The Great
Transformation Guide

ADP has authored a series of thought-provoking articles exploring the relationship between organisations and payroll. From the HR and payroll challenges of global expansion to the rich resources of payroll data; from the payroll skills shortage to the true cost of inefficient processes; this series helps to identify and solve obstacles and appreciate and embrace the ever-greater asset payroll can become to companies navigating a treacherous business landscape.

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How the payroll skills shortage could impact your global expansion plans

XX Month 2024 0 Comments

From the moment an employee steps foot in a new country, they must be paid according to the compliance regulations of that country.

Yet according to ADP's 'Guide to payroll skills for internationally expanding businesses', almost a quarter (22 per cent) of payroll leaders list 'paying employees' as one of their biggest challenges when expanding into new geographies.

Finding and recruiting qualified payroll staff plays a big part in this - as ADP reports that twenty-two per cent find it hard to recruit payroll employees in local markets.

Given the current state of the labour market, it is hardly surprising that ADP discovered over half (54 per cent) of business leaders say their payroll service is or has been affected by a shortage of payroll staff.

But are businesses looking in the right place, or looking for the right skills?

Payroll: aspirational profession or job you stumble upon?

Payroll is regarded as a multidisciplinary profession in only a few countries, such as France and Italy where degrees in HR management and payroll are offered. Despite its complexities payroll can be perceived as an 'accidental career', whereby someone finds themselves in the payroll team after covering a colleague's extended leave or being seconded from another department.

Sixty-four per cent of organisations say they are training existing nonpayroll staff to cover payroll jobs; proof that, in many places, payroll is seen as a job that anyone can do. Yet ordinarily it takes companies four to six months to onboard even credentialled payroll talent - despite the fact that pay is typically a company's biggest business spend.

Payroll and the talent crunch

Tight labour market conditions are further impacting payroll and increased demand for talent is pushing salaries higher.

Demographic-related reasons: Historically, payroll teams had a high number of older workers. Many escalated retirement plans during the pandemic and left the payroll function vulnerable to attrition, while women are overrepresented. Melanie Pizzey says, "The 'always-on' nature of payroll jobs may not lend itself to part-time work, which disadvantages the higher number of women who want this working schedule. Current organisational practices don't facilitate job sharing arrangements, which women favour".

Skills and responsibilities

While many organisations are now reviewing how to do payroll with fewer people, others are in the process of upskilling existing payroll staff and changing how they work. The profile of a payroll professional is changing into a more stategic function; adding value to organisations are they expand.

Download ADP's Guide to payroll skills for internationally expanding businesses to discover the options for tackling the payroll talent shortage and learn about the latest skills and responsibilities required of a modern payroll team.

Download The Guide to payroll skills for internationally expanding businesses

Sources: ADP