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Ekspert spécialisé en gestion paie - Abacus partner -anobags

Accurate and transparent payroll management is essential to the smooth running of any business, especially in times of uncertainty and change. It is crucial to employee engagement, productivity and well-being, ensuring that employees are fairly rewarded for their contribution to the success of the business. However, challenges persist.

According to a recent survey by a global player in centralised payroll solutions, errors in payroll processing are on the rise, with only 33% of companies reporting 90% or better accuracy in payroll processing, down from 52% before 2020. What’s more, almost a third only discover these errors during a payroll audit, while a quarter only detect them when they receive a complaint from an employee.
This situation is worrying because it is leading to an increase in requests for clarification from employees: in fact, almost half of the companies surveyed report an increase in payroll-related requests since before 2020. Yet despite a growing awareness of these issues, only 36% of companies plan to actively tackle them in the next two to three years.

In addition, there is a growing shortage of skilled staff to manage payroll effectively, with almost 48% of employers reporting difficulties in finding the required skills from outside their organisation. This situation is compounded by the fact that payroll teams spend a considerable amount of time on secondary administrative tasks, with more than one in five companies surveyed (22%) estimating that their teams spend more than 30 hours a week consolidating data between payroll and HR systems. Fortunately, there are some promising solutions!

Nearly 70% of companies claim to have introduced more frequent internal audits over the last three years, and 61% have conducted employee surveys to detect payroll errors.
However, it is the automation of payroll processes that could significantly improve efficiency, with only 53% of companies surveyed acknowledging that less than 30% of their payroll processes are currently automated.

This is where outsourcing payroll to specialists such as Ekspert makes real sense.
Outsourcing their payroll management allows companies to be relieved of the current challenges it entails, such as researching and financing innovative technological solutions and training and developing staff.
Using this solution would not only improve the accuracy and efficiency of payroll, but also free up employees’ time so that they can concentrate on higher value-added tasks.
In conclusion, payroll management is much more than a simple administrative task. It is an essential pillar of the company, which deserves all the attention it needs to evolve into the future.
When you turn to Ekspert, specialists in payroll management and an Abacus partner, you can be sure of being surrounded by professionals experienced in this complex and strategic process.

*Source: ADP-The_potential_of_payroll-Global_payroll_survey_2022_CH_EN

And how can you make it more profitable?

In the world of HR and finance, cutting costs is often at the top of the priority list. This drive to optimizing costs intensified after the pandemic to ensure long-term business continuity.

Did you know that, on average, remuneration accounts for 50-60% of a company’s expenditure?
The cost of running payroll varies depending on a number of factors, including the size of the business, the payroll operating model and the cantons/countries where employees are based. If you manage payroll in-house, costs include the purchase of software licences, installation of hardware and software, as well as the human and material resources required to run the payroll and maintain and upgrade the payroll infrastructure. Companies therefore need to think strategically about payroll management.
And that’s where Ekspert – a payroll specialist and Abacus partner – comes in!
Opting for an outsourced payroll management system can result in substantial savings, ranging from 15% to 35%.
Let’s see how:

  1. Reduced compliance costs: outsourcing compliance monitoring to a payroll provider avoids the costs associated with ensuring compliance with local employment laws, thereby reducing potential penalties.
  2. Reduced direct costs: choosing an outsourced payroll solution reduces the time and therefore the costs spent on entering HR data into the CRM and on finding answers to employees’ questions (tax, employment law, pensions, family allowances, etc.).
  3. Elimination of payroll errors: payroll errors can lead to costly staff turnover. A unified payroll reduces pay errors, which translates into significant savings in terms of recruitment and integration.
  4. Increased efficiency of the payroll process: payroll outsourcing enables many of the related tasks to be automated, reducing the time spent on tedious processes and allowing you to concentrate on higher value-added tasks.
  5. Efficient payroll reporting: consolidated payroll reports provides easy access to reliable data, reducing the time needed to draw up reports and enabling faster, more informed decisions.

In addition, it is important to consider hidden costs, such as the integration, training and replacement of payroll professionals, as well as system maintenance costs.
By outsourcing payroll processing, companies can convert the fixed cost of payroll administration into a variable cost, based on the number of employees and company sites involved. This offers greater flexibility and savings on a large scale.
In conclusion, while the issue of payroll cost is important, it is essential to consider the potential savings and long-term financial benefits of an efficient and cost-effective payroll.

By entrusting payroll management to specialists such as Ekspert, Abacus partner, companies can not only make substantial savings, but also benefit from cutting-edge expertise in the field of payroll management and salary administration in Switzerland.

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Your Abacus partner explains the potential impact of this change

Dear professionals, a major transformation is on its way for the Swiss labour market.
Imagine an environment where every employee enjoys greater financial security in the event of illness. This is precisely what the recent Swiss parliamentary initiative is proposing, and it could mean the end of the Bern, Zurich and Basel scales as we know them.
Under article 324a of the Swiss Code of Obligations (CO), sick employees receive their salary for a fixed period, but only after three months’ employment. At present, this is managed either by the cantonal scales or by collective insurance. The cantonal scales vary according to seniority, offering up to 3 months’ salary after 5 years’ service. Group insurance, on the other hand, guarantees at least 80% of salary for up to 730 days, with the premium partly covered by the employer.
The Swiss National Council recently approved a motion for a new law requiring employers to insure all employees against loss of earnings in the event of illness. The aim of this measure is to offer more uniform protection, avoiding the current disparities. However, it raises questions, particularly for small businesses, about the financial impact of this obligation.

How will this affect payroll management?

At Ekspert – Swiss Payroll Specialist and Abacus Partner – we are keeping a close eye on these legislative developments to offer you payroll management and outsourcing solutions that anticipate these changes. Our expertise enables us to adapt your company’s payroll practices, ensuring compliance and financial optimisation in the changing legislative landscape.
Do these changes represent an opportunity or a challenge for Swiss companies?
How is your company preparing to navigate this new framework?
At Ekspert, specialists in Swiss payroll management, we’re here to help!

What do you need to be aware of when applying for sabbatical leave in terms of dealing with the pension fund, AVS and insurance?

It all depends: if your employee is paid during his/her leave, then 1st and 2nd pillar contributions are maintained.

If not, be sure to inform your employee of the following, as the consequences can be serious:

1st PILLAR (AVS/AI) :

If the employee’s main residence remains in Switzerland, the obligation to contribute to the 1st pillar (AVS/AI) continues. Abroad, the obligation to contribute ceases, but it is sometimes possible to make voluntary contributions to the AVS/AI to avoid pension gaps.

2nd PILLAR (BVG):

Unpaid leave can leave a gap in your pension fund. However, this can be avoided by making voluntary 2nd pillar contributions. Contributions can be made after the fact, as “buy-backs”.

3rd PILLAR (FISCA account/private pension provision) :

restrictions apply in the event of a leave of absence of one calendar year or more.

ACCIDENT INSURANCE :

This will no longer be valid 31 days after entitlement to at least half salary ceases. In the event of a prolonged period without pay, you may wish to advise the employee to take out “conventional” insurance, which extends the company’s accident insurance for up to six months.

SICKNESS BENEFIT INSURANCE :

You can also recommend that they extend their daily sickness benefit insurance accordingly.

SOCIAL SECURITY

The minijob threshold increases from €450 per month to €538 per month.

The transitional area between the minijob threshold and compulsory insurance increases from €450.01 to €850 per month to €538.01 to €2,000 per month.

Contribution assessment limits in social security also increase. In unemployment insurance, the contribution assessment limit increases from €82,500 per year to €85,200 per year. In health insurance, the contribution assessment limit for employees increases from €58,250 per year to €60,500 per year. In the pension insurance, the contribution assessment limit for employees increases from €82,500 per year to €85,200 per year and for self-employed persons from €71,500 per year to €74,400 per year.

INCOME TAX

The basic tax free income increases from €10,908 to €11,604.

The child tax free allowance increases from €3,192 to €3,350.

The marginal tax rates are increased by 6.3%. The top marginal tax rate of 42% is levied on taxable income of €66,761 or more.

IMPACT

The changes in social security and payroll tax have a positive impact on employees. By increasing the minijob threshold and the transitional area, more employees can benefit from insurance exemption. The increase in contribution assessment limits means that employees keep more of their income. The increase in the basic allowance and the child allowance leads to a lower tax burden.

Overall, the changes lead to a relief for employees.

A TRUE FLEXIBLE RETIREMENT: from 1 January 2024, the concept of retirement age will be replaced by that of reference age in Switzerland, offering a more flexible retirement with measures such as flexible receipt of pensions and anticipation of payment of pensions between the ages of 66 and 70.

HARMONISATION OF THE REFERENCE AGE FOR WOMEN AND MEN: the retirement age for women will be gradually increased from 64 to 65 as of Jan. 1st 2025, harmonising in 2028.

REFERENCE AGE FOR OCCUPATIONAL PROVISION (LPP-2E PILIER): the reference age for occupational provision will be aligned with that of the AVS, offering similar possibilities between the ages of 63 and 70, as well as partial retirement.

HOME OFFICE FOR BORDER WORKERS: for French border workers, up to 40% of their working time may be spent at home; for Italian border workers, up to 25% of their contractual working time may be spent working from home.

The Renaissance PME Investment Foundation has made a long-term commitment to the capital of ekspert SA. The founder, Tarek Almagbaly, will remain a shareholder in the company and will also continue to act as Chairman. Jean Bochud, who has been the company’s COO for the past two years, will take over as CEO. The Board of Directors will also be strengthened by Jean-Jacques Suter, former CEO of the Sage Group in Switzerland, as an independent member, and Xavier Paternot will represent the Renaissance Foundation. Renaissance is positioning itself alongside the management and all the teams to continue the successful development of the company. Customers must be able to continue to benefit from high quality services.

Tarek Almagbaly, founder of ekspert: « With its solid experience, Renaissance is the ideal partner for us. Its local focus guarantees the company, its employees, as well as its customers and suppliers, the security and stability they are looking for. We look forward to continuing the success of ekspert’s business together. » Tarek Almagbaly remains associated with the company as Chairman and shareholder.

Jean Bochud, CEO of ekspert: « We are delighted to be able to count on a solid and reliable partner to support the very significant growth that our company expects to see in the coming years, thanks to our customers’ strong desire for outsourcing. »

Xavier Paternot, Managing Partner of Renaissance: « Renaissance is delighted to have invested in ekspert. Since it was founded, ekspert has established itself as a key service provider for international companies and Swiss SMEs. Its focus, the high degree of automation of its operations and the exceptional know-how of its teams make it one of the market leaders. There are also significant opportunities for growth in the area of payroll, which more and more companies are looking to outsource to specialists. »

What is outsourcing?

Outsourcing is when a company calls on an external service provider to carry out certain operations directly or indirectly linked to its business. Literally, an “external source” of services. This concept should not be confused with subcontracting.

Being a supplier of outsourced services enables us to understand how this system works from the inside and to manage this method of collaboration as effectively as possible, both upstream and downstream.

Calling on experts

At Ekspert, we provide this type of service, but we also use it: our customers call on us to carry out their accounting and payroll management, and we delegate some of our internal tasks.

We currently outsource part of our IT department, including server administration, network administration and telephony. We also commission trusted external service providers to carry out some of our HR management and certain aspects of marketing.

To each his own!

By handing over part of their workload to specialists, our customers can devote themselves entirely to their core business with complete peace of mind: outsourcing allows companies to concentrate on their core business, in other words their main activity, without worrying about the ancillary tasks that are certainly necessary for the smooth running of the professional structure, but which are often complex and time-consuming.

But beware: a common mistake is to outsource a process that is causing a problem. Believing that outsourcing the problem will solve it is a recipe for disaster and guaranteed failure. It is essential to resolve the problem with the process before outsourcing it. Solving the problem also leads to a better understanding of the process, and therefore to its successful outsourcing.

Wanting to outsource a process must also mean wanting to build a long-term partnership with the service provider of your choice. And in this partnership, each player must take and keep responsibility for ensuring that things run smoothly.

Implementing a new payroll system is often the subject of a great deal of thought. It is commonly thought that you should wait until the beginning of the administrative year to make such a change. This is a preconceived idea. Find out from us why doing it during the year is both possible and, above all, advantageous.

First of all, the beginning and end of the year – busy administrative periods – rarely seem like good times to make major changes. Your HR department has enough on its plate. However, implementing a new payroll system requires time, precision and a lot of calculations. Choosing to make this transition during a quiet period, i.e. during the year, helps to make it efficient and satisfying. This more comfortable manoeuvre also has a significant technical advantage.

From a technical point of view, this involves recalculating salaries from the beginning of the year. At first sight this may seem tedious and redundant, but in reality it has a number of advantages. Firstly, reviewing previously established actions allows us to audit the set-up and calculations of the customer’s current service provider. It is also an opportunity to correct any misinterpretations by the current service provider of the customer’s payroll rules or the rules set out in a collective agreement; and to validate a new configuration of salary components based on actual production data. The adjustments made will then be directly adapted to meet your needs as closely as possible.

What’s more, implementing a new payroll system during the year allows you to gradually take over payroll management via our Abacus tool (with a few months of parallel payroll processing for our SaaS customers). Customers can also be reassured about the way we set up the payroll and accounting regulations, with mass entries or via third-party application interfaces. Comparing the old and new parameters allows us to validate the accuracy of the figures as well as detect any hypothetical errors in calculation. These can then be rectified immediately.

In conclusion, there are several advantages to changing your payroll system during the year. Firstly, it’s an excellent way of ensuring that no mistakes have been made to date. It also makes it possible to update the calculations so that they are as close as possible to the social security and tax contributions with annual bases and ceilings. The system will therefore certainly be correct for the end-of-year social security and tax returns. A word of advice, however: this exercise has many benefits up until the middle of the calendar year; after the summer it can become restrictive because of the workload and cost it generates.

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