SEPA Payroll – Deadline: October 2013…

Sorry for the shock headline, but with reference to salary payments consider this – alot of companies pay their employee salaries at the end of the month. In terms of timelines payroll is a key process that happens once a month, at the end of the month, and cannot go wrong. You have the potential to stop your business functioning because your employees havent been paid. Combine this with the legally binding SEPA deadline of 1st February, 2014, and you start to see that you really need to plan and consider when you want to ‘go live’ / implement your production SEPA payroll process.

January, 2014…

You dont want to be running your first payroll SEPA credit transfer process at the end of January 2014,  in readiness for February, 2014. What if is doesnt work!?! Ok, so you maybe able to revert back to the existing / legacy process in January 2014, and you’ll have another month to fix the problem. Consequently you’ll be running your first SEPA payroll process in February 2014. If i was your HR Manager, in that position i’d be ‘uncomfortable’. Ok, so whats the alternative…?

December, 2013…

Do you really want to be going live with your first payroll SEPA credit transfer process in December 2013? Its getting close to Christmas, people are thinking about their holidays and  New Year celebrations, and there is generally less availability of resources both internal (within your company) and externally (software vendor, bank, other resources). At this point, its do-able, but there are risks associated with it. Some companies also introduce a freeze over the Christmas / New Year period – you’ll have to consider that, if its applicable.

November, 2013…

Working backwards from the ultimate deadline, (just in case you didnt know yet – 1st February, 2014) – November 2013 is the second ‘best’ deadline to set yourself. Assuming everything works well, it gives you 2 months (December 2013, and January 2014) to continue to run, verify and feel comfortable with your SEPA compliant payroll process. If there is a problem however, you have 2 months to fix it. Those months being December 2013 and January 2014, which arent ideal months to go live with payroll given the points mentioned above. But worse case, it does still give you time to address the encountered problems.

October, 2013…

Which leads us to October 2013. In an ideal world (!) you should plan to have your last SEPA compliant payroll implementation going live in October 2013. If all works well, you’ll have 3 months of processing before the regulatory SEPA deadline. If you do hit a problem, you can revert back to the existing / legacy process and still have enough time to fix it in a cool and calm manner. Your HR Manager will love you forever!

Easy, eh? ….

The only problem is that between now (March 2013) and October 2013, there are only 7 months. If you’re running payroll processing using a variety of systems, with many business units, in multiple countries thats potentially alot of payroll to bank processes that need to become SEPA compliant.

Its not an ideal world, and therein lies the challenge – good luck…!

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