Alight research suggested that organizations are slowly waking up to investments in next-gen payroll innovations.
Last year was the first year that cloud investments exceeded that of on-premise payroll. While four in 10 movers to cloud payroll systems still used on-premise processes. This hybrid approach was largely stated to be part of a phased migration or replacing end-of-life technologies.
A clear return on investment in payroll technology can be calculated, making it relatively easy to make a business case for payroll process transformation. Immediately it can encourage self-service, improve compliance and cost less to run than legacy systems.
Pay was the core reason why 30% of people left employers last year. The option to choose when and how one is paid will differentiate employers, especially those with a lower-paid workforce.
The more pay, rewards and benefits that are offered, the more attractive an employer becomes. Options such as earned wage access can easily be self-managed, via a mobile app.
In terms of automation, payroll data analytics was the most significant use with a 21% increase. But adoption of artificial intelligence (AI), from 6.3% to 12.5% is still low considering the value this can bring to the overall business. It is mostly used to encourage self-service, which brings major benefits to employees and employers, but it has far greater potential.
Robotic process automation (RPA), beyond what is standard in cloud payroll HCMs, increased from 17% from 9.2%. Those who invested reported greater speed, accuracy and efficiency of payroll processing, according to the Alight Global Payroll Complexity Index.