Investing in a payroll management software is one of the best things you can do for your business. This is a tool you can count on to crunch all the hard numbers and track any payment – no matter how large or small.
Such efficiency saves you the most valuable thing you have, your time. The right software will keep you from checking budgets over and over, and allow you to actually do more work. It handles a crucial part of your business and lets you take care of the rest.
But, to get the most out of your payroll management software, there are a few things you should know.
Here are twelve ways to make this investment worth every penny.
1. Take Your Time Searching for the Right Software
It’s one thing to understand the value of a payroll management software, and another to recognize the difference between various software options. Your business only deserves the best, which is why you should do your research before committing to a service.
Some payment systems will only handle one part of your financial management operations. They may be great at automating internal bookkeeping and outgoing invoices, but may not have the power to forecast your future financial needs.
Make sure everything you need is covered in one place.
This gives you the most accuracy when reviewing different numbers. Not to mention, it makes your finances much easier to handle than if you had everything in separate systems.
2. Check the Range of Services and Fees
As you’re looking at the various services offered by different payroll management software options, always check the price tag. Some systems will have a starting rate, then increase depending on the services you need.
Others will bundle everything in one price, which tends to be the simpler way of assessing a software’s value. Whichever pricing approach you prefer, always look at the total amount you can expect to pay before moving forward.
Make note of annual versus monthly costs, too.
3. Test a Few Payroll Management Software Options
Having trouble deciding which payroll management software to pull the trigger on? Try two or three of them out.
Many of these systems will have a trial run option. Or they’ll offer a virtual product tour where you can see how everything works with mock numbers.
This gives you a feel for the use and function of the system. Such an experience is priceless when deciding on an important asset like this. When you do a trial run, you’re able to see just how well a software follows through on what it proposes it can do.
4. Commit, and Set Everything Up
Once you commit to a software you prefer over the others, don’t just pay for it and forget about it. You have to dive in and make sure everything is set up properly.
Block off plenty of time in your schedule to get to know the ins and outs of your new payroll management software. Be patient entering your numbers and transferring any other data.
After all, any future financial functions will be the result of how you enter numbers in the first place! Then, play with the user interface and begin adjusting to this new tool. The more time you spend on it now, the less time you’ll have to go back and figure out something later.
5. Manage, Manage, Monitor
Speaking of going back in to look at numbers, always remember, as much as a payroll management software can do for you, you’re still the one making the decisions.
Keep an eye on things like reoccurring invoices and payments.
There will be times when you decide to cancel a partnership with a vendor or service, and as such, take this payment schedule out of your software. Then, there are all the new expenses and operations you’ll have to account for as your business grows.
With each adjustment, take the time to monitor your software. This helps you catch any errors before they happen, and prevents the chance of them occurring more than once. These efforts will save you generous amounts of time and money in the long-run.
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6. Ask for Feedback from Employees
As a manager, remember that some of your payment systems aren’t just about you and the software you use. There are things like regular payroll and bonus payouts that directly affect your employees.
Thus, it’s worth getting their feedback when you introduce a new payroll management system into the business. Be transparent about this change in operations and what your goals are with it, at least as far as internal payouts go.
Then, remind your people that they have a voice. Ask them to give this new method a try for a few weeks and give you feedback. You may find that some employees like the new system much better, while others may have a few pointers or even outright complaints.
The latter doesn’t necessarily mean you have to change your new way of doing things. It might just mean tweaking some of the functions in your payroll software, rather than getting an entirely new one.
7. Touch Base with a Customer Service Representative
During the learning curve of switching over to a new payroll management software, reach out to a customer service representative. This is your person to lean on as you’re setting everything up, and trying different ways of doing things.
A software’s customer service person should know your new system like the back of their hand. They will understand all the best ways of doing things and be able to offer suggestions as you create your business profile.
Some will let you take a trial and error approach, offering guidance as you ask. Others will walk you through your software step by step.
Either way, this is a resource you can’t forget about. Talking to a real person who is well-educated on the product you’re trying to use is much better than trying to figure out the whole software yourself.
8. Explore the Various Functions and Uses
If you do prefer a solo approach to setting up your software, make time to go back in and check out the various options available. You’ll likely find new ways of doing things that you may not have noticed the first time around.
Many payroll management software systems come with a handful of options to give businesses the solutions they need. If you only stick with the first one that catches your eye, you may be missing out on what other tools within the program can do!
9. Keep Track of Everything Coming and Going
No matter what your preferred use of different functions and overall setup is, you’ve got to stay on top of your finances. A payroll management software can only do so much – the rest is up to you to ensure things are working properly.
This goes for small businesses and startups as well as multi-million operations. Regardless of how much money you’re working with, you have to make sure every dollar is accurately accounted for.
The best way to do this is to track all the payments that go out, and everything that comes in.
Thankfully, your software will make this much easier, but you still have to check in on it regularly.
10. Make Notes
As you’re going over different payouts and received payments, you may find something that stands out from your normal way of doing things. This doesn’t always mean something is wrong, especially if you just started or ended a contract.
But, it should be something you make a note of to look into further. Many payroll management systems come with a notes function. You may not think much of it as you’re setting everything up, but when a unique payment catches your eye, it will come in handy.
Notes also serve as reminders or as explanations for certain payments. They can help you keep track of a special payment you have to make, or provide a little insight into something you paid off as you go back through the accounts later.
11. Double Check Financial Forecasts
Notes are great when you want to refresh your memory about something you had to pay in the past. But, there’s another function that helps you prepare for future financial operations – forecasting.
A payroll management system that comes with a forecasting function is usually better than one that just handles bookkeeping or invoicing. After all, the main reason you want to manage your money well now is to make better use of it later.
When everything is in one place, the business’s short and long-term goals become easier to track and obtain. Who knows, with simple and accurate forecasting, you may reach certain goals much sooner than you originally estimated!
12. Download the Software’s App
Since money is pretty much always the bottom line of what a business does, it’s something that tends to be constantly on the mind. Many executives are always looking for new ways to stretch a budget further, or to make money faster.
As such, it pays to be able to check in with finances while on-the-go. You never know when a bright idea will come to you, or if you just want to double check that certain payments went through. An app makes all of this and more easy to do, wherever you are.
Don’t forget to download your payroll management software app to your phone.
Scale Your Business Smarter
No matter how you manage your payroll software, you can’t afford to run your accounts payable and receivable without one. This is the best tool to keep everything in check.
It helps you stay on track of upcoming payments and account for new investments in the future, among many other things. The better you handle such tasks, the better your business as a whole scales.
For help making this process easier, click here.