Payroll administration might be the perfect career for you if you like numbers and are enthusiastic about performing administrative duties. Also, choosing the right career may not always be the easiest thing to do, especially in today’s digitalized world. Essentially, passion is not always enough. You need to have the right skills for the career you want to pursue.
If you are interested in becoming a payroll administrator, this article has all you need to get started today. Here we go!
What is payroll administration?
Payroll administration is an administrative task or duty that organizes employee compensation. It includes taking records of hours worked, compensation rates, and managing payment systems.
Payroll administration includes all responsibilities associated with paying an organization’s personnel.
It usually entails keeping track of hours worked and ensuring that employees are paid correctly.
It also entails calculating taxes and ensuring that they are withheld and handled correctly.
A variety of different deductions may be estimated, withheld, and processed as part of this procedure, depending on the firm in issue.
Additionally, contractor payment processing may come under the same umbrella.
The precise activities involved in payroll administration vary depending on the demands of each individual firm or organization.
Some businesses, for example, pay employees commissions in addition to salary.
Commissions are included in employee remuneration in these firms.
Who is a payroll administrator?
The personnel responsible for payroll administration in any company is called the payroll administrator. Payroll administrators collect and review work data relating to employees, work hours, and payment or compensation plans. Essentially, without them, there is difficulty with payment.
Additionally, they work regular or standard hours in the office just like everyone else unless they decide to function on a contract as independent contractors.
While big businesses and corporations can afford to hire a full-time payroll administrator, it is pretty different for small businesses. Essentially, the small business owner has to double as CEO and payroll administrator for his company.
Expected duties in payroll administration
Payroll administrators play an important role in any company’s HR department since they are responsible for ensuring that all employees are paid appropriately and on time.
These individuals are in charge of all procedures related to the company’s payroll systems. A payroll administrator is responsible for a wide range of administrative tasks, such as calculating hours and taxes and administering wages, as well as human resources tasks such as data collection and tabulating employee information.
According to a 2023 research, payroll professionals are in high demand all across the world. It is a sought-after position that necessitates computational and mathematical abilities, as well as communication and leadership abilities.
The majority of payroll specialists have accounting or finance degrees, as well as payroll administration industry certifications that indicate their competence to operate with payroll software. They must also be well-versed in all regional taxes laws, compliance needs, and corporate rules.
Most payroll administrators are required to collaborate with the company’s HR and accounting departments. Their working hours and responsibilities may differ depending on their job and the size of the firm for which they work.
Payroll Administrator Responsibilities
Duties at a smaller firm may be as simple as making checks and updating information on a spreadsheet. Payroll professionals are required by firms with thousands of employees to manage taxation, accounting, and payroll software. Many businesses also outsource their payroll responsibilities to third parties.
Before pursuing a career in payroll administration, it is essential to know what is expected of you as a payroll administrator. Whether you want to work for a large firm or as an independent contractor, managing several paychecks for many startups, your duties remain the same.
Here is a brief list containing your duties:
- Keeping tabs on employee hours at work.
- Calculating workers’ pay (wages and salaries).
- Disbursing employee compensation through various compensation means (cash, cheque, e-transfer/deposit).
- Preparing pay stubs and generating employee w-2 forms.
- Keeping, maintaining, and updating employee data.
- Issuing tax forms and assisting workers with appropriately and accurately completing the forms.
- Calculating tax, insurance, and other withholdings from paychecks
- Calculating raises, payment adjustments, and overtime payments.
- Collaborating with human resources to Resolve hiring, payment, and payroll inconsistencies.
As you can see, virtually all duties in payroll administration involve lots of calculation and documentation. As a result, you need to ensure that a job in payroll administration is something you are interested in before seeking employment opportunities.
Requisite payroll administration skills
Below are a few necessary skills to possess if you want to perform well as a payroll administrator:
- Impeccable verbal and written communication skills.
- Deep knowledge of human resources and labor rules.
- Payroll software know-how.
- Perfect organizational skills.
- An analytical mind for numbers with eyes for details.
- Time management skills.
- Perfect interpersonal skills and public relations.
The above skills are not all there is to become a successful payroll administrator. Essentially, payroll is a highly dynamic field. As a result, while on the job, you should be sensitive to pick up other relevant skills as you go.
How to become a payroll administrator today
The best way to become a payroll administrator is to look at the resumes of current payroll administrators. The following chart summarizes the most common education, experiences, and abilities required to work as a payroll administrator:
- A bachelor’s degree in a related discipline, such as business or accounting, is often required for a payroll administrator.
- Payroll administrator jobs often demand 2-4 years of expertise in similar disciplines.
- Standard work titles before becoming a payroll administrator include office manager, administrative assistant, and payroll expert.
- Hiring managers look for soft skills such as communication, numeracy, and organizational abilities in payroll administrators.
- A payroll administrator typically requires 6-12 months of on-the-job training.
- Obtaining a payroll administrator certification, such as the Certified Payroll Professional (CPP), can allow you to make more money.
Payroll administrators hold a bachelor’s degree in 51.4% of cases. Furthermore, 6.1% had a master’s degree before working as a payroll administrator. While most payroll administrators hold a bachelor’s degree, it is possible to get one with only a high school diploma. In reality, one in every six payroll administrators did not attend college.
If they go to college, payroll managers generally receive a degree in business or accounting. Human resource management and finance degrees are less often obtained by payroll administrators.
Become a Payroll Manager
With the advent and proliferation of startups and entrepreneurship, becoming a payroll administrator today is as easy as it is doable. Essentially, there are two ways you can achieve it.
The first step is to work as a payroll administrator in an already established company with regular office hours. The second way is to establish your own payroll business as an entrepreneur.
While most of this article has provided you with relevant information to make you a successful payroll administrator employee, this section will discuss payroll administration as an entrepreneur. Essentially, it entails starting an individual payroll business.
Starting your payroll business is achievable, mainly because technology makes things easier. However, if you want to provide payroll services through your own business, you will need to grow your client base. Also, you will need to have your payroll processing software like an online paystub generator, with a few workers having basic accounting and payroll knowledge. Additionally, you may need to get involved with advertising to attract more clients to your business.
Career prospects in payroll administration
Because payroll is a constantly evolving field of endeavor, there are many opportunities for career advancement along the way. As a result, there are prospects for those willing to change and advance towards current trends in the field.
In addition, thanks to advanced communications technology and cloud computing, several advanced positions continue to open up in payroll. For instance, entry-level payroll administrators have opportunities to take mock-up courses while on the job to advance their careers.
Furthermore, payroll administrators have increased opportunities to work remotely as independent contractors. Some people often establish and build their own payroll business as self-employed individuals. As a result, the options for career advancement in payroll are abundant.
Nowadays, becoming a payroll administrator requires more flexibility and resilience, especially with the introduction of technology in the workplace. So, essentially, you need to realize that payroll is a multi-faceted field of endeavor that is constantly evolving. As a result, whatever level you occupy on the job, it is crucial to always keep your eyes above for higher positions.
Do you require any degree for a payroll administration job?
Generally, most big corporations will require you to have a degree in any administrative or accounting field. Examples include business administration, finance, or accounting. Also, some employers will accept some industry-recognized qualifications like the Level 1 Certificate in Payroll, bookkeeping, etc. Alternatively, other employers might prefer to hire you after an advanced apprenticeship scheme.
What is the expected salary of a payroll administrator?
The annual salaries of payroll administrators vary depending on prevailing factors. Examples of such factors include but are not limited to the company’s size, geographical location, job qualification, duration/position on the job, experience, responsibilities, and duties. However, according to jobs, an average payroll administrator earns up to $22 per hour in the United States.
How do I get into payroll administration jobs with no experience?
Although big corporations require you to have some level of experience before hiring you, getting a job in payroll with no experience is possible. Essentially, you will have to demonstrate good mathematical, language, and customer service skills. You also need to prove that you have excellent public relations skills and can learn and grow on the job.