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4 Key Areas to Consider when Moving to a Global Unified Payroll Platform

Christine Kelly
Christine Kelly

Chief Operating Officer

Sep 2, 2020 2 mins

“Changes are inevitable and not always controllable. What can be controlled is how you manage, react to and work through the process.” — Kelly A. Morgan

Is your organization one of the many moving to a global unified payroll platform to combat today’s global payroll challenges? Change is inevitable, and while the benefits of such a transition are huge, there are several universal concerns that accompany such a move.

In this blog, I will take you through the top factors that influence and dramatically impact the outcome of switching payroll models. I will also provide some real-world examples from other companies who completed the transition and what they learned in the process.

What to examine before embarking on the transition to a global unified payroll platform:

#1 Your current payroll operations

Conduct a thorough analysis of how things stand within your organization now.

Current provider

  • Review current payroll provider capability and where they fall short
  • Determine the entire scope of services provided and how they are provided
  • Review your current contract
  • Know your contract end date

Payroll Data

  • Review your current payroll data and, more importantly, the quality and accuracy of your data
  • What outputs are you currently receiving each month?
  • Where are the outputs being stored/backed up?

Precision-170x170-1-150x150 Real-world tip

Do not underestimate the amount of time required to get input from executives on all sides. Prepare in advance and ensure you fully understand the details and complexities in each country. Ensure the local teams, including outgoing providers and any other project resources, are aware of the impending changes.

#2 Secure internal alignment & buy-in from payroll

Be sure to get everyone’s support for the project from the beginning.

Senior leadership

  • Build a business case around the need for change.
  • Make a comprehensive list of all the resources and investment required
  • Clearly show the ROI and value realization with the new model
  • Be prepared to invest senior resources in the initial period


Real-world tip

The failure to engage the local teams in the agreement caused issues and delays for one organization as they attempted to unify and move several payrolls into one cohesive system.

#3 Do not underestimate the people power needed for the project

Anyone who has completed such a momentous undertaking will agree: this project requires a team effort; this is not a one-person job.

  • Be sure to identify the talent required to support the project and make sure these people have the right skills, expertise and are empowered to make decisions.
  • Ask your payroll provider for guidance on the leading project roles required – they should be able to steer you in the right direction.


Real-world tip

Have your own dedicated technical resource person/team. Their ability to partner with the vendors’ technical teams to map, test and execute results will produce a better outcome for all involved.

#4 Conduct extensive research on potential payroll platform providers 

Not all global payroll vendors are the same. Before selecting a possible partner, look for:

  • A secure, cloud-based, unified platform that supports your global payroll business needs
  • Centralized and consolidated real-time data analytics and reporting that can impact business decisions
  • Deep integration capability with your HR/Finance systems for seamless flow of data
  • Pragmatic implementation approach that takes your business make -up into account
  • Extensive internal and external knowledge networks to support global success and local compliance.
  • A focus on your success post-implementation
  • The ability to demonstrate experience in the global payroll space

By evaluating your current payroll operations, internal alignment, project resourcing, and the current market, you’ll get a clearer picture of where you are right now and where you need to go. This will greatly support your decision-making process when it comes to selecting your payroll provider. Plus, having a vision for the future and sharing it within the organization will spark excitement around your next payroll project, resulting in better alignment of goals amongst teams and increased support.

Have any other questions? We are always happy to help. Download 5 Key Steps for Payroll Set Up Success and start your journey towards a global unified payroll platform today.