COVID is the tipping point for cloud payroll
In the last decade, the amount of attention paid to streamlining and improving external-facing operations, from point of sale to invoicing to digital payments, through cloud-based technology has grown exponentially.
But what about internal processes such as payroll and human resources? A pre-COVID-19 survey from Deloitte found that support for cloud-based payroll services was on the rise as 39% of organizations adopted them — up 14% from 2015. Another 21% said they were evaluating a move to the cloud.
In the face of the current pandemic, what was a growing trend became a necessity for many businesses as shelter-in-place orders changed how they operate day to day. Here’s how cloud-based payroll and HR services have helped businesses, and why they are here to stay.
Perhaps the most important benefit of cloud-based payroll services is the ability to access data anytime, anywhere. Employers can review and approve payroll in minutes from their computer or phone — no matter what else is on their plate that day. And accountants and business owners can collaborate virtually, ensuring that paychecks go out and taxes and filings are both accurate and on time.
Right now, cloud-based software is essential as employees continue to work remotely due to either local restrictions or changes in company policies. In OnPay’s State of Small Business survey, we found 65% of small businesses — almost a 50% increase over pre-pandemic time — will make working from home part of their HR practices even after restrictions are lifted.
The switch to remote employment will require business owners to evaluate many operational functions to ensure that everything can run smoothly no matter where they or their workers are located. As workers become decentralized, cloud-based payroll and HR will be a key way to make it easier to meet compliance regulations for multiple jurisdictions.
For example, cloud-based tools help businesses stay up-to-date on the tax code in all the places where workers are based, so HR and finance teams won’t need to develop expertise in each state.
Working from the cloud allows employers to share handbook updates or onboard new hires from anywhere, and workers can access their employee portal to request PTO or sign off on essential documents. Plus, cloud-based HR practices make it easier for employers to bring on talent from outside their city or state — one of the key benefits of offering remote work.
Moving everything to the cloud also improves collaboration and creates a secure way to improve access to key information across an organization.
Cloud-based payroll makes it easy to pay employees electronically. Employers have access to options for direct deposit or digital paycards so they can avoid any headaches that come with printing paper checks or delays in getting them to employees. If employers use time-keeping software that integrates with their payroll provider, they can also be sure that punches for hourly workers are being tracked and paid correctly.