Time sheets and rosters
These are the source documents that every business needs to maintain at the beginning of the payroll process (after someone has been hired of course). These documents are evidence of your staff’s time spent at your business and this information is critical in the case of hospitality and retail type businesses because of the penalties and awards that come with working in these industries. Some companies maintain electronic sign in systems that require staff to swipe, scan or punch in their details and it encourages accurate and up-to-date timesheet information recording.
Payroll processing is critical not only to keep staff happy but to maintain legal compliance. Processing payroll uses information from the timesheets or roster and takes into consideration the employees award, employment status (fulltime, casual etc) and in some industries the level of risk of the work they do. In the case of full time and part time employees payroll processing also means managing liabilities like PAYG, sick pay, holiday pay and of course superannuation.
If you are manually recording staff work hours you must consider how these files are recorded, filed and then accessed when payroll processing occurs. Although it may seem easier to track workers hours manually it’s often better to spend a little extra and introduce a system in your business to collect time sheet information electronically for these reasons:
- It makes staff accountable for accurate record keeping
- It enables flexible storage that can be accessed remotely if needed
- Electronic data can be backed up offsite
- Saves on manual data entry by your bookkeeper
- Enables you to hire remote contractor bookkeepers
The complexities in payroll and the fact that a business holds taxes for the employee that need to be paid to the ATO, payroll tasks and subsequent liability reporting should be performed by a BAS agent if your business is contracting the payroll task to an independent contract bookkeeper.
Once an employee is paid the ATO requires employers to provide their employees with a payslip that shows the net and gross pay as well as information about other payments that have been withheld, tax withheld, super etc. It is also a good idea to run internal company reports so you are aware of the liabilities the business has to pay to the ATO – these funds should be set aside.
If you operate a service based business where you charge your staff out it also becomes important to understand time billing and job management to help you understand the total cost of providing services to your clients.
Annual Payment Summary
The final payroll report which you run at the end of every financial year is called the Payment Summary or often referred to as a “group certificate” and for many businesses it is a simple report which you can run from your accounting software but there are many different types of group certificate depending on where your workers come from, if they are leaving your company etc. Visit the ATO’s Payment Summary web page for the full details.
How can we help?
Whether you just need payroll services or have them combined as part of your weekly bookkeeping service we can help. Tell us about your business and we’ll provide you with a quote for your payroll solution.