Accounting and Finance Insight Series – Payroll

Hunter Campbell are invested in the future of the Accounting and Finance profession. Using our technical understanding and specialist expertise we bring you the Hunter Campbell Accounting and Finance Insight Series. Profiling roles within the Accounting and Finance sector, including jobs in demand, wages and employment prospects with a feature on how this has been impacted by Covid.

In our fifth article we spotlight Payroll, common job titles within this job family are Payroll Administrator, Payroll Officer, Senior Payroll or Payroll Manager.

Purpose of the role
Payroll is a crucial part of any business and is the process of paying employees. The function needs to be consistent and is relied upon as a key factor to the financial stability of an organisation. Generally part of the finance team, it is also closely associated to HR. Payroll is responsible forcalculating payable hours, commissions, bonuses, taxes, and deductions. It also involves processing new employees, promotions, and terminations, while issuing statements detailing earnings and deductions. Issuing and delivering pay checks to employees and investigating and resolving payroll discrepancies are also central to the role.

Skills required

  • Strong attention to detail
  • Highly organised
  • Microsoft Excel
  • System specific experience – multiple payroll systems in the market

With continual updates in technology and changing preferences in the way in which people prefer to be paid, especially millennials who prefer to be paid in real time, we anticipate these skills will be crucial to payroll professionals in the future:

Future skills required

  • Commercial acumen
  • Analytical thinkers
  • Ability to pick up new systems/ technology

Career advice / prospects
Technology is significantly impacting the future of Payroll. Spreadsheets are on the out and we expect to see manual payroll become a thing of the past within the next few years. Upgrades to cloud-based payroll systems are in play throughout the market, the key benefit being it allows employees to directly input data which payroll staff can then work with, resulting in less queries and better cyber security. The introduction of AI will likely simplify tasks further, saving time and money and therefore, resulting in a reduction in the need for payroll staff.

Currently, Hunter Campbell are seeing a moderate to high demand for payroll professionals and a low supply. Continuing the current trend of the Accounting and Finance sector, it is a candidate short space with little influx of payrollers, as typically this isn’t a sought-after field when leaving school or university. Senior payrollers also tend to move into systems / project-based roles as the pay is more lucrative, which is influencing salaries as candidates are looking for a minimum pay rise of $5,000 to move.

Financial wellbeing is to be integrated more closely with payroll which will see Payroll and HR playing a more strongly aligned role.

Salary guide / trends

  • Payroll Administrator; $60,000 – $65,000
  • Payroll Officer (sole charge); $70,000 – $80,000
  • Senior Payroll; $80,000 – $100,000
  • Payroll Manager; $100,000 – $140,000

If you would like to find out more about the role of Payroll, please contact Katie Kelly. Katie specialises in Accountancy Support in a permanent and contract capacity, specifically payroll, accounts payable, receivable, credit control and assistant accountants. For more news and views, visit our website by clicking here, see what opportunities we have available here or follow us on LinkedIn.

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