Making the most of HRMS payroll data
Unused or underutilized payroll data causes wasted HR staff time, as duplicated efforts and work often ensue to make up for this data gap. Here are several significant areas where your HRMS payroll data can add value to your business:
1) Use “datification” to drive business choices
The availability of data in your HRMS today has progressed greatly from 10 years ago. HRMS are able to collect many data elements across a wide area of HR functionality. The challenge is to make the jump from a collection of fields to useful business insights or “datification”—data-based decisioning. For example, overtime costs are a drain on any budget and often receive close scrutiny as a standalone activity. It’s necessary to take this data a step further and follow the system trail back to the source. Does your HRMS Absence module allow you to extract last-minute call-outs and tie them back to overtime? Or is your overtime due to a perennial staff shortage? If a lack of headcount is the answer, is the reason related to budget constraints in hiring, or are requisitions slow to be filled? For better decision-making, use the HRMS data to bring payroll data together with other HR data to paint the full picture and drive toward anticipating and predicting costs.
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2) Payroll data creates the “full employee picture”
Are your HR, Compensation, and Payroll staff a strong team working together, or do you have silo efforts? I’ve seen employee pay reviews by compensation professionals that determine that an equity adjustment is needed. However, it’s a faulty analysis when it only focuses on base pay and leaves behind “traditional” payroll data, such as a myriad of allowances. Your Compensation and Payroll staff must be on the same page for strategic reviews in order to get the best results for your organization as well as for your employees. A referral bonus probably shouldn’t be considered as part of an employee’s total compensation, but one-time bonuses that happen with regularity are often missed. This is where your HRMS payroll data needs to be reviewed and, potentially, used.
3) Payroll data allows a linkage to bottom-line financials
Do you perform a variety of necessary and important tasks in your organization, but find that ultimately they are not linked? For example, we all go through an annual budget process to create an HR budget, and it is often reviewed with the actuals of the prior year to determine how closely it was kept. Then there are annual merit processes in which employees are rewarded for peak performance. The HRMS keeps the performance review data as well as the salary increase percentages. How often do you bring the performance data back into your budgetary process? Does your line item for salary increases reflect a majority of “average” performers in low-cost locations? Payroll data lets you compare and make a link to ensure that your estimates allow you to pay for top performers as well.
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