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Payroll Outsourcing As A Crisis Management Strategy

Crisis management, as defined by financial content platform Investopedia, is referred to as “the identification of a threat to an organisation and its stakeholders in order to mount an effective response to it”

An effective crisis management strategy is imperative for any organisation. Even the most established or best-managed organisation is not immune to crises caused by internal or external factors. Crisis management allows organisations to anticipate and effectively mitigate risks for the benefit of employees and the business.

Understanding crisis management

Any business, regardless big or small, is inevitably exposed to problems that are likely to have a negative impact from time to time. These crises can take many form – a terrorist attack, a pandemic, natural disasters, white-collated crimes or even a data breach.

Majority of organisations would have experienced crises that are operational in nature. Results from PwC’s 2019 Global Crisis Survey, over half of the organisations surveyed (53%) have indicated that at least one of the crises they experience are related to operational processes. This includes operational breakdowns, product failures, and supply chain issues. Tech-related crises comes in second, with around one-third of organisations indicating that they experienced tech-related crises arising from technology failures or cybercrime attacks.

Who is responsible for crisis management?

Everyone and no one. When it comes to identifying who owns crisis management, there is a lot of finger pointing. Truth is, there is an overlap of roles and responsibilities. Likewise, there is a need for teams to work cohesively to remove all vulnerabilities from internal systems, including core functions such as finance and payroll. As organisations become more sophisticated and attentive to crises, more organisations are turning to external help.

Outsourcing can make a difference

Crises can either make or break an organisation and its employees. Hence, it is crucial for business leaders to maintain job security in addition to effectively managing crises. This includes focusing on core employee engagement drivers such as compensation and benefits. In the face of a crisis, outsourcing these core functions such as payroll, can help to alleviate some of the stress associated with calculating employees’ salaries and ensuring timely disbursement.

Outsourcing and automating these functions not only ensures business continuity, it also frees up valuable time for business leaders to recalibrate strategies in order for the business to thrive amidst challenging environments. Concurrently, it can also help to garner significant cost savings for the organisation in the long run.

Payroll outsourcing and digitisation

Payroll is a business function that does not stop in any crisis. With the adoption of digital technology and cloud-based software, there are plenty of external payroll provider options in the market today. Today, the Human Capital Management (HCM) platform integrates multiple data sources to provide a central platform for employee self-service capabilities. The beauty of a HCM platform is that it provides organisations with the scale, feasibility and flexibility in ensuring that core business functions still continue in the event of an unexpected crisis.

Outsourcing payroll also helps to ensure that important and critical payroll information is stored securely. Most payroll provider platforms have in place robust and secure data protection protocols to minimise the risk of hacking or data breaches. After all, taking steps and measures to prevent any crisis is the best way to effectively manage a crisis.

Today, technology serves as a powerful tool in helping organisations get through any crisis, and to prepare and adapt to unexpected and adverse developments. With the plethora of technology applications and software available, organisations need to be able to sieve out the right technological tools to support and protect their business and assets. It is also important for organisations to consistently review and upgrade technology in order to stay ahead of today’s crisis.


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