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Need your thoughts

edited February 2009 in Stupid Questions
So, when I opened my email this morning, one of our Vice Presidents wanted to know if it would be better to switch from a suite of sites from Ceridian to Quickbooks or Peachtree. He even suggested using local banks for payroll processing. We are a company of over 250, operating in four states and I am the only one in HR/Payroll/benefits. We started out with ADP in the late 70's and never looked back. Our employee reimbursements are through them, time cards, pay stubs, biometric time clock, and even our W-2's are online through them. My question is, am I unreasonable for thinking that this a regression and how do I explain it without being too brash?


  • I have to laugh at your dilemma but not because it's funny, (it is :)) but because I went thru almost the exact same thing.

    I, like you, am a 1 stop HR shop for 100 employees in 30 states in the US. When I took this position, the first thing I did was streamline and consolidate the benefits package to offer 1 medical plan to all employees (previously there were 8 separate plans based out of the main states we have offices in). It was a welcomed breath of fresh air to have 1 package to memorize and administer.

    This year while going thru the renewal period - we, like most employers - were faced with yet another large premium hike. When discussing this with my CFO, he suggested we go back to administering 8 different plans because we can get local coverage cheaper in each state as opposed to running a national plan. I was agast! I couldn't believe it.

    The brash side of me wanted to reach thru the phone to California and strangle him with the cord, while the logical side is asking how do I say this tactfully without getting fired.

    So I started along the route that the time it takes to administer all those plans is astronomical and I simply dont have the time to do it. His response was that we could hire an admin asst for <$30k a year to admin the plans especially if the change would save us 100k$ or more.

    My next step was a little more brash but won the argument - at least for this year. Offering 8 different plans that offer 8 different sets of benefits to the employee is a discrimination case waiting to happen and that $100k you just saved, you will blow on legal fees and you will lose your case and ulitmately have to revert back to the National PPO we are on right now. It hit a sour spot with him because we already were going thru a RIF and had a discrim claim on the table as part of it.

    So I guess it doesn't entirely answer your question, but I have come to find that executives who have never lived and breathed HR day to day will never fully understand the impact of a decision like this because all they see if the bottom line, not the day to day work. Best I can offer is think outside the box and try to communicate in terms he/she will understand because at the end of the day if you can show that by making this decision it will adversely affect your companies bottom line, you will win the arguement every time.

    Good luck!!
  • I noticed that the local bank now does payroll processing - I'm not sure they are expert in payroll - And with the issues that members of the board have with PSP's I'm not sure why the local bank would provide better service - my guess is that the local bank doesn't actually do payroll but that they contract out to one of the major players - And, I would guess that the service is primarily for really small businesses - 100 or 250 employees sounds to me like more than the 1-10 employees I envisioned when I saw the signs up at the branch.
  • I'm sure they do, Patrick. This was much bigger decades ago.

    In the late 70's (oh, shut up, everybody :P ), I worked for a company that was the payroll service for 5 different banks in California. The customers all knew it as Crocker Bank system or Mexican-American Bank system, but it was really us and we weren't any of the five.
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