10 reasons to run your payroll in the Cloud

The 10th reason, from the 10 reasons to run your payroll in the cloud, is that the cloud has given small businesses access to more sophisticated technology that was once only available to Fortune 500 employers.

This is according to the 19th annual Sierra-Cedar HR Systems Survey released in America recently.  The survey also stated that adoption of cloud-based HR technology is increasing rapidly among small companies partly, perhaps, because they have not made the same investments in, and are locked in to, older technology as larger firms often are.

Cloud-based technology is gaining favour. 2016 marked the first year where more than half of organizations surveyed are running their payroll software in the cloud, which is up significantly from 2015.

Companies no longer need their own data centres to run specialized software. Lower capital costs and the scalability of cloud-based software gives smaller companies access to “more sophisticated technology,” says Stacey Harris, vice president of research and analytics at Sierra-Cedar.

If you are still running a manual payroll system, it might be time to consider moving it into the cloud.

Manual versus Cloud

Manual (by hand) payroll systems are filled with tedious, repetitive and complicated tasks such as ensuring timesheets are accurate and expense reports are complete – these tasks are time consuming and open to human error.

Doing a manual payroll takes up hours, often days of work, whereas using a cloud based payroll system would take minutes.  This is just one of the benefits of moving from a manual to a cloud based payroll system.

If you have been thinking about the cloud and moving your business into it, now would be the time to do it, especially if you are considering moving your payroll system there.

It is time to move with technology.  If you haven’t already, you need to get into the cloud, or is that get on the cloud?

For those of you needing a recap of what the cloud is, here it is.

What is this Cloud?

The Cloud is simply a network of remote servers hosted on the internet that you will use to store, manage and process your company data instead of on a server stored in your back office, or even on the bookkeeper’s computer.

Some servers use their computing power to run applications, or deliver a service, while other servers in the network are responsible for storing data.

A financial reason is normally why a business chooses to move to the cloud.  Previously, companies would have to buy their own hardware equipment, the value of which depreciates over time.  But now with the cloud, companies only have to pay for what they use.  This makes it easier to scale use up or down, and quickly.

Working on the cloud allows your company to be efficient and cost-effective.  If your company quickly needs access to more resources, it can scale quickly in the cloud.

And the opposite is true – if it needs to downscale or reduce resources, it can do so just as easily and quickly.

Where the cloud began

Back in the 1950s or 1960s (where the cloud dates back to), a mainframe computer was so big it filled an entire room.  Because mainframes were so expensive, organizations couldn’t afford to purchase a new one for each user, thus they developed time sharing methods, which let multiple users share access to data and CPU time.

Today, this idea of time sharing is the premise of cloud computing.

Types of cloud services

There are 3 categories of cloud computing services, and knowing what they are will help you when making your business decisions.

  1. Infrastructure-as-a-service (IaaS)With this service, you will rent IT infrastructure from a cloud provider on a pay as you go basis.  The infrastructure you will rent includes servers and virtual machines (VMs), storage, networks, operating systems.
  2. Platform as a service (PaaS)This service supplies an on-demand environment for developing, testing, delivering and managing software applications. PaaS is designed to make it easier for developers to quickly create web or mobile apps, without worrying about setting up or managing the underlying infrastructure of servers, storage, network and databases needed for development.
  3. Software as a service (SaaS)This service delivers software applications over the Internet, on demand and typically on a subscription basis.  Cloud providers host and manage the software application and underlying infrastructure and handle any maintenance, like software upgrades and security patching. Users connect to the application over the Internet, usually with a web browser on their phone, tablet or PC.

Now with this said, consider the benefits of hosting your payroll system in the cloud.

Here are some of the reasons why more businesses choose to have their payroll system in the cloud.

Reasons to run your payroll in the Cloud

Reason 1 – No Technology Worries

You don’t have to worry about the technology.  Ironically, by using cloud computing, you have to worry less about the technology you need to run your business.  You will have access to the latest software, and you don’t have to worry about spending money on expensive software, installing this software and keeping it up to date.

This leads onto the next reason – cost.

Reason 2 – Cost

Because you don’t have to keep up to date with the latest software (but you get to use it anyway), costs are kept lower.

Using Cloud-based payroll software provides you with the lower costs of computing, which means they can offer extremely flexible pricing that can fit companies of any size.

Everything is done online, which means you don’t need to install anything or worry about increasing license renewal costs.  Also, updates are done regularly and automatically.

This financial benefit helps reduce overhead costs and other fees as they are managed by the cloud service provider.

Using a cloud payroll system gives you the ability to manage your costs with the flexibility to manage your employee numbers and avoid paying for functionality that you don’t use.

Reason 3 – Secure

Documents are not sitting on a desk and can’t be misplaced if using the cloud.  Instead, your payroll information is stored remotely on secure servers, accessible from anywhere and at any time.

Your data is secure, with standard security precautions in place; regular internal security audits and security scans run often on the servers.  Sensitive data is also encrypted using SSL technology.

In addition to your data being secure, it is also backed up, preventing data loss.  Backing up your data happens constantly, and can be automated so you don’t have to do anything but have peace of mind that your data is safe.

Reason 4 – Decreased Liability

If your system is operating from a server on your business premises, you are responsible for keeping all of the sensitive information safe.

If using the cloud, your data is held way from your business premises and the onus is on the cloud provider to keep it safe.

In addition, your data cannot burn down, get flooded or damaged.  The location of the servers might, but your data is always backed up.  Storage in the cloud is also more affordable than any storage you might need for all your files/paperwork.

Reason 5 – Accessible

Cloud payroll can be accessed on a laptop, tablet or mobile, wherever an internet connection is available – so you can start working in real time and spend less time constrained by administration.

Mobile apps are available for employees to access and update their information anytime or where.

So in a nutshell, a payroll system operating in the cloud gives you freedom to access your payroll run wherever you are, and wherever you are you can access your payroll data, review the figures and finalise your payroll – at the coffee shop, or while away on business.

It is accessible to everyone in a business, serving both the management and the employees.  Managers and payroll teams can run payroll and view reports while out of the office, while employees can manage their personal information, view their payslips and verify their hours worked. The added benefit is freeing up the burden on HR staff for forms and tasks that can be addressed individually by the employee.

Reason 6 – Simpler

Cloud payroll accounting software can simplify processes and reduce manual effort.

It can be easy to set up new clients and add their employees, as well as automate payments to employees, tax authorities and third parties

Cloud payroll software takes payroll processing back to the bare bones, removing unnecessary, over-complicated procedures, making payroll handling almost child-friendly.

Reason 7 – Improved Efficiency

A cloud-based payroll software automatically and accurately calculates the exact amount each employee should be paid. It also helps you to keep track of each employee’s work record such as overtime, absences, taxes, and benefit deductions.

Cloud based payroll software should be offering integration capabilities, such as linking the system to leave applications, timekeeping and overtime pay rates. This not only saves a lot of payroll processing time from having to manually input the necessary payroll information but provides real time information.

Reason 8 – Paperless

As you are managing your payroll system in the cloud, you will be using minimal paper.

It cuts down on payslips and timesheets, as these are completed online or with mobile devices.  There is no lost paperwork either.  You can view payslips or statements online, leaving behind the need for paper.

Reason 9 – Compliant

Keeping on top of employee contract changes, as well as governance changes is a full time job.

Payroll and HR processing is complicated because it’s governed by countless sets of regulations at different levels.  To compensate your employees correctly, you need a cloud-based solution that automatically updates current information about the law and reduces the risk associated with processing your payroll.

Reason 10 – nuQ in the Cloud

nuQ payroll software is an intelligent payroll that thinks for you. It is easy to use and requires no extensive training.  nuQ boasts superior payslip and reporting structures.

They have a service offering which allows clients’ payrolls to be run using the nuQ payroll system in the cloud.  This payroll database is held on a server which is accessed by the client via the internet.

Requirements

  • Basic entry level PC with internet access and Internet Explorer

Benefits

  • Access your nuQ payroll from anywhere
  • Faster support response time

Security

  • Scheduled daily backups
  • Access limited through the use of a secure socket layer and digitally signed certificate

Reasons to run your payroll in the Cloud

The cloud is just another way of saying that you will use the internet to run your applications, and store your data on servers that are not in your offices.

This is a more secure and convenient method of using software, particularly for small businesses.  They don’t have to worry about their IT, and can rather concentrate on their core business.

Having your payroll in the cloud means that your processes – from payroll to time and attendance – will be handled reliably without worrying about having IT staff update software, or ensuring you have enough space on your computer or servers.  Cloud computing also means leading providers are able to offer you software-as-a-service with clearly defined subscription or processing fees.

With the right cloud software solution supporting your business, it can improve the productivity levels, revolutionize the processes, and empower your organization with actionable data for strategic decision-making.  According to the Sierra-Cedar survey, organizations with cloud-based HR environments “reap greater talent and business outcomes from improved decision making across their organization.”

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