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Outsourced payroll processing for the hospitality sector in Ireland

Sep 16, 2023 | Payroll

Employing people in the Irish hospitality industry is a complex undertaking. When it comes to paying those employees, dealing with factors such as permanent and temporary contracts, multiple payroll cycles, high turnover rates, and managing tips and gratuities can turn payroll processing into a minefield. This complexity also leaves hospitality businesses at risk of payroll errors, salary overpayments/underpayments, and non-compliance.

How to run payroll in hospitality/leisure companies

Hospitality and leisure businesses bend over backwards to deliver a fantastic service to their clients. This often means round-the-clock staffing, with careful scheduling needed to correctly cover weekends, nights, public holidays, and peak periods. This, of course, only adds more layers to the payroll challenge.

A hospitality or leisure business will need to consider the following elements to run an effective payroll:

  • Seasonal employment: Many hospitality establishments, particularly those in tourist areas, rely heavily on seasonal staff. Managing the hiring, training, and payroll for these temporary employees is a recurring challenge.
  • Variable work hours: Hospitality means irregular hours due to shifts, overtime, and split shifts. Calculating accurate pay for variable hours and overtime requires careful attention to detail.
  • Tips and gratuities: The distribution of tips and gratuities among staff members must be done fairly and in compliance with Revenue guidelines. Keeping precise records of cash tips and reporting them accurately for tax purposes is essential.
  • Minimum wage compliance: Ensuring compliance with current minimum wage rates while accounting for different employee categories also adds to payroll complexity.
  • Pension auto-enrolment: Auto-enrolment for workplace pensions is coming in 2024 and will add an additional layer of responsibility to the payroll process.
  • Payroll tax deductions: You will need to accurately withhold and remit payroll taxes to Revenue, including Pay As You Earn (PAYE), Pay-Related Social Insurance (PRSI), and Universal Social Charge (USC).
  • Annual leave and public holidays: Managing annual leave entitlements, public holiday pay, and leave accruals in compliance with the Organisation of Working Time Act 1997 is important as there are specific rules that apply to part-time and full-time staff.
  • Law and regulation: Staying informed of and adhering to employment law updates ensures that payroll practices remain in line with all legal and regulatory requirements.
  • Employee benefits: Offering employee benefits such as health insurance and pension contributions will affect payroll calculations.

If these are the kinds of factors you are dealing with when paying your staff, you have a complex payroll. The types of businesses we see that fall into this group include restaurants, hotels, canteens, hostels, clubs, cafes, bars, theatres, spas, gyms, golf courses, and conference centres.

The benefits of working with a hospitality payroll service in Ireland

Specialist hospitality payroll software can go part of the way in dealing with payroll processing tasks, but the surest way to de-risk your business and have fast, accurate payroll for all your staff is to outsource the entire process to an expert payroll service with deep experience of the hospitality and leisure industries.

Having a professional outsourced payroll provider in place will help you avoid potential payroll problems and easily follow payroll best practice. They do all the heavy lifting, from the moment a member of staff starts with you to when they leave, with meticulous record-keeping and all your compliance requirements met on time, every time.

Outsourcing to a hospitality payroll processing service will ensure continuity all year round, regardless of internal or external forces. It leaves your finance and HR teams free to focus on their business goals, from recruiting and retaining staff to managing cash flow and profitability.

In addition, outsourcing your payroll processing means you won’t have to shoulder the cost of specialist payroll software, payroll training, and resource cover for payroll specialists. In fact, you can leave behind all the administrative burden associated with payroll, such as recordkeeping, reporting, data management, security, and support.

What should a payroll processing service for hospitality include?

Whether you have one or one thousand employees, an outsourced payroll service should provide end-to-end managed support that leaves you in control while ensuring accurate and timely payroll processing.

In addition, the experienced team should keep you updated about all new employment and related legislation, ensuring your company is compliant with legal or regulatory changes and providing answers to any payroll-related questions your teams have.

Some features of a great hospitality payroll service include:

  • Managing new employees and leavers quickly and efficiently.
  • Providing compliant payslips to employees and dealing with their payroll enquiries.
  • Liaising with Revenue and facilitating queries, assessments, and education.
  • Customised reporting to finance teams – taking into account different departments, cost centres, and departmental reporting.
  • Retrieving data directly from time and attendance systems – linking to their internal systems through software integrations rather than forcing you to change your systems.
  • Processing amendments to payroll such as un-clocked hours, salary adjustments, holiday leave, lieu time, and tips and gratuities.
  • Advising on tax matters such as redundancy or termination payments.
  • Dealing with statutory reporting (where required) such as gender pay gap reporting or CSO reporting.
  • Advising on tax-efficient strategies for larger workforces.
  • Guaranteed continuity, every week of the year.

Does a hospitality payroll service save money?

In almost any scenario, it is more cost-effective to outsource your payroll processing. Because of all the variables we looked at above, this is particularly true for outsourcing hospitality industry and leisure industry payrolls.

A payroll bureau provides a “fully managed” service, which means you don’t have to worry about the day-to-day management of the payroll experts assigned to your business. The payroll company takes over responsibility for all the technical and compliance aspects of your payroll, allowing you to focus on actions that drive your business instead of administrative tasks.

As well as being cheaper than managing payroll in-house, you will get long-term added value benefits from working with payroll experts. They are highly trained, have up-to-the-minute knowledge of tax and regulatory issues, can benchmark your payroll practices, and will proactively incorporate best practice and process enhancement.

Work with Clear Group – hospitality payroll processing experts

If you’re looking for a Dublin-based payroll bureau to manage your hospitality or leisure business payroll, we can help. Our service is highly flexible and scalable, allowing your payroll to become a variable rather than a fixed cost. We offer a secure, confidential, and compliant service that saves you time and money. We also work with time and attendance and rostering systems to ensure seamless payroll processing. To understand more about how we help hospitality organisations like yours, get in touch today.