Standards in South African payroll administration are increasing and businesses are coping better with this discipline despite continuous socio-economic pressure.

This is one of the key messages from the Cape leg of the South African Payroll Association’s annual national conference, which took place in early August at the Spier Wine Estate in Stellenbosch.

The theme of this year’s conference is “SA – Leaders in Payroll”, a title that the membership-driven organisation’s chairman James McKerrell says is an accurate reflection of the current situation.

“We are encouraged by the level of discussion that is taking place within the industry, as well as the buy-in we secure from decision makers about the conference and the role played by the Association as an industry representative body. South Africa is very strong in terms of the growing appreciation for payroll administration, innovation and technology, as well as the need to uphold standards of service delivery,” says McKerrell.

The notion that an effective, well-maintained and managed payroll department is directly related to success in business is taking root McKerrell adds, but, at the same time, local payroll administration is not without its difficulties.

Delegates at the Cape Conference were given sobering advice from keynote speakers about the impact of issues such as payroll legislation, compliance and labour law.

These issues affect a business’ ability to regulate information, comply with the law and changing processes, procedures and systems that are used to record data and manage resources.

They continue to force decision makers to keep up to date with innovation, with management systems that empower users.