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Payroll management

A beginner’s guide to payroll management

Payroll is a document or software that companies and organisations use to handle daily management activities. It's necessary to track hours, pay wages, track gross and net pay, and handle deductions and withholdings. It provides owners and administrators with a full list of employees who receive payment for the work they do for your business. It also provides you with a summary of hours worked, how much pay has been issued by the employee and as a total. 

What is payroll management?

To effectively manage your financial activities, you need to manage payroll. This includes the remuneration strategy the company uses, which can include deductions, leaves, and bonuses. It will also produce payslips for your employees, which detail the breakdown of their salary or wages. It allows you to manage the paying of salaries and wages and will collate your payroll inputs. It can also determine the correct remuneration figures. 

Payroll's primary function is to assist businesses in providing timely wages and salaries to employees. But it features additional functions to assist with other essential activities. A reliable payroll solution can assist with tax deductions, withholdings, holiday pay, sick leave, superannuation, and even rostering. It can also facilitate your record-keeping since you need to keep payroll records for seven years in Australia. 

Effectively, it is the administration and management of employee financial filings, including wages, bonuses, deductions, and more. It is also an effective way to keep an eye on your spending and manage your cash flow more effectively. 

What does your payroll management process look like? 

While many companies opt for payroll outsourcing services, small businesses often prefer to use payroll software. Before you choose to outsource the management process, consider your options. 

Methods of payroll management 

There are three key payroll options for businesses to choose from in terms of payroll management. 

  • Excel spreadsheet
  • Payroll management software
  • Outsourced

Payroll management software 

This is the simplest approach for businesses of all sizes. There are a wide variety of reliable applications to choose from. These systems provide a template and you input the details and input factors for each employee. The size of your company will determine which software or package is most appropriate for your daily operations. 


Many small businesses use an Excel spreadsheet to manage their payroll. They use a template that provides them with the calculations and input the information as necessary. As simple and affordable as this is, in theory, it is the most prone to errors. An Excel spreadsheet is difficult to manage. 


For businesses with vast resources, there is the option to outsource the payroll process. A third-party provider handles the process on a company's behalf. Every pay cycle, the company has to compile the updated schedule and send it to the consultant to process it. The consultant is then responsible for reviewing, updating, and handling payments and deductions for each employee.

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Payroll software vs. manual system

What is the difference between manually handling payroll and using payroll software? Both require you to input information. However, the manual system does not contain checks and balances the software does. Payroll software accurately calculates pay, taking wages, withholdings, and superannuation into account. 

Payroll software can calculate overtime, sick leave, holiday pay, and bonuses. A payroll software like QuickBooks can ensure you adhere to legal regulations or company policy. It simplifies the process.

Payroll software can help you easily track requests for sick days, holidays or leave. It can also manage paid time accrual that is paid out when an employee leaves. It will help you keep up to date with wage and tax laws, which will save you time and ensure you remain legally compliant. Your payroll software will automatically pay your employees. 

One of the most important aspects of payroll software is that it reduces the risk of human error common in manual data entry. 

The benefits of using a payroll management system 

Payroll management is a repetitive process and for many, it's a time-consuming annoyance. This is why mistakes often happen when there’s no payroll system in place.

Optimising the payroll process with reliable software, or a fully managed payroll service can minimise those mistakes. Additionally, with the right payroll software, you can use cloud storage to save all your information, giving you more flexibility to access the data remotely. This also provides you with a back-up in case of hardware damage or a system failure. 

Many companies spend significant amounts of time trying to manage the tax aspect of payroll. Effective payroll management will ease this pressure and lighten the load on whoever handles the payroll process. 

If you do not properly manage your payroll data, you might run into issues surrounding holidays, bonuses, and overtime wages. Not to mention the varying deductions and income tax across your employee base. 

Payroll management saves you time, which allows you to focus on your core business. A high-quality payroll system such as QuickBooks Payroll can provide you with extra security, whether you opt for payroll software to manage yourself or you prefer a fully managed payroll service. It's a cost-effective way to manage your payroll. 

Taking advantage of QuickBooks payroll software

QuickBooks Payroll Software powered by Employment Hero will provide you with a variety of payroll functions such as an employee self-service portal to allow your team to access their roster and apply for leave and shift swaps. 

Before you choose your payroll management software, consider what you need. QuickBooks Payroll can provide you with an outsourced service if you want to outsource your payroll. But, you can also opt for the software and manage it on your own. QuickBooks can provide you with the payroll services you need and the peace of mind you deserve. 

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