We were delighted to have received a 99% Customer Satisfaction rate in our 2021 Customer Survey. The survey asked BrightPay payroll software customers to rate a number of different features, including its payroll features, its value for money, time saving capabilities, cost savings, and user interface. The results showed an overall 99% satisfaction rating with an overwhelming number of customers commenting on the software’s easy-to-use interface and intuitive design.
Whether you’re a business owner with a small team of employees or an accountant with 50 clients processing payroll for hundreds of employees, your payroll software should provide you with essential help. From quickly running multiple payment schedules side-by-side, to utilising the flexible report builder, and sending Payroll Submission Requests each pay period, BrightPay customers experience a quicker and more straightforward payroll process.
The importance of an intuitive software design cannot be overstated. It allows users to easily understand how the software works, learn how to use the software quickly with minimal instruction, and it provides for a more pleasant user experience. Payroll comes with many different components and factors to it and while BrightPay’s payroll software provides full functionality, it has not compromised on its design. Customers, both new and old, have commented on this. When asked why they would recommend the software to a colleague, replies included:
It’s been a challenging year for payroll processors, adapting to new schemes and subsidy rates, from the Temporary Wage Subsidy Scheme (TWSS) followed by the Employment Wage Subsidy Scheme (EWSS). BrightPay has quickly rolled out updates in response to these changes and have supported customers by partnering with Revenue to host frequent webinars. This allowed businesses and payroll processors to ask any questions that they had and ensured they had the most up-to-date information on the schemes. 99% of customers rated the free online webinars and payroll upgrades as excellent and 100% of customers rated phone and email support as excellent.
BrightPay’s excellent customer support is a point of pride, and we were delighted to see 98% of customers were extremely satisfied with the support they received the past year. The support offered to customers includes phone and email support from payroll specialists to free product demos, webinars, guides, and other documentation. Customer support is included in all licences and has been free for nearly 30 years!
BrightPay continues its development plan and to evolve to create the best customer experience possible. We recently rolled out new integrations with several accounting software so customers can send their payroll journals directly to their accounts at a click of a button. In addition to this, we launched an API with Modulr, the payments platform, facilitating direct payments to employees.
We’d like to thank all customers who took part in our customer survey. Your feedback is used to adapt the development strategy to ensure we’re delivering on what you really want when it comes to payroll software.
To discover more about BrightPay and how it can improve your payroll services and save you time, schedule a 15-minute demo with a member of our team today.
Do you backup your data regularly? 17% of businesses keep no data backups whatsoever and store information only on their computer's hard drive. The purpose of a backup is to create a copy of your data which can be recovered in the event that the original is disrupted. Backups protect against hardware failure, virus attacks, natural disasters, and human error.
A recent Hiscox report, which surveyed 355 companies in Ireland, showed that 41% of Irish businesses suffered at least one cyber-attack in 2020. The report also revealed that 6.5% of Irish firms paid a ransom following a ransomware attack.
It is essential that you backup your payroll data to protect your business and your employees. Your business can save time and money if any of the above events occur, and you have a copy of your data elsewhere. Discover three ways you can backup your data below.
Investing in cloud storage such as Google Drive or Dropbox allows you to keep your data safe in the cloud. You will need to remember to manually backup your data regularly. With cloud storage, an advantage is that your data has multiple backups within your storage provider’s data centres. This means that if something catastrophic happened to your backup, it is already backed up somewhere else.
A less popular option is backing up your data using a physical storage device or USB key. Your data transfer speeds are typically faster as you don’t require an internet connection. This method can come with its own risks and cost per GB can also be expensive.
If you process payroll in-house, BrightPay Payroll Software’s add-on product, BrightPay Connect, automatically backs up your payroll data to the cloud every 15-minutes and again when you close the file. A chronological history of backups will be maintained which can be restored to your PC at any time. Click here to book a free 15-minute online demo of BrightPay Connect.
To discover more about BrightPay and BrightPay Connect and how it can improve your payroll services and save you time, schedule a free online demo with a member of our team today. BrightPay payroll software also offers a 60-day free trial of its payroll software, an ideal way to test out the software to see if it’s the right fit for your business. The free trial version has full functionality with no limitations on any of the features. BrightPay Connect is not included in the free trial.
It’s coming close to the end-of-year madness, and as payroll processors you’re likely to be particularly busy in the lead-up to Christmas. Between managing the annual leave requests, Christmas bonuses, and holiday pay, there are a quite a few payroll tasks to sort out. To help you with this, we’ve put together a few key points to remember if you’re processing the payroll this Christmas.
A Christmas bonus can put a smile on every employee’s face and can be the perfect way to say ‘thank you’ for all the hard work done during a difficult year. However, it’s important you don’t get caught out on tax implications.
Under Revenue’s Small Business Exemption Scheme, employers can gift employees and directors a small benefit of up to €500 in value, tax free, each year. Certain guidelines must be followed:
With this tax-free benefit, you have the potential to save up to €653.65 in tax per employee as the total cost of a net €500 gift paid through payroll is €1,153.65. Remember though, if a benefit exceeds €500 in value, the full value of that benefit is subject to tax.
In order to qualify for the small benefit exemption, it is important that gift cards are not given to employees as a salary sacrifice. This means you cannot fund the bonus from a deduction of your employee’s salary. The rewards must be invoiced and paid external to payroll.
When to pay employees in December:
It’s common for many businesses to have a different payroll date in December. Often, employees will be paid earlier in December so they can cover their holiday expenses and because many businesses are closed at the end of the month.
It's likely only your monthly paid employees will be affected by this. If you plan to pay employees early, make sure you give yourself enough time to process the payroll in advance. Give your employees notice of the change in pay date and enough time that they can submit their expenses if they have any. Remember to make provisions to ensure that you report your employees’ pay to Revenue on or before the pay date.
Managing annual leave requests:
Christmas can be a very busy time for many businesses, and it may be also a time when employees are most looking to take annual leave. While you need to ensure you have enough employees working to cover this busy period, you should also look to be as fair as possible.
It’s recommended that you have a clear policy on holiday requests. Most often, a “first-come, first-served” approach is used. This provides a fair and transparent method for all employees. One way of achieving this is by using an employee app. BrightPay Connect, a cloud add-on to BrightPay Payroll Software, includes an employee self-service platform which can be accessed online or through the BrightPay Connect employee app. The app gives employees access to a self-service portal that they can use to request leave at any time. Once a request has been made, the employer or their manager, will be notified of it. When a request has been made it is time stamped, allowing you to see the order in which they come in. The employee will then be notified if the request has been accepted or rejected. BrightPay Connect also includes a company-wide calendar for the employer to view so that you can ensure that there is adequate staffing before approving an annual leave request.
Interested in learning more about annual leave management on BrightPay Connect? Book a free online demo here for a detailed walkthrough of everything BrightPay Connect has to offer you and your business.
There is no change to tax rates for 2022, the standard rate will remain at 20% and the higher rate at 40%.
USC Rates & Bands 2022
€0 – €12,012 @ 0.5%
€12,013 – €21,295 @ 2%
€21,296 – €70,044 @ 4.5%
€70,045 + @ 8%
Medical card holders and individuals aged 70 years and older whose aggregate income does not exceed €60,000 will continue to pay a maximum rate of 2%.
The emergency rate of USC remains at 8%.
Non-PAYE income in excess of €100,000 will continue to be subject to USC at 11%.
The Employment Wage Subsidy Scheme (EWSS) will continue until the end of April 2022 in a graduated form.
Level of subsidy the employer will receive is per paid employee
|Employee Gross Weekly Wages||Subsidy Payable|
|Less than €151.50||Nil|
|From €151.50 to €202.99||€151.50|
|From €203 to €1,462||€203|
|More than €1462||Nil|
The National Minimum Wage will increase by 30 cent from €10.20 to €10.50 per hour from January 1st 2022.
The weekly threshold for the higher rate of employer PRSI will increase to €410 from €398, this is in line with the increase in the National Minimum Wage.
Parent’s leave has been increased by two weeks, this brings it up to seven weeks from July 2022.
The reduced rate of 9% VAT for the tourism and hospitality sector will continue to apply until the end of August 2022.
There will be a €5 increase in all weekly Social Welfare payments with effect from January 2022. The maximum personal rate of Illness Benefit will be increased to €208 per week. Maternity Benefit, Parent’s Benefit and Paternity Benefit will be increased to €250 per week.
Where an employer does not pay the e-working allowance (€3.20 per day) to an e-worker, employees will be able to claim tax relief on 30% of the cost of vouched expenses for heat, light and broadband in respect of the days worked from home.
The BIK exemption for battery electric vehicles will be extended out to 2025 with a tapering effect on the vehicle value. This measure will take effect from 2023. For BIK purposes, the original market value of an electric vehicle will be reduced by €35,000 for 2023, €24,000 for 2024 and €10,000 for 2025.
In Ireland, employers currently do not have any legal obligation to pay employees who are absent from work due to illness. In the private sector, it is at the discretion of the employer as to whether or not they decide to pay employees who are unable to work due to sickness.
A survey from 2019 found that only 44% of employers offered their employees some form of paid sick leave. For employees working in the public sector, The Public Sector Sick Leave Scheme was introduced in 2014. Under the scheme, public sector employees are entitled to 7 days paid sick leave within a continuous 2-year period, without having to submit a medical certificate. When a medical certificate is provided, employees are entitled to 92 calendar days of fully paid sick leave followed by 91 calendar days on half pay, subject to a maximum of 183 calendar days in a rolling 4-year period.
The effects of the COVID-19 pandemic shone a light on the need for statutory sick pay to be introduced into the private sector. Having no sick pay entitlements meant that employees were more likely to attend work, despite experiencing symptoms of COVID-19, risking passing on the virus to colleagues. Employees who were working from home also took fewer sick days during the pandemic as because they did not have to leave their homes they continued to work, despite feeling unwell. Both of these situations can be damaging to an employee’s health.
When there is no sick pay scheme in place, many employees will attend work while unwell as they do not want to miss out on pay. This does not benefit either the employer or the employee. If the employee is trying to work while they are sick, they are not going to be able to be as productive as they usually would be. This could also lengthen the time it takes for them to recover from the illness and they may not be able to work to their full potential for a lot longer than it would have been if they had taken the time off needed to recuperate.
Offering employees sick pay leave can actually help reduce the number of sick days taken by employees overall. As well as getting better faster, If the employee does not come into the workplace sick, they won't spread the sickness to other employees.
Statutory entitlement to sick pay will be phased in as part of a 4-year plan beginning in January 2022 and will be paid by employers at a rate of 70% of an employee’s wage, subject to a daily threshold of €110. The table below shows how the number of sick days covered by employers will rise over the four years.
Payroll processors may be wondering how the introduction of statutory sick pay in Ireland will affect how they calculate pay for employees who have taken sick leave. Within BrightPay payroll software, at the moment, if an employer offers paid sick leave to their employees, payroll processors can add sick pay as an ‘addition type’ within the payroll software. The employer can then manually add the amount of sick pay owed to the employee when entering the employee’s pay information for that period. The employer can add sick days taken to the employee’s calendar and choose whether these days were certified or uncertified. The days where sick leave have been taken will be colour-coded and the total number of sick days taken will be displayed on the bottom right-hand side of the screen. This means that you can clearly track the number of sick days taken by each employee.
Through our optional cloud add-on, BrightPay Connect, employees can access an online portal through an internet browser or through the BrightPay Connect mobile app. Any days taken as sick leave will be highlighted meaning that the employee can keep track of how many sick days they have taken so far that year.
At BrightPay, through the UK version of our software, we have experience with applying sick leave entitlements to employee’s pay since 2012. Having this experience means we are well prepared to make any changes to the Irish version of our software that will make calculating and tracking an employee’s Statutory Sick Pay entitlements as easy as possible for payroll processors.
To learn more about BrightPay’s features, book a free online demo today.
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.
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.
*** 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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
Due to the changes and updates to the COVID-19 Government schemes, our support team put together the top four common questions – asked by you and answered by us!
When earnings fluctuate and are within the limits for the Employment Wage Subsidy Scheme (EWSS) in some pay periods and not others, do we need to untick EWSS for the employee?
No. There is no need to remove the tick for EWSS, our software will remove the indicator from the payroll submission (PSR) in the pay periods the earnings fall outside the relevant limits.
The subsidy being received is more than we are paying the employees, do we pay the employees the difference or will we owe that money back to Revenue?
In some scenarios the employer will receive a subsidy greater than the wages they are paying; they will not have to repay that money to Revenue. The employee should only be paid the wages that are due and not any extra. In other scenarios the subsidy received from Revenue will be less than the wages they are paying.
What payments are permitted under EWSS e.g., can you pay the employees commission?
Yes. The EWSS is a subsidy payable to employers, therefore, it will not show on employee payslips or in myAccount. Under EWSS employers are required to pay employees in the normal manner i.e., calculating and deducting Income Tax, USC and employee PRSI through the payroll. Employees should be paid the wages that are due to them which can include commission, overtime etc.
When employees are claiming the Pandemic Unemployment Payment (PUP) from the Department of Social Protection, do we need to do anything on the payroll?
Yes. You should ensure that the employee’s payment is changed to zero, continue to update them with zero pay until such time you are paying them wages again.
A thank you note,
Well where should I start? When the whole country went into lockdown back in March, I was faced with the new task of working from home with my three young children.
So overnight I became a work/stay-at-home mom and a teacher all at once! It was definitely a huge challenge which was very stressful at times; trying to find a new routine that we could all settle into but we managed for the most part.
Working on the phones during this time has also been a huge task as everything about how payroll was processed had changed in both Ireland and the UK. All the different rules and processes that we had to learn about as all our customers were coming to us looking for answers was another hurdle in itself. We had a number of software upgrades that were released based on changes made by Revenue which also had to be tested before being released.
My children are aged 9, 6 and (just turned) 5 so the younger two don’t understand the concept of being quiet and would be hurtling through the house playing games with each other, making as much noise as they possibly could! And then my dogs would start barking wanting to join in on all the fun! Always the way when you want them to be quiet. But every single person I spoke to on the phones was so understanding and compassionate with me always telling me to tend to them first and not to worry.
All of our customers themselves were under an enormous amount of pressure because, let’s face it, they are the ones that have to process payroll at the end of the day and are the ones answerable to all their employees if something isn’t done right. Payroll during this pandemic was crucial and even though themselves were under pressure they always related back to my situation with understanding. So thank you, each and every one of you.
I also wanted to say another huge thank you to my managers and colleagues. Everyone has been so supportive of one another. We can no longer see each other to bounce queries off each other so we now communicate through Teams which has been a lifesaver. Anytime anyone mentioned that they were having a rough day or morning they would always tell you to go off the phones to make yourself a cuppa and come back when you’ve managed to breath - that they would man the phones and not to be worrying. This in itself was massive.
I just wholeheartedly wanted to say thank you to everyone for all your understanding and support as the last 8 months wouldn’t have been possible without it!
Here are the main points from Budget 2021, as delivered by Minister for Finance Paschal Donohoe.
There is no change to tax rates for 2021, the standard rate will remain at 20% and the higher rate at 40%.
In addition, there is no change to Standard Rate Cut Off Points (SRCOPs).
The Earned Income Tax Credit will be increased by €150 from €1,500 to €1,650 to bring it in line with the PAYE tax credit.
The Dependent Relative Tax Credit will be increased by €175 from €70 to €245 to support families with caring responsibilities.
For 2021, USC will apply at the following rates for those earning in excess of €13,000
|Up to €12,012||0.5%|
Medical card holders and individuals aged 70 years and older whose aggregate income does not exceed €60,000 will pay a maximum rate of 2%.
The emergency rate of USC remains at 8%.
Non-PAYE income in excess of €100,000 is subject to USC at 11%.
The National Minimum Wage will increase by 10 cent from €10.10 to €10.20 per hour from January 1st 2021.
The weekly threshold for the higher rate of employer PRSI will increase to €398 from €395, this is in line with the increase in the National Minimum Wage.
The age to qualify for the State Pension will remain at 66 for 2021, it was due to increase to 67.
The ‘waiting days’ for Illness Benefit will reduce from 6 days to 3 days for all new claims from the end of February 2021.
Parent’s Benefit has been increased by three weeks, this brings it up to five weeks. The leave must be taken during the first year following the birth of a child.
The Employment Wage Subsidy Scheme (EWSS) is due to continue until 31st March 2021, a wage subsidy scheme in some form is expected to be in place until the end of 2021.
The tax debt warehousing scheme will be expanded to include repayments of the Temporary Wage Subsidy Scheme (TWSS) owed by employers.
A new scheme was introduced for businesses impacted by Covid-19 restrictions, it will provide support for businesses that have had to close because of Covid-19. The scheme is operational from October 13th until March 31st 2021.
The payment will be calculated as a percentage of the business’s average weekly VAT exclusive turnover in 2019 subject to a maximum payment of €5,000 per week. The first payments are expected to be made in Mid-November.
The 13.5% rate of VAT for the tourism and hospitality sector will be reduced to 9% from November 1st 2020, the reduced rate will remain in place until December 31st 2021.
For the latest payroll updates, don’t miss our next free webinar where we are joined by Revenue.
10.30am | 19th November
If you are unable to attend the webinar at the specified time, simply register and we will send you the recording afterwards.