Archive for the ‘Outsourcing Payroll’ Category

Top Six Blog Postings and Topics for 2012

December 26th, 2012 2 comments

As we look toward 2013 and new resolutions, it’s also that time of year to look back and recount the past twelve months.  For the Serenic blog, we’ve seen a wide range of educational and fun posts written for the nonprofit, NGO and public sector.  We thought it would be interesting to see what the most visited posts were and to share them again!

Popular topics included cloud accounting, donor management, payroll, accounting tips and Dynamics NAV; but, the most visited posts and tags searched are listed below:

Top posts and tags for 2012:

Please share and revisit the links in case you missed them the first time around.

Now onto 2013, here’s hoping for peace, happiness and good will.


Payroll for Microsoft Dynamics NAV Presented at NAVUG Forum in Seattle

October 25th, 2012 No comments

We recently presented and hosted at NAVUG (Microsoft Dynamics NAV Users Group) which was a great success.  NAVUG is an annual user conference held just for the Microsoft Dynamics NAV community. There were approximately 300 NAV end users who attended, and we had the pleasure to visit with quite a few at our booth.

During the expo, we presented to a forum of existing Serenic HCM users as well as NAV users who are looking for a fully integrated payroll and HR solution.  Carla Feagan, Serenic Channel Sales Manager, co-presented with an existing Serenic HCM end user, Bonita Amos, Bri-Chem Corp Business Application Analyst.

The presentation, Payroll for Microsoft Dynamics NAV, shared the benefits of a fully integrated payroll solution:

1. Cost Effective

  • One upfront fee
  • No pre-funding for payroll
  • Rely on in house knowledge
  • Access to your data

2. Flexibility and Reduction of Workload

  • More time to complete payroll
  • Freedom to run payroll whenever you want
  • No re-keying of information

3. Increased Accuracy

  • Posting directly to integrated areas: G/L, Bank, A/P, Jobs and HR
  • Reads directly from G/L accounts and dimensions

Despite the presentation being after lunch on the last day, we had an extremely engaged audience with lots of questions and laughter heard throughout the hallways.  We were still being asked questions as we were packing up to leave for the next presentation.  The feedback received after the presentation was extremely positive, and we have been asked to do another similar presentation online for the NAVUG members.

If you missed it and want more information about the Serenic HCM Payroll solution, download a fact sheet, white paper, or case study. You’ll see how it can give you flexibility, access to your own data, a strong payroll calculation engine, and reduce workload!

Payroll for Microsoft Dynamics NAV Presented at NAVUG Forum in Seattle by Serenic Software


Deciding on Outsourcing Payroll

December 28th, 2010 No comments

Outsourcing certainly has its benefits, but before you decide to hand off your payroll hassles to an outsourced solution provider, stop and consider not only your company’s needs, but also the potential pay-per-view costs you might encounter along the way. Which steps in the payroll process cause you the most pain? Are you willing to pay for the convenience of outsourcing them? Will outsourcing truly shift the burden? And are you ready to hand over some (or all) of the control of your valuable information? Can you live with level of detail provided by a service provider or do you need more insight into your labor costs? Use Appendix A to help determine whether an outsourced solution is best for your company.

Appendix A

The true cost of payroll outsourcing.

Use this worksheet to calculate the true cost of an outsourced payroll solution.

We hope you enjoyed this series on helping you decide whether or not to outsource your payroll, and the real costs of doing so!

You can read all of the Outsourcing Payroll posts here: “Outsourcing Payroll

Download the full whitepaper here to start learning about managing payroll in your global organization!

Outsourcing Payroll Part 3 – The (real) Cost of Doing Payroll–continued

December 21st, 2010 No comments

After taking care of hiring, paying and funding, the next steps are remitting, filing recording and analyzing. Let’s take you through how these are implemented.


After the employees are paid, it is time to get any withheld amounts to the proper authorities. Outsourced service providers will normally manage remittances to federal and state (or provincial) authorities. But they may not automatically make payments to your benefit providers, credit unions, or specific vendors (e.g. auto loan companies).

Both in-house and outsourced payroll solutions can help you capture amounts withheld and payable. Depending on the way you structure your arrangement with an outsourced payroll provider, they can also manage your remittance directly, thus reducing the effort needed to generate checks. In-house solutions generally require additional steps to print checks and then mail them to the appropriate payee.


Compared to figuring out how much to pay and getting remittances to the right place, tax returns are a cinch. By the time the returns are due, all of the supporting information has been accumulated in your application of choice. The service provider or in-house team member runs a report or prints a form and then sends it to the appropriate authority.

Other than keeping track of due dates, which becomes the responsibility of the provider in an outsourced solution, there is little difference between the amount of work required under either method.


Labor charges typically represent a large chunk of operating costs. The next step is to get those costs from your payroll system into your general ledger so they can be properly reflected on your financial statements. Most outsourced payroll solutions offer limited integration capabilities via a file transfer. In other cases, they provide you with a printed list of transactions by GL account number. Your team must then make manual journal entries to update your system. There are normally limits on the level of detail provided and on the number of departments that are supported.

Using an in-house system, transactions automatically flow to your general ledger. You have control over the level of detail to record and have the option to create as many categories of costs as you need. You also have the benefit of timely updates and integration with a job costing system, if needed.

An in-house payroll solution will simplify the process of getting transactions from payroll to your general ledger.


When you come right down to it, after getting your employees paid, the main purpose of any payroll system is to capture information that helps you manage your business. You might need to analyze your labor costs by product, department, or location. You might want to compare costs by week or charges by employee. You could be watching your benefit costs or staying on top of worker’s compensation insurance. Whatever your issue of the day, week, or month, having full access to your payroll details via an in-house solution can make the difference between being in control of your labor costs and having a bottom line that is out of control. While available with an out-sourced service provider, additional information typically involves additional charges and more hassle.

An in-house payroll solution can help eliminate the hassle of managing your labor costs.

Stay up to speed on all our Outsourcing Payroll posts here: “Outsourcing Payroll

Download the full whitepaper here to start learning about managing payroll in your global organization!

Outsourcing Payroll Part 2 – The (real) Cost of Doing Payroll

December 14th, 2010 No comments


Now that we’ve reviewed the various payroll management solutions, let’s review each step of the payroll cycle to identify the challenges, how they’re addressed by in-house and outsourced solutions, and the “pay-per-view” costs that could be incurred. We’ll first touch on hiring, paying and funding.



The payroll cycle begins when a new employee comes on board. Once the offer letter is signed and the employee is hired, there are a myriad of forms to fill out, elections to make, and data to enter. The hassles of adding an employee to a system are generally shared by the new employee and the Human Resource (HR) staff. On the first day on the job, the employee must fill out forms indicating his preferences regarding both taxation and benefits.

The HR person must set up a new record, review documentation, get approvals, and complete more forms. Finally, all of this information has to get into the payroll system. Whether that system resides inside the company or with a service provider, the same amount of employee effort is required. Fortunately, both outsourced and in-house solutions can be set up to allow an employee to enter much of his contact information via self-service access, so whether the system is online or on-premise, handled in-house or by an outsourced service provider, the time needed to enter basic employee information is roughly the same.


Capturing, recording, and reviewing time for hourly employees can be a lengthy, error-filled process. Fortunately, there are a number of automated time keeping and time-card systems that can be integrated with either on-premise or outsourced payroll applications. The more complex your work environment and the more detailed your tracking requirements, the greater the need to integrate your time-keeping and payroll systems. With proper integration tools, both outsourced and on-premise applications can help reduce the burden of getting your hourly employees paid correctly.

Paying salaried employees is usually less time-consuming than paying hourly workers. Salaried employees generally have fewer changes to their pay, although they make more frequent changes to their withholding and benefit elections. Salaried payroll should be exception-based so that entries are only required for paid time off, special situations or commission/expense reimbursements. In addition, most comprehensive payroll solutions allow you to enter changes that don’t take effect until some future date. Look for an effective date feature in any solution you are considering, whether in-house or outsourced. When it comes to piece-rate workers, you will need to capture and record per piece data and enter it in your payroll system. You might pull the data via an automated feed or re-key it in your payroll system. Either way, you need to know if your payroll system is equipped to manage this form of payment, and if so, what additional charges are involved for integration.

Regardless of payment method, payroll processing requires the time and attention of an HR or Payroll employee. While minor adjustments to benefits or elections can be entered by an employee via a self-service solution, changes to hours worked, rates and salaries, or piece rates have to be managed by authorized staff members. Once captured, the changes must then be communicated to the payroll system. Only then is the payroll solution or service provider able to process payroll, generate checks, and capture transaction details. Both outsourced and in-house solutions require equal amounts of time and effort to ensure that employees are paid the correct wages each pay period.


When it comes to funding payroll, no solution will remove the biggest hassle –coming up with the money. But beyond that, both in house and outsourced solutions can help you determine how much to fund and reduce the burden of getting the correct amounts to the proper authorities. The more options you offer for employee benefits, garnishments, bank account types and the like, the more complex the funding process will be. When you use an outsourced payroll provider, however, these additional options can result in additional charges.

The type of payroll option you choose will have a direct impact on your cash flow. For most outsourced solutions, you are required to calculate and fund the full gross payroll in advance of the pay date. For in-house solutions, you can generally transfer funds for the net pay amount on the pay date and then make additional transfers to cover tax and benefit payments when due. Outsourced solutions generally involve a single funds transfer while in-house solutions support multiple transfers of funds, but only when payments are due.

Stay up to speed on all our Outsourcing Payroll posts here: “Outsourcing Payroll

Download the full whitepaper here to start learning about managing payroll in your global organization!

Outsourcing Payroll Part 1 – Two Ends of the Spectrum…and Lots In Between

December 8th, 2010 No comments

Outsourcing can be a good solution, but the decision to outsource is hardly cut and dried. Before you decide on a payroll management solution for your company, it’s important to take a moment to learn about your choices and the advantages and disadvantages of each option. In this next series of blog posts, we’ll compare in-house payroll solutions with outsourced solutions to help you make an informed decision.

There are two main ways to address your payroll needs: manage the process yourself or outsource payroll management to a service provider. These options are at opposite ends of the payroll management spectrum. At one end, there is potentially lower staff and technology involvement, while at the opposite end there is both more staff time and more direct software use. The ideal solution usually lies somewhere in between.

With a completely outsourced solution, you might capture all payroll information on printed forms and transmit it to your payroll provider via fax. Your company would have no direct access to the underlying application or calculations and would receive finished paychecks. The outsourced provider would manage data entry, calculations, payroll check processing and all other steps.

With a traditional in-house payroll management solution, on the other hand, you might have a desktop system that is accessed by members of your payroll department. You would capture all employee information on paper forms before entering them in your system. Your in-house payroll team would manage the entire process, from data entry and calculations to funding and remittance.

Most payroll management solutions fall somewhere in the middle of this continuum. The range of solutions has expanded thanks to greater sophistication, and a new feature called “employee self-service.” This feature gives employees direct access to a subset of their data – generally contact information, beneficiary designations, and other basic information. As changes are needed, rather than filling out a form that goes to HR, employees can directly access the system to update their own information. Regardless of the solution, this feature saves everyone time and effort by putting appropriate tasks in the hands of employees.

Stay up to speed on all our Outsourcing Payroll posts here: “Outsourcing Payroll

Download the full whitepaper here to start learning about managing payroll in your global organization!

Introduction to Outsourcing Payroll

December 7th, 2010 1 comment

Aided by the success of Timothy Ferriss’s book, The 4-Hour Workweek, and fueled by limited internal resources and an abundance of service providers, we have become a nation of outsourcers. It’s not hard to understand the attraction. Who wouldn’t love to hand off their least favorite chore to someone else? But when it comes to payroll, we might be kidding ourselves about both the benefits and the true costs of outsourcing. (Draw your own conclusions about that 4-hour workweek.)

The promise of payroll outsourcing is that the payroll service provider will assume all of the hassle of paying employees, leaving employers free to pursue more value-added activities. This arrangement sounds like a no-brainer. In cases where the burden comes from the sheer number of payroll checks or the number of taxing authorities expecting payment, an employer might actually succeed in shifting a portion of their pain to a service provider. But in many other cases, companies who outsource end up trading one set of burdens and irritations for another. These employers encounter inflexible reporting, limited options and hidden charges, and don’t succeed in substantially reducing the demands on their staff. And what’s worse for today’s businesses, they end up having limited insight into their labor costs – which are an increasingly important driver of overall profitability.

Contracting with a payroll service provider is like subscribing to cable. As employers, we’re no different from the excited boxing fan who signs up for the premium sporting channel with its 24/7 access to all the best events. Imagine our surprise, on the evening of the big bout, when we discover that the big event is “pay per view” – requiring payment of an additional charge on top of the monthly fee. There’s a reason no one loves their cable company – but you needn’t let your payroll service provider hit you with a left hook in the form of unexpected charges.

Stay up to speed with all the posts in our latest blog series, Outsourcing Payroll, starting tomorrow. We will also make the full Whitepaper available to download!