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Paying employees correctly and on time is very important especially for company goodwill and to ensure that employees are not adversely affected as they may have crucial mortgage payments, loan payments etc. due around the time of their pay dates. Best practice would be to ensure that adequate time is given to prepare payroll. The higher the headcount of employees and the more complicated the salary calculation, the more time will be required for preparation. HR and the Accounting department should be working closely in this process and schedule reminders in their calendars to ensure deadlines are met. They should also be working closely to resolve any queries or discrepancies.
To ensure strong controls in this process, the HR department should ideally be preparing the payroll with the Head of HR approving it. This would then flow to the Accounting department who would then review and check the calculations and prepare payment. Prior to payment the Accounting Head would review the final calculation and authorize payment.
Very useful post!