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Setting up Automated Pay Runs

SOLVEDby QuickBooksQuickBooks Online Payroll15Updated June 09, 2021

Looking to streamline your payroll processing? Learn how to automate pay runs by automating your pay schedules.

To set up an automated pay schedule:

  1. Select Employees from the left hand menu.
  2. Select the Payroll Settings tab then select Pay Schedules (located under Pay Run Settings).
  3. Select the pay schedule you wish to automate.
  4. Under Pay Run Automation select Click here to configure.

From here you’ll be guided through a four-step process for setting up an automated pay run, we’ve provided additional guidance below:  

This screen details the pay run dates and timesheet import options.

Schedule first Pay Run creation on: This field will pre-populate with today's date and the upcoming hour. (Automated pay runs are scheduled on the hour). You can amend the date and time by clicking on the calendar icon. 

  • Note: There may be a time delay as to when the pay run is finalised due to the volume/size of the pay run. if you have scheduled the pay run for 3 pm, this does not necessarily mean the pay run will also be finalised at 3pm.

Schedule last Pay Run creation: This defaults to Never, which means that there is no end date to this automated pay schedule. If you want to set an end date, select on the dropdown to enter a date and time.

For initial Pay Period Ending: If you have previously created pay runs for this pay schedule, the value that will appear.  If this is a newly created pay schedule or no pay runs have been created for this pay schedule, today's date will be displayed here. Either way, you can always edit the date shown by clicking on the calendar icon.

Timesheet import: If timesheets are enabled in the business, you will be provided with additional options for importing timesheets into the pay run:

  • Import Timesheets for current pay period: This will include all approved timesheets applicable for the selected pay period.
  • Import all unpaid timesheets up to current pay period: This will include all approved timesheets applicable as well as any other approved and unprocessed timesheets relating to previous pay periods.
  • Don't import timesheets: Select this option if you are processing a pay run and do not want to import any approved timesheets.

Monthly pay schedule automation settings: 

Run subsequent Pay Runs:  Determine exactly when you want the pay run processed so that it is on a consistent day each month. You can choose it to be either a specific date each month or the 1st, 2nd, 3rd or 4th day (of your choosing) of the week.

Non work day Pay Runs:

  • Process Pay Run on preceding work day if the Pay Run Creation Date falls on a weekend or public holiday: By ticking this checkbox, the pay run creation date (as set in the above setting) will automatically adjust to the preceding day if the original date ends up falling on a weekend or public holiday. It will then revert back to the original setting the following month, on the basis the date does not end up falling on a weekend or public holiday.
  • Automatically adjust the Date Paid to the preceding work day if the Date Paid falls on a weekend or public holiday: By ticking this checkbox, the date paid will automatically adjust to the preceding day if the original date ends up falling on a weekend or public holiday. It will then revert back to the original setting the following month, on the basis the date does not end up falling on a weekend or public holiday. 

Select Next to proceed to Step 2.

In this screen, you can select the pay run warnings that will stop the automated pay run if triggered. 

All unticked pay run warnings will be ignored and therefore not cause the automated pay run to stop.

Note: The Leave and Expense request selections may impact the pay run. This article expands on these settings further depending on the request scenario.

The other setting on this screen is to select the users that will need to be notified:

  • of any events causing a pay run to stop
  • of any post pay run errors, ie payroll journal not posting successfully
  • when the pay run has successfully finalised

The only users that can be selected are those with full access permissions within the business. Nominate who you wish to be notified, then select Next.

In this screen, you will configure the level of automation for each component involved in finalising the pay run. This screen will default to manually finalising the pay run, however if you select Finalise Pay Run immediately, the following settings will appear:

  • Journals:
    • Export journals immediately: the payroll journal will be posted automatically once the pay run is automatically finalised. The selected users will be notified via email if there is an issue with the journal posting.
    • Export journals manually: a full access user will be required to post the journal from within the pay run once the pay run is finalised.
  • Create pay event: This option will only appear if the business is enabled for STP.
    • Create pay event immediately: the pay event will be created automatically. The selected user(s) will be notified via email that the pay run is finalised and that they will now need to lodge the pay event with the ATO.
    • Create pay event manually: a full access user will be required to create and lodge the pay event from within the pay run.
      Note: We do not lodge the pay event with the ATO automatically. This is because:
    • Users must complete a declaration prior to lodging the event and we cannot do this on behalf of a user.
    • External parties lodging pay events on behalf of their clients must obtain approval in the form of a Client Authority. Again, this is something we cannot do on behalf of the business.
  • Publish Pay Slips:
    • Make pay slips available to employees immediately: Pay slips will be automatically published immediately at the time the pay run is finalised.
    • Make pay slips available on the Date Paid at 'x' (a specified time)". This will ensure pay slips are automatically published at the time specified on the pay date of that pay run.
    • Do not make pay slips available until the "Publish pay slips" button is clicked: a full access user will be required to publish the pay slips manually from within the pay run.
    • Employee Notifications: Specify if you want employees to be notified of their pay slip by email or SMS.
  • Report Packs: (This option will only appear if there are report packs set up in the  business.)
    • If you select Run the following Report Packs, a list of all configured report packs will appear. You can then select which report packs are to be sent automatically once the pay run is finalised.
      • Report packs are sent to the recipient setup within the report pack setting, NOT the user(s) set up in Step 2 of this wizard. If you want the user(s) to be sent the report packs, you will need to add them as a recipient to the support pack.
      • If a "?" icon appears to the right of a report pack name this indicates that the report pack is set up on a recurring schedule and so the recipients may receive it more than once,  

 Select Next to proceed to Step 4.  

Summary

This section is a summary of all selected settings. This gives you the opportunity to review all choices. To make any changes, select Previous until you get to the relevant screen that requires a change. You will then need to select Next until you get to the last screen and then select Complete to finish the setup.

Note: if an automated pay schedule is set up, you are still required to download ABA and/or BPAY file from the pay run, once finalised.

Stopping the Automation of a Pay Schedule

If you no longer want a pay schedule to be processed automatically, follow the steps below:

  1. Select Employees from the left-hand menu 
  2. Select the Payroll Settings tab then select Pay Schedules (located under Pay Run Settings). 
  3. Select the automated pay schedule you wish to pause 
  4. Under Pay Run Automation select Stop 
  5. Select Delete then select Save 

Pausing the Automation of a Pay Schedule

If you want to pause the automation of a pay schedule:

  1. Select Employees from the left-hand menu 
  2. Select the Payroll Settings tab then select Pay Schedules (located under Pay Run Settings). 
  3. Select the automated pay schedule you wish to pause 
  4. Under Pay Run Automation select Pause 

Resuming the automation of a Pay Schedule

  1. Select Employees from the left-hand menu 
  2. Select the Payroll Settings tab then select Pay Schedules (located under Pay Run Settings). 
  3. Select the automated pay schedule you wish to pause 
  4. Under Pay Run Automation select Resume

 

Content sourced from KeyPay

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