Outsourcing your payroll to an external company can be extremely beneficial. They can save you time, resources and peace of mind. However, it is crucial to choose the right provider. Partnering up with the wrong firm can cost you dearly, starting from money and reputation to serious legal charges. So, what does your ideal payroll partner look like?

We have created a quick checklist of what to look for in the right payroll provider:

1.  Experience and expertise in payroll and tax compliance

Before choosing a payroll partner, you need to make sure that they understand your unique circumstances and country-specific legal nuances. Since countries amend laws all the time, it is hard to stay on top of all the changes. Nevertheless, it is your company’s responsibility to comply with local legislation. Failure to do so, may result in audits and penalties. Payroll firms know tax law. Or at least they should. It is their job to keep up with employment regulations. Consequently, if your payroll provider cannot guarantee accuracy, it’s time to look for a new one.

Recommendation: Choose a payroll provider that has in-country experts and executes their services themselves rather than the ones who outsource their solutions to third-party partners. Labour laws vary from country to country a lot and have many nuances. It is important to deal with someone who has in-depth knowledge, rather than understands them superficially.

2. Reliability

The whole point of signing up with a payroll firm is so that they provide you with the assistance you need. Does your partner ensure sufficient customer support? Do you get enough representation? Do they offer troubleshooting? Do they keep their promises? If the answer to any of those questions is ‘no’ and you often feel like you are left on your own, again, it’s a sign to reconsider your options.

Recommendation: Choose smaller companies where you have direct contact with compliance experts. As well as dedicated account managers that work with you from the beginning till the end rather than general customer support. This way you avoid the risks of non-compliance and delays with your case.

3. Net retention and ROI

The number one reason you outsource payroll is to make the most out of your business. Different payroll providers execute their solutions differently. Therefore, net retention will vary from company to company, depending on how versatile their pro services are. The right partner will always have your best interest at heart, ensuring that you get the best return on investment.

Recommendation: Avoid payroll outsourcing companies that offer retention rates that are too good to be true and are much higher than what their competitors provide. Often, these kinds of retention fees are achieved through compromising compliance.

4.  Flexibility

Does your potential payroll partner offer you out-of-the-box take-it-or-leave services? Or do they strive to bespeak their solutions to meet your individual needs? Smart partners go the extra mile to create lasting business relationships. Payroll companies are there to make your life easier. However, accommodating to whatever is given, rather than going for what your business really requires, is unlikely to pay off in long term.

Recommendation: Every payroll company is restricted by local employment law and has certain limitations to what they are able to do. Nonetheless, if your provider constantly refuses to do things in a different way, it may be a sign that they are simply re-sellers outsourcing their services to a third-party organisation. In this case, you can always reach out to other industry representatives for a free consultation in order to check what your options are.

5.  Access to a variety of services

As much as companies try to plan ahead, they can never be 100% sure what businesses will demand in the future. Hence, it is worth investing in a partner that has a multitude of products to offer. Apart from standard payroll and tax calculation, an Employer of Record like Bradford Jacobs also offers work permits, Talent Acquisition and 360 degrees corporate services. Working with one core supplier will significantly streamline the process.

Recommendation: There is nothing wrong with going for a provider that specialises in one type of services only. They still can be great professionals. However, the problem may arise when you need more than payroll. Working with multiple parties

on a single project can significantly slow down its completion and compromise its success.

The right international payroll partner can be a valuable asset to your business. Contact us to discover how your business can profit from our global payroll services.