May 2021

13

How to Manage the Annual Leave Backlog as the Country Reopens

Employers are well used to staff wanting to take holidays at the same time. It is inevitable that certain times of year like Easter or Christmas will be more popular than others. As we remain in lockdown, many employees will have saved their time off for when more restrictions are lifted, and they can enjoy their free time as much as possible.

With Hotels, B&Bs, guesthouses, self-catering accommodation and outdoor hospitality set to reopen in early June, we can expect a scramble in workplaces for employees to get their holiday requests in. While it might not be possible to please everyone and give them time off on their preferred dates, it is important that you deal with annual leave requests in a way which is transparent and fair. If they wish to, employers are permitted to specify when an employee should take their holidays, provided they give the required notice. However, this can leave some employees feeling hard done by and annoyed that they do not have control over the dates that they take off, especially if they are forced to take time off during COVID-19 restrictions. So, what is the best option for all parties involved?

Annual Leave Requests
 
 

An employee app that manages staff holidays

BrightPay Connect, an optional add-on to BrightPay’s payroll software, is the simplest way to manage your staff's annual leave – headache free. BrightPay Connect streamlines leave requests and leave approval. This is how it works:

1. The employee requests leave from the calendar in their BrightPay Connect mobile app or from their PC or tablet. This means employees can request leave anytime, anywhere.

2. The employer (or the person who has been assigned to oversee the management of that employee’s annual leave) is notified of the request on the dashboard of their own BrightPay Connect account.

3. The employer/manager can then either approve or deny the request at the click of a button.

4. The employee will receive a notification on their device informing them of whether their request has been approved or denied.

The most popular policy of granting annual leave is on a first come, first served basis. While this policy is the most fair; depending on the system in place, it can still be difficult to keep track of which employee requested the leave first. With BrightPay Connect, you don’t have that problem as you will be able to see the order in which requests come in. Employees also have the ability to request half days or request to cancel leave which has already been granted.

In the employer’s dashboard, from the calendar tab, the employer or manager can view a real time, company-wide calendar. At a glance, employers see which employees are on leave and the type of leave. This is especially handy nowadays when staff may be working from home and it is hard to keep track of who is off and who is not. Cloud integration means any approved leave requests will flow directly back to your BrightPay payroll software on your PC.

Using BrightPay Connect to manage employee’s leave means less conflict in the workplace and less stress all round. Book a demo today to find out the many other ways BrightPay Connect can improve employer/employee relationships.

Why not register now for our upcoming free webinar where we will discuss the EWSS scheme and highlight important tips to remember as you return to the workplace.

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Posted byElaine CarrollinAnnual LeaveCoronavirus


May 2021

4

BrightPay Customer Update: May 2021

Welcome to BrightPay's May update. Our most important news this month include:


The TWSS reconciliation deadline is fast approaching

According to Revenue, just 28% of employers had accepted their TWSS reconciliation as of last week. By 30th June 2021, employers must have reviewed their reconciliation information, made any necessary corrections and accepted the reconciliation. If no action is taken by 30th June, Revenue will take it that you agree to the reconciliation balance. Any amount owing will be due and payable.  


Free webinar: Leaving Lockdown: The End of the Wage Subsidy Scheme?  

This webinar will discuss the current state of the Employment Wage Subsidy Scheme (EWSS). Will it be extended beyond its 30th June end date? Or perhaps a new scheme will be introduced to take its place. Plus, our payroll & HR experts will discuss the dos and don’ts of returning to the workplace.


How to avoid an annual leave backlog  

As restrictions are lifted in Ireland, managers will likely be in a situation where many employees will ask to take leave at the same time. It is important that you deal with requests in a way that is transparent and fair. BrightPay Connect will show you who requested leave and when, and you can check the calendar prior to approving leave to make sure you have adequate staffing levels. 


BrightPay celebrates Earth Day 2021 

At BrightPay we are committed to a cleaner, greener future for all. We recently announced our very ambitious sustainability campaign to become net zero by 2023. Our Green Team celebrated Earth Day 2021 with a number of activities planned throughout the whole week.

Find out more Sustainability newsletter
 

Posted byHolly McHughinCustomer Update


Apr 2021

28

How we celebrated Earth Day 2021

As you may know, we recently announced our very ambitious sustainability campaign to become net zero by 2023. To achieve this, our new offices are purpose built to be energy efficient, affording us the opportunity to record and monitor our carbon emissions. Following an initial period of review, we will look to offset our emissions with the ultimate goal of becoming truly carbon neutral.

To help raise awareness amongst our employees, we have established the BrightPay Green Team which is made up of 12 team members, across multiple departments. The Green Team have been working on coming up with creative ways to make the company's operations more environmentally friendly. They also aim to encourage change amongst colleagues on an individual level, at home, at work and in the community.

In our first campaign to raise awareness, the Green Team celebrated Earth Day 2021 (April, 22nd) with a number of activities planned throughout the week.

As we continue to work remotely, we encouraged everyone to get involved and share photos of their activities online.

The BrightPay Team getting involved in Earth Day celebrations.

 

We started off our ‘Earth Week’ with ‘Meat Free Monday’. The production of meat and dairy products account for around 14.5% of global greenhouse gas emissions each year and so we encouraged employees to eat vegetarian or vegan meals for the day. On Tuesday we encouraged employees to take a walk in their local area. On Wednesday we asked employees to unplug devices, cut down on emails and have a ‘digital clean-up' to save C02 emissions. Thursday, April 22nd, was Earth Day and to celebrate we had a live online talk from Dr Emma Reeves, Senior Ecologist at the Forest, Environmental Research & Services (FERS) Ltd who discussed reducing our waste, the benefits of living a more eco-friendly lifestyle and the small changes we as individuals can make to help the planet. Friday was ‘Fresh Friday’ where we encouraged employees to go litter picking in their local areas.

Earth week was a success and we accomplished what we set out to do, which was to raise environmental awareness amongst our colleagues and encourage involvement in the company's sustainability efforts.

We will continue our dedication to creating a greener future and reaching our goal of net zero by 2023. Subscribe to BrightPay’s sustainability newsletter to follow our journey.

 

 

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Apr 2021

19

BrightPay marks Earth Day 2021

The first Earth Day launched fifty-one years ago in response to an emerging environmental consciousness, catalysed by a number of environmental disasters in the ‘60s. Although the stakes only grow as the years go by, we can appreciate that there has been a profound cultural shift since it began.

At BrightPay we are committed to a cleaner, greener future for all. This commitment will see us developing our business towards ecological sustainability at both a company and an individual level. We recently announced our very ambitious sustainability campaign to become net zero by 2023. To achieve this, our new offices (opening soon!) are purpose built to be energy efficient, affording us the opportunity to record and monitor our carbon emissions. In addition to this, we have established the Green Team, an internal company initiative, to educate, promote and inspire sustainability among our colleagues and our loyal customers.

The Green Team members are brimming with ideas to identify and support the implementation of solutions to help BrightPay operate in a more environmentally sustainable way. Our plans, including those for Earth Day, are grounded in the belief that small actions at the individual level can build to create a larger change. We will leverage our individual power to influence, as an employee, a consumer, a voter, and as a member of our community.

In our first campaign to raise awareness, the Green Team will be celebrating Earth Day 2021 with a number of activities planned throughout the week. Take a look below at what we have planned. On Earth Day, we will be inviting Dr Emma Reeves, Senior Ecologist at the Forest, Environmental Research & Services (FERS) Ltd to discuss climate change, pollution, and what we as individuals can do to help.

Our dedication to the environment won’t stop at the end of the week. Subscribe to BrightPay’s sustainability newsletter to follow our journey.


Apr 2021

1

BrightPay Customer Update: April 2021

Welcome to BrightPay's April update. Our most important news this month include:


TWSS Reconciliation – What you Need to Know

Most employers who availed of the TWSS should now have received a ROS inbox message in relation to the reconciliation process. Find out what you need to know about the TWSS reconciliation process and ensure you meet the June 30th 2021 deadline to accept the reconciliation. 


The Vaccine & The New World of Work  

As vaccines roll out and employee’s return to the workplace employers are looking to form their vaccine policy. Join our employment law experts for a free webinar on April 28th where we will provide you with all the information you need to know about managing COVID-19 in the workplace including the vaccine policy.  


Good Friday – Bank Holiday or Public Holiday? 

As Easter approaches, we remind employers that Good Friday is NOT a statutory public holiday. Easter Monday, on the other hand, is a Public Holiday. In respect of each public holiday, an employee is entitled to a paid day off on the holiday, a paid day off within a month, an extra day’s annual leave, or an extra day’s pay, as decided by the employer.


Take Advantage of BrightPay Connect 

Learn how technology and automation turn daunting payroll tasks into a smooth and profitable process. Join our upcoming webinar on 6th April where we will look at how to address the challenge that most accountants face, over-servicing and under-charging. 


Greener Supply Chain with BrightPay 

Here at BrightPay we take environmental responsibility very seriously and are committed to developing our business towards ecological sustainability at both a company and an individual level. Our new carbon efficient offices will open in 2021. Additionally, we are excited to announce our very ambitious sustainability campaign to become net zero by 2023. To achieve this, we have recently established a passionate Green Team to educate, promote and inspire sustainability to our employees and our loyal customers. Subscribe to BrightPay’s sustainability newsletter to follow our journey.

Find out more

 

Posted byHolly McHughinCustomer Update


Mar 2021

30

How does the TWSS Reconciliation affect me?

Are you wondering why you now owe Revenue money as a result of The Temporary Wage Subsidy Scheme (TWSS)?

For the first 6 weeks of the TWSS back in March 2020, during the transitional phase, Revenue refunded a flat rate of €410 per employee per pay period, regardless of the employees' earnings. In a lot of cases this €410 exceeded the subsidy that the employee was entitled to receive, and it was made very clear from the start that there would be a reconciliation to rectify this overpayment.

The scheme was designed to assist employers and employees impacted by COVID-19, and to encourage companies to keep their workers on the payroll. If you didn’t avail of the TWSS then you won’t have a TWSS reconciliation.

On Monday 22nd March 2021, Revenue advised that most employers can now access their TWSS reconciliation balances in Revenue’s Online Service (ROS). The reconciliation balance is based on the actual information provided to Revenue by the employer.

The TWSS reconciliation period opened on 22 March 2021 and employers have until the end of June to review and accept the reconciliation amounts. Revenue are strongly recommending that employers take the time to read & understand the guidance before accepting the reconciliation amounts.

Approximately 40% of the employers that availed of TWSS are balanced. Revenue have said they will not pursue companies that owe a balance of under €500 as they will be considered balanced.

BrightPay hosted a TWSS reconciliation webinar with guest speakers from Revenue on 24th March 2021. During the webinar, we discussed the reconciliation process and had a Questions & Answers session at the end. Watch the webinar on-demand now.

You can also click here to register for our next webinar, which takes place on 21st April 2021

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Posted byHolly McHughinPayroll SoftwareStart-up


Mar 2021

16

TWSS Reconciliation – An Important Update

One year after the introduction of the Temporary Wage Subsidy Scheme (TWSS), the Revenue reconciliation process is finally underway. Revenue have now compared the total subsidy amounts paid to employees, against the subsidy amounts paid to the employer. This has allowed Revenue to determine the amount of TWSS owed back to Revenue from employers.

All employers who availed of the TWSS will receive a Statement of Account in their ROS inbox on Monday 22nd March 2021. Employers will have until the end of June to review the detailed information and accept the reconciliation amounts. Once you have accepted the reconciliation calculation, you will either be paid any additional amount due to you by Revenue or be required to repay any amount that you owe to Revenue.

Free Webinar

Join Thesaurus Software for a free webinar on Wednesday 24th March at 10.30 am. In this webinar, we will be joined by a guest speaker from Revenue who will discuss what you need to know about the TWSS reconciliation process. Plus, we will demonstrate how to cross-check reconciliation amounts with the payroll software and how payroll automation can help your business during COVID-19.

Agenda

  • TWSS Reconciliation Process
  • Reconciling amounts in Thesaurus Payroll Manager
  • Reconciling amounts in BrightPay
  • How payroll automation can help you with COVID-19

*** High demand for this webinar. Book your place now to avoid disappointment. ***

If you are unable to attend the webinar at the specified time, simply register and we will send you the recording afterwards.

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Posted byRachel HynesinEventsPayroll


Mar 2021

12

Online Payslips: Their benefits and why you should use them

Why switch to online payslips?

Online payslips have a number of benefits

The best payroll software not only makes processing payroll easy but also allows employees to quickly access their payslips. Gone are the days when payslips were printed and manually sent out by post. These days employees look for easy and immediate access to their wage information.

BrightPay Connect, an optional cloud portal that integrates with BrightPay payroll, provides new useful and impressive features. It allows you to secure your payroll data to the cloud and provides employers and employees with their own payroll dashboard which can be accessed through the web or by a smartphone app. Offering payslips online can bring numerous advantages to your business. Let’s take a look at five benefits of having payslips in the cloud. 

1. Saves Time

BrightPay Connect and BrightPay payroll software are fully integrated. This means that once you’ve finalised the pay period on BrightPay, the payslips will automatically appear in the online portal according to your specified date and time settings. Your payroll processor no longer needs to spend time emailing or printing payslips. With BrightPay Connect, it’s quick and automatic. 

2. Cost-Effective

Electronic payslips are cost-effective. You can reduce your spend on paper, print and postage. Even better, you can save money on labour time too. Less time spent on yet another administrative task frees up your employees so they can concentrate on more urgent responsibilities.

3. Environmentally Friendly 

Switching to online payslips is an easy and quick win to help make your business more green. By providing payslips through a cloud portal, you can reduce the amount of waste you produce. Creating an environmentally friendly work environment also has the added benefit of appealing to employees who are eco-conscious.

4. Ensures GDPR Compliance

Payroll data contains sensitive personal information that must comply with all requirements set out by the GDPR. For instance, in the case of emailing payslips you are required to password protect them and set unique passwords for each employee. However, if you want to simplify the process while ensuring you’re compliant with the GDPR and all of its requirements, then using a secure cloud portal is the solution. Using BrightPay Connect, you can be assured you are GDPR compliant.

5. Cloud Security

Not only does BrightPay Connect ensure GDPR compliance but it also makes sure your employee data is protected from cyber-attacks, such as distributed denial-of-service (DDoS) attacks, authentication hacking, exposure flaws and request forgery. By utilising Microsoft Azure, BrightPay Connect keeps your employee’s payslip information safe when it is in transit and when it’s being stored. 

Book a demo of BrightPay Connect today to discover more features that can help you streamline your payroll and HR processes.

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Posted byÁine CourtneyinGDPRPayroll


Mar 2021

10

COVID-19 & Working from Home - 1 Year On

It’s been exactly one year since BrightPay sent all employees to work from home for 2 weeks as a mysterious flu-like disease called COVID-19 began spreading across Ireland and the UK. Those 2 weeks have turned in 52 weeks... and counting.

On March 10th 2020, employees were given access to all the tools and resources needed to work from home well in advance of the lockdown panic that came towards the end of March 2020. BrightPay worked with employees to try and strike a balance between ensuring employees could be productive and focused when not in the office, whilst also juggling often hectic home lives as we all adjusted to lockdown. Keeping in-touch and keeping moral up was a key priority.

The company was in a fortunate position to be able to continue employing all members of staff during such a scary and uncertain time. BrightPay’s COVID-19 response plan involved additional staffing and increased hours to assist customers. With payroll being an essential service and part of every business, the show had to go on!

BrightPay has been at the forefront for employers and accountants when it comes to The Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme (CJRS) and were the first payroll software provider to release software upgrades to cater for the schemes as changes were announced. BrightPay’s overall response to COVID-19 was rated 98.6% in a recent customer survey, and this included payroll upgrades, webinars, online guidance and customer support.

BrightPay won the COVID-19 Hero Award (supplier) at the Accounting Excellence Awards that took place recently. There were a number of criteria that were considered by the panel for this award. Judging took into account the speed, time and relevance of businesses’ COVID-19 response and how many customers accessed it.

Despite all the COVID-19 scheme changes, upgrades and webinars, the developers have been kept busy constantly improving the software and introducing new features. BrightPay’s optional add-on product, BrightPay Connect now supports two-factor authentication sign in. This means you can add an extra layer of security to the employer login on your BrightPay Connect account in case your password is stolen.

As remote and flexible working are now the new normal, BrightPay in tandem with BrightPay Connect now allows for a completely seamless "working from home" experience where there are multiple individuals who work on or require access to the same employer files. BrightPay Connect can help you prevent conflicting copies of the payroll, including an ‘other user check’ and a ‘version check’ when opening the payroll.

Let’s hope we all return to a somewhat normal life within the next year, and that I won’t be writing ‘working from home 104 weeks later’ this time next year. BrightPay wishes you the very best as we enter Year 2 of living with COVID-19.

If you are looking to change payroll software provider or looking to bring your payroll in-house, please don’t hesitate to get in touch. Book a free 15-minute online demo to see how BrightPay can change your world of payroll.

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Posted byHolly McHughinEvents


Mar 2021

8

International Women’s Day 2021

Thesaurus Software is proud to be supporting International Women’s Day 2021.

The theme of International Women’s Day this year is “Choose to Challenge”, a theme we wholeheartedly agree with. When we challenge the norms, the status quo, the “because that’s just the way it is”, we create change. At Thesaurus Software we firmly believe that change is necessary for development and improvement, so much so that it is embedded in our core values.

This year we are enhancing our Inclusion and Diversity efforts, in the hope that all staff will feel comfortable in bringing their whole self to work. International Women’s Day is our first day of celebration this year, our aim is not only to celebrate our women, but to raise awareness of inclusion more generally.

Promoting Gender Equality at Thesaurus

We are proud to say that we have always had a strong representation of women right across our company.

Our senior management team is 66% female. Across the Company as a whole, we are 64% female.

As we grow, we are continuously looking at how we can best assist our employees to grow and be themselves. In the last six months, we have introduced two key initiatives which help us achieve this.

  • Firstly, LinkedIn Learning has been made available to all employees. LinkedIn Learning has been a game-changer for our employees and opened the window on learning and awareness. 
  • Secondly, we have just introduced paid maternity and paternity leave. We really hope that this will help new parents to be successful both at work and at home. 

Our Female Leaders

We asked some of our female leaders for their thoughts on working in leadership;

“It’s important that all managers inspire, engage, and encourage their team. This is what I strive for. As a female manager, I’m very privileged to work for a company that recognises and promotes these values for both men and women equally. Females in any workplace should never underestimate what they are capable of achieving” - Karen Bennett, Chief Commercial Officer

“My advice to my 20-year-old self would be to think of your career as a marathon, not a sprint. Don’t ever settle on the first job or career path you undertake, if you are not invested in it. Allow yourself the time to discover what are you passionate about doing. Finding a job that I love has certainly helped me reach the point in my career that I’m at today.” - Victoria Clarke, Product Development Manager

“As a woman working for Thesaurus Software for the past 23 years and fast approaching retirement, I feel I am now entering the most exciting period of my career at Thesaurus Software and rather than winding down, the journey forward in this fast-growing company, supported by our amazing CEO, Paul Byrne has no limits.” - Ann Tighe, Senior Business Development Manager 

“Working at Thesaurus as a woman in management, I feel inspired by other female leaders and peers within the company to lead my team with the same encouragement I feel every day. I have always felt hugely supported as a woman within Thesaurus which has provided me with the tools I need to motivate and empower my team, particularly as I progressed into the management role.” - Cailin Reilly, Sales Manager

“After joining Thesaurus Software as a Marketing Intern, I never thought that I would be where I am today after just 6 years. Working at Thesaurus Software has really given me the opportunity to progress, both in terms of personal and professional development. No two years have been the same and it has been an exciting time to be part of the team, helping the company grow to where it is today.” - Rachel Hynes, Marketing Manager

IWD 2021 in Thesaurus

Some of our fantastic team have taken part in the IWD challenge, standing up socially distantly and choosing to challenge. See their fab pictures below.

This year, we will also be using our LinkedIn Learning platform to raise awareness around inclusion and equity in the workplace. We have a series of short informative videos addressing a range of topics that we will share with staff remotely during March.

Our message to all our employees today is, bring your whole self to work, your thoughts and ideas are valued, we love to hear them. Working together, trusting, respecting and supporting each other we can only do great things.

Posted byLaura MurphyinEvents