave data into your payroll. This makes things so much easier especially with variables such as vacation leave, sick leave, bereavement leave, maternity leave and more!

You can count on Shireburn Software to guide you through a number of payroll options to suit your particular business requirements, from a cloud solution accessible from anywhere, to an on site option.

Get in touch with us for a proposal and demonstration.


Shireburn Indigo Payroll cloud solution showcased at Annual HR Conference

Shireburn Indigo PayrollShireburn Software successfully exhibited its latest payroll solution, cloud-based Shireburn Indigo Payroll, at the Foundation for Human Resources Development (FHRD) Annual Conference.

For the fifth consecutive year Shireburn exhibited its leading payroll solutions at this conference as part of their commitment to support the local HR profession.

Shireburn Software was this year an official partner of the event that was held on Friday 16th October and brought together more than 350 HR professionals.

Apart from cloud based Shireburn Indigo Payroll, Shireburn also offer an on-premise solution through the Shireburn Payroll & HR System (SPS) that encompasses a fully-fledged Payroll solution, an HR module, a Time and Attendance system, and a web-based Leave Management solution that facilitates the leave request and approvals process within organisations. Shireburn’s software services thousands of employees and managers, and is considered a leader in its field.

Shireburn partners with FHRDShireburn Software is a software products company, specialising in the development and support of business software solutions to make clients succeed.  Shireburn’s Business Suite also includes integrated solutions for accounting, inventory and retail, eCommerce, business intelligence and document management amongst others.

For more information about Shireburn’s Payroll Solutions, call on 2131 9977 or email sales@shireburn.com.


Shireburn Software sponsors FSS Payroll Course

Shireburn sponsors FSS courseShireburn Software is proud to have supported and sponsored a recent Payroll training course, entitled “The FSS System Explained” and organised by iDevelopment. The course was held on the 20th November, at the Excelsior Hotel.

Through such initiatives, Shireburn continues to strengthen its commitment to support local business and education, in particular with this course, the local HR and payroll professions. “Just like our clients, we ensure to keep abreast of all changes occurring in legislation that controls the payroll in Malta,” explained Mr John de Giorgio, Managing Director of Shireburn Software. “We recognise the importance of such training that enables HR and Payroll departments to provide a smoother payroll and HR services to employees. It is our priority to support the industry.”

Shireburn’s leading Payroll and HR Management System encompasses a fully-fledged Payroll solution, an HR module, a Time and Attendance system, and a web-based Leave Management solution that facilitates the leave request and approvals process within organisations. The Shireburn solution services thousands of employees and managers, and is considered a leader in its field.

The 3 hour CPE (Core Competencies) course accredited by the MIA, covered the purpose of the IRD, the FSS (Final Settlement System) and forms, tax bands and categories, social security contributions, end of year submissions and electronic lodgement and other related topics that are pertinent to a successful payroll completion.
For more information about our leading Payroll and HR Solution visit www.shireburn.com/accounting-payroll-software, call on 2131 9977 or email sales@shireburn.com