The accurate and timely payment of staff is not only necessary it is a legal obligation. There are, however, usually a number of different ways that staff are paid within the same company. Typically there are hourly paid production staff, weekly paid office staff and monthly paid more senior staff. With the advent of the employment contracts a lot of the complex allowances and rates of pay dependant of the hours being worked have disappeared although they are still available in the latest releases of this system. Payment by cash is almost obsolete, most staff are paid by direct credits straight in to their bank accounts but it is still available here. Some companies give bonuses outside of the normal payments these can be paid by cheque as an override to the normal disbursements.
The SERENADE Payroll module is designed to fully integrate with the General Ledger or to stand-alone as necessary. The module has great flexibility. All forms of pay, tax, deductions and allowances are given separate codes, and any one employee may have any number of these codes for his or her pay for any period. Each employee may also have a personal set of standard codes that can be used to generate their pay.
The concept is to allow the person generating the pay to be able to process pay as simply as possible so that any changes to hours worked can be entered as quickly as possible and the resulting pay slip (showing summary by type) can be displayed as well as line items. In the situation when salaried staff are involved the whole pay may be generated without any amendment (except for staff on sick leave or holiday.) so the process can be total automatic.
The necessary direct credits and cheques can be produced.
Each payment to an employee may commit the employer to associated liabilities that are not disbursed until later. Often (though not necessarily) such payments are made to other parties, not to the employee. Typical examples are Accident Compensation levies and Superannuation. Other items such as Holiday pay can be an 'allowance' based on the hours worked and the wage earned.
SERENADE's Payroll module uses the concept of 'Provisions' to cater for this situation where the company is liable for payment of monies not deducted from the employee's pay. E.g. holiday pay.
- Employees classified by Location/Branch and Department
- Any number of rates of pay, tax, allowances, deduction and provision codes
- A 'standard' set of codes and hours/values for an employee
- Search on number or surname to find employees.
- An Employee may be in any one of 6 payment frequencies
- Automatic, sequential or manual generation of pay
- Up to 4 uplifts to a standard pay rate to cater for overtime
- Up to 5 direct credits per employee
- Payment by cash minimum, direct credits, cheque and cash (or any combination of these)
- Rounding of pay (to a maximum of a multiple of $100.00) to keep smaller coins out of pay packets
- Direct credits put to a file for supply to the bank's on-line automated banking systems
- Ability to amend a payment after it has been made
- Creating of the file to be sent to the Inland Revenue
- Check list of payments and amendments allowed until correct
- Viewing of employee details showing summary totals and the contents of pay slips
- Extensive listings of employees by location and department
- Extensive payment and deduction and allowance analysis
Tailoring a pay
SERENADE'S Payroll module gives you great flexibility in tailoring a pay for an employee. You can control:
- How the pay is generated
- The time unit against which the pay is calculated
- How the pay is disbursed to the employee.
These elements are discussed further in the following paragraphs.
Any particular pay for an employee may be generated in any of three ways:
- From scratch
- From that employee's standard codes
- From the last period's pay.
Pay Periods / Time Units
An employee's pay may be based on any one of the following time units:
- Bi-monthly (twice every month)
When an hourly pay period is specified for an employee, the payment is calculated per hour of employment, but the actual frequency of payment is at your discretion. It would typically be weekly, but can be more than once a week or can be fortnightly or monthly.
Each employee may have:
- A cash minimum requirement
- Up to 5 direct credits
- Any balance paid as a cheque or cash.
A cash pay may be rounded to a selected sum (e.g. $1) and the employee may specify a note and coin requirement.
Basic processing is simple:
- Generate the pay details. (You have the option of doing this by location/department).
- Print the pay report.
- Check the report, and correct any errors.
- To make the actual payments the processing:
- Generates payslips
- Prints cheques
- Creates direct credits for sending to the bank
- Prepares the cash analysis
- Posts to the General Ledger
- Updates the analysis history
There are two ways the system can process the tax tables:
- From the code tables supplied by the IRD
- From the simpler (but less accurate) percentage formula that is acceptable to the IRD.
Tax Tables, or the details for the generation of the deduction, are available from your dealer and are updated as required for IRD compliance.
ACC is a deduction that is included as part of the tax deduction. The present situation has the employer paying ACC separately from the employee and possibly to an insurance carrier other than the government. The employee ACC is shown as a separate tax on the employee's pay slip and file details as it has to be calculated separately and could be subject to change as per the employer.
The tax that is deductible from an employee's pay can be made up of three elements:
- ACC deductions
- Student Loan deductions
The IRD used to compound them in to one value but require them to be shown separately or in combination on various returns. It is thus necessary for the system to calculate them separately and so be able to show them separately for the tax returns. This is specifically true for the new IR348 - electronic return. A student repaying a loan will have all 3 codes.
Allowances and Deductions
The system allows a virtually unlimited number of allowances and deductions. These are used to cater for things like Meal Allowances and Social Club deductions. Any employee may have any or all of these as 'standards' on their details. These may be a straight value or may be a percentage based on the Gross or Nett pay etc. They may have a threshold (over which the rate applies) or an upper limit after which the rate does not apply. The Child Support deduction is an example of a threshold where an employee must retain 60% of their nett (after tax) pay (excluding Student loan repayment). The Student loan repayment is another example. The system still retains the ability to link these allowance and deductions to the number of hours worked or the actual starting and ending times although this is now mostly obsolete.
The IRD has introduced an 'Electronic filing' system that was said to be optional but actually turns out not so to be. This requires more detail than the old IR12 and wants it all to be separated. The system produces an ASCII file suitable for sending to the IRD and with this a report that shows the values the file contains. This report should be used to do the manual return if the IRD will not yet accept electronic returns from your company.