Every business has to handle a long list of administrative functions on top of the work they do for clients and customers. This means that no matter the industry, every organization has to juggle internal administrative work with client work. For many companies, it’s tough to strike a balance, and the admin burden of just staying in business quickly becomes overwhelming. One way of easing the burden of common admin tasks, like payroll and HR functions, is to utilize various software platforms to streamline processes and reduce manual work. This can work, but it’s not always the most efficient path to take.

Using multiple software systems to complete critical administrative tasks can help in the short term, or with specific tasks like processing payroll, but it can actually create other problems. For instance, if your system for payroll, time and reporting are not integrated, you have to enter the same information into multiple places. Not only does this take extra time, but it can also lead to costly mistakes. In fact, this kind of approach can even prevent growth and limit profitability.

On the other hand, using a single software platform can streamline tedious administrative tasks, limit errors and free up your team to focus on their to-do list. This has several positive effects, including increased morale, reduced stress and improved efficiency. The right platform can handle multiple types of tasks, includes checks and balances, auto-verifications to reduce errors and even find money and time saving opportunities.

Here are some things you should look for when considering moving to a new administrative platform for your small business:

Advanced Payroll Support: Tax filings, verifying time, payroll processing and reporting are just a few of the things an admin team has to tackle. Having a single system that starts at time and attendance and includes enhanced payroll services will help support your admin team through various critical processes. The right system will include advanced payroll calculations and function that reduce errors, help verify data and make reporting simple.

Enhanced HR Support: There are many HR related functions that can be streamlined, including background checks, new hire reporting and onboarding. Additional support to look for includes assistance with employee handbooks and workforce management assistance, like PTO tracking. When possible, consider a service that also offers HR consulting so that your organization can stay compliant and up to date with changing regulations.  

Benefits Management Support: Benefits management can quickly become a burden, even for experienced teams. This is even more difficult for organizations that offer retirement options, like 401 (k) plans. Having support in place to help with retirement, health, dental and vision plans can save your admin team a great deal of work and stress. And since so many rules and regulations oversee these areas, it can also keep you compliant.

As an added bonus, you should consider a software platform with a robust communication hub. This will allow you to quickly and efficiently get messages out to your team, see past communication and even take surveys. If you are a government contractor with reporting issues, you’ll want to look at a system that is designed to handle certified payroll and advanced reporting functions

Overcoming implementation challenges

Once you’ve found the right software platform for your company, you face the implementation challenge. This includes getting everyone onboard with the change along with the technicalities involved in updating your processes. Some organizations are quick to embrace change, but many struggle to adapt. This makes getting everyone onboard one of the first challenges you face.

To help everyone adjust, focus on answering “what, why and how” at the same time that you introduce the change.

What problem are you fixing? Sum up the problem you’re solving in a short statement. Make it easy to understand and as universal as possible.

Why does it need to be fixed? Illustrate the benefits of solving the problem. Make sure that you show how the proposed change will solve the problem.

How will you roll out the change? Let everyone know your plan for getting the new platform in place, including how training will be handled and a timeline.

Moving from multiple systems to one system is a great way to improve your overall efficiency, but change can be difficult. If you’re interested in more detailed advice on implementing new software and processes , this detailed article may help.

The material presented here is educational in nature and is not intended to be, nor should be relied upon, as legal or financial advice. Please consult with an attorney or financial professional for advice.