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Empowering Employees with Self-Service Payroll

Nicole Hennessy
Nicole Hennessy
May 23, 2024 3 mins

Just decades ago, vacationers would reach out to a travel agent when they booked a trip, and grocery shoppers would bring all of their items to a cashier, but today, we often book our trips online and use self-service checkout kiosks at the store.

The trend towards on-demand self-service has spread practically everywhere, in large part thanks to the ubiquity of software and the internet. People expect to use apps, tools, online portals and automated systems for everything from paying taxes to ordering pizza.

In line with this trend, many companies are now shifting to a self-service payroll model, in which employees manage their own payslip-related information online. This brings with it advantages in terms of efficiency and employee empowerment but can make some employees feel as if they themselves have too much administrative burden.

Use Cases for Employee Self-Service Software

An employee self-service portal for payroll might help with several job-related functions.

In the most basic sense, self-service resources make it easier for employees to update their own information. Instead of contacting someone in payroll or human resources to make an update, such as updating banking information, employees can do so directly themselves.

desktop screen offering employee self service

Employee self-service programs also make it easier for managers and workers to download and distribute tax forms. Many vendors offer all W2s, 1099s and other documents ready as a pdf and organized by year.

Finally, employees can use self-service portals to view and download pay statements. This helps cut down on paper waste and is useful if they need to print out a hard copy.

Benefits of Self-Service Software for Payroll

At its core, the idea of using self-service portals for payroll shifts some administrative responsibility from payroll workers to all employees in a company. Done right, this system can have several advantages.

Self-service payroll can boost efficiency and productivity by freeing payroll workers up to do other, more high-value-added tasks. By spending less time focused on each individual employee's information, they can spend more time analyzing payroll data and making quality decisions.

This can ultimately lead to cost savings, especially if less labor is needed overall to handle payroll. A payroll worker will have to spend less time devoted to minor tasks like phone number changes, which employees can handle themselves through the self-service platform.

woman with clipboard with a list of benefits

Self-service payroll increases flexibility and accessibility by making certain payroll tasks open to action from employees anywhere, such as managing data and accessing pay information. This is an advantage over ossified systems that require complex protocols to modify or access information.

By shifting more responsibility for payroll information to employees themselves, self-service payroll can increase the accuracy of pay information. Employees are, after all, interested in and aware of the hours they worked and are unlikely to accidentally miss some of their time.

Using self-service portals is safer and more secure than most alternatives, such as email. This is especially important for sending tax information, bank numbers and other sensitive data.

Workers who take ownership of their own payroll-related data may feel greater empowerment and control over their jobs. It is important to find a balance, however. As we share below, too much empowerment can cause problems if done incorrectly.

Challenges and Considerations for Self-Service Payroll

Self-service systems always come with some risks. By booking flights with travel websites instead of consulting travel agents, we take on more bureaucratic responsibility for ourselves. When stores introduce self-service checkout counters, they make theft easier.

When it comes to payroll, self-service options also come with challenges. Companies should strive to take a cautious and balanced approach to minimize their risk.

man sitting behind desk facing challenges with self-service payroll

Although self-service payroll can make workers feel empowered, they may also become resentful at what they perceive is additional responsibilities outside of their core job roles. A salesperson may believe it is their job to make sales, for example, not to punch in payroll account information.

For this reason, it is beneficial to give employees flexibility about their level of engagement with self-service payroll. By portraying it as an optional and helpful service, rather than an obligatory burden, it will be more easily adopted. Emphasize the aspects of self-service payroll that really do make worker's lives easier. Instead of having to call payroll to modify address information, it would be simpler for them to simply edit a text field in an app.

One View Brings Employee Self-Service to Payroll

UKG One View is a comprehensive payroll. It provides a unified, real-time view of all information related to payroll in over 160 countries. One View has offered secure employee payroll self-service for years.

Our application is a proven solution for managing payroll-related information. Instead of wasting time waiting for employer intervention, users can simply update their own information directly. Instead of inaccurate or insecure data entry, users can check and update their personal information through a secure portal.

Do you need better payroll services for your team? Contact us today.