Navigo Blog

Follow up on Australian payroll complexity

Written by Michael Specht

January 24, 2014

In October 2013 NGA Human Resources released their Payroll Complexity report looking at the 10 countries with the most complex payroll.

At the time I wrote that I was surprised Australia did not make the list.

Just before the end of 2013 I had a regular vendor briefing with NGA Human Resources. In addition to getting an update on their products and strategy, we discussed the Payroll Complexity Report.

Payroll Complexity

NGA Human Resources stated that while not in the top 10, Australia ranked 16 out of the 35 countries reviewed.  The key measurement criteria in the report was the complexity of processing payroll and the respondents were mainly payroll operators – the people using the systems.

This raises a question – was the perception of complexity due to a lack of system functionality to support the country specific payroll requirements?

If the system had greater functional coverage (think automation in part) would they have perceived the processing of payroll as less complex?

Three of the five key areas covered in the report can be enabled by technology: gross to net calculations, taxes, and benefits processing.

I propose that if payroll systems enabled/automated more of these areas then respondents may have viewed the processing of payroll as less complex.

While the overall complexity of the payroll legislative framework remains the same, the perceived complexity of payroll operations would have reduced.

What are your thoughts?


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