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Many mistakes can be forgiven in the business world, but the impact of a payroll mistake can be magnified way beyond its initial cause. And if it is not dealt with swiftly — or occurs more than once — a single mistake can quickly balloon into a major problem. 

If you’re noticing payroll mistakes showing up in your business, you need to urgently think about outsourcing this business-critical task to the experts. 

There is no ‘right time’ to outsource payroll, but nothing is more important than making sure payroll runs smoothly. After all, staff tend to look elsewhere for new jobs if their pay comes in late or they are underpaid once too often. 

The impact of payroll mistakes

Saying sorry won’t cut it when your staff have mortgages to pay and children to feed. Missed payments also incur interest and can have devastating reputational and credit consequences for employees. 

Listening to staff complaints about payroll is a crucial part of any manager or business owner’s job, especially when the company is going through rapid growth. It is wise to treat all such complaints as orange flags that signal far more worrying red flags in how the company operates. 

The larger an organisation grows, the easier it is for things like payroll to fall through the cracks as everything gets more complex. And if your staff are aware of those cracks, then it’s likely there will also be hidden mistakes occurring in compliance and reporting. Neither of these things are desirable. 

Reducing payroll resource risks

It’s important to know that payroll problems may not be strictly due to fast growth or mistakes. Sometimes the pain might be as simple as a stalwart payroll manager, who has been with the company since day one, choosing to find a job elsewhere. That’s exciting for them, but the downside is that they take their knowledge about your payroll systems with them. 

Putting aside some budget to train staff is just good business. But if a handful of payroll managers come and go over the stretch of a few years, each requiring costly upskilling and training, all that wasted overhead can be a serious drain on the health of a company. 

Outsourcing to a competent payroll provider will solve most of these problems. Payroll providers always have plenty of experts ready to answer any legal or compliance questions and they will be right by your side as your company scales, introducing services at the right time and standardising your payroll processes. 

If it is time to outsource your payroll, then it’s important to hand it over all at once. Payroll is a sensitive topic, and it is natural to want to keep a bit of control over the task. But a ‘hybrid’ model, in which some parts are kept in-house while others are outsourced, is a short-term solution and an accident waiting to happen.  



For over thirty years, Affinity has been a trusted partner for mid-market and enterprise businesses in Australia and New Zealand, empowering them to transform their payroll operations. With a focus on turning payroll from a cost into an asset, we have established ourselves as industry leaders in delivering innovative cloud-based payroll software and exceptional payroll services.