Oct 2020

28

BrightPay wins Best Payroll Software of 2020 by Digital.com

Digital.com has added BrightPay to its list of best payroll software of 2020. The top 20 solutions were selected based on basic payroll functions, reporting, and additional features. 


 

BrightPay and other companies were required to offer essential functions such as supporting all RTI submission types, full automatic enrolment functionality and HMRC recognised.

It was also necessary for the payroll software to offer additional features such as payroll journal integration and the ability to batch process multiple employers at the same time.

Digital.com’s research team conducted a 40-hour assessment of over 210 payroll software companies across the web.

Digital.com reviews and compares the best products, services, and software for running or growing a small business website or online shop. The platform collects twitter comments and uses sentiment analysis to score companies and their products.


Payroll Software you can trust…

The award comes just one year after BrightPay was announced as the winner of ‘Payroll Software of the Year’ 2019 at the ICB Luca Awards. This also follows BrightPay winning Payroll Software of the Year 2018 at the AccountingWEB Software Excellence Awards.

With over 25 years of payroll experience, our products are used to process the payroll for over 250,000 businesses across the UK and Ireland. BrightPay also has an impressive 99% customer satisfaction rate and a 5-star rating on Software Advice.

BrightPay for SMEs

BrightPay includes several useful payroll features and support that are very beneficial for employers:

  • Since COVID-19 started impacting life as we know it, BrightPay introduced a comprehensive payroll response plan which to date includes 34 webinars, with over 26,000 attendees and released 15 software upgrades to automate the new scheme calculations.
  • This year we introduced payroll journal API integration with a number of new accounting packages. This allows users to send the payroll journal directly to their accounting software from within BrightPay. BrightPay currently has direct integration with AccountsIQ, FreeAgent, KashFlow, Twinfield, Sage One, Quickbooks Online and Xero with many more currently in development.
  • With BrightPay Connect, we have also launched the employer payroll dashboard which gives an overview of the payroll information in one place. It also automatically backs up your payroll file every 15 minutes when open and again when the payroll file is closed.

These are just a few of the many features we have in BrightPay that can help SMEs, but there’s so much more on offer.

See how BrightPay can help your business

Don’t miss out - book a payroll demo today to see these features in action and to discover more ways that BrightPay’s award-winning software can improve efficiency and save you time.

Thanks again to Digital.com for the award and all our customers supporting us during this challenging period.

Related articles:

Blog: BrightPay wins ‘Payroll Software of the Year 2019'
Blog: BrightPay wins ‘Payroll Software Product of the Year’
Digital.com: The Best Payroll Software of 2020 - BrightPay

 

Posted byZoe ColverinAwardsPayrollPayroll Software


Oct 2020

26

Solving the recent "blank screen" issue with BrightPay's Quickbooks integration.

BrightPay is built on a technology called WPF, which is part of Microsoft’s very popular .NET Framework. For .NET development on Windows, WPF has been the first-choice framework for over a decade, and is still very much going strong.

From its beginnings, WPF has included the ability to display and interact with web-based content in a special user interface component called WebBrowser. BrightPay uses WebBrowser to display the “log in” web pages that are required for certain API integrations (e.g. when submitting pension contributions or posting payroll journals to certain providers). WebBrowser has worked well, but it has one aspect that is beginning to cause problems.

WebBrowser is based on Microsoft’s Internet Explorer browser, which has an end-of-life support date of 21 August 2021, meaning that from then on it will no longer receive security updates. Apart from that, Internet Explorer lacks support for many modern technologies, and the web development community has been cheering on its deprecation for years.

In September 2020, BrightPay customers started to notice that our integration with QuickBooks (for posting payroll journals) is no longer working – the log in process results in a blank screen. This is happening because Intuit (the creators of Quickbooks) have dropped their support for Internet Explorer – they are now using technology that is simply too modern for Internet Explorer (and therefore's BrightPay's use of WebBrowser) to handle. In the coming months and years, one by one, many other cloud-based software providers will no doubt be doing the same.

So where does this leave BrightPay? Well, you might be aware that in 2015, Microsoft released the first version of their successor to Internet Explorer: the Edge browser. It wasn’t until 2019 that a WPF component for using Edge in Windows applications was made available. This component, called WebView, is not perfect, however, and comes with some technological shortcomings that made us decide to not adopt it right away.

Despite the shortcomings with WebView, when Intuit made their announcement that they would not support Internet Explorer anymore, we created a version of BrightPay that uses WebView and began testing it internally. But not long after, Intuit revised their announcement, confirming that they would not be supporting the Edge browser either. This left us in a bit of a quandary.

Earlier this year, Microsoft released a new version of Edge, based on the same technology that powers the Google Chrome browser. Although it has the same name as the Edge browser from 2015, it is completely different (and Intuit have confirmed that the new Edge will be supported by Quickbooks). Microsoft have also since announced that they will be releasing a component to allow WPF applications to use the new Edge browser, called WebView2, in Q4 2020. This is a much better component than WebView, with wider support, less restrictions and improved deployment. It’s the obvious solution to our Quickbooks problem, except that at the time of writing this, it’s still not available. But it will be soon enough.

And so, our only real choice is to wait until the WebView2 component is available. As soon as it is, we will prioritise its integration. When that's done, BrightPay customers who need to post journals to Quickbooks should no longer have any issues.

In the meantime, BrightPay version 20.6 contains the WebView component (based on the legacy Edge browser), as we have found that despite Intuit’s claim to not support legacy Edge, it seems to still work for posting journals to Quickbooks anyway. Hopefully, it will continue to do so until WebView2 is available.

Please note that to use WebView in BrightPay 20.6, you (i) must have Windows 10 version 1803 or higher and (ii) you must not run BrightPay in administrator mode. Otherwise, BrightPay will fall back to using the Internet Explorer-based WebBrowser, and the Quickbooks integration will not work. Also, to be able to support WebView (and in preparation for supporting WebView2), BrightPay now requires the .NET Framework version 4.7.2 or higher. If your computer does not already have this version, you will need to download and install it manually to be able to continue using BrightPay.

NOTE: BrightPay for Mac users are not affected by any of this.

Posted byRoss WebsterinCustomer UpdateSoftware Upgrade


Oct 2020

22

BrightPay announces API integration with AccountsIQ

Processing the payroll for your client’s employees and calculating payroll taxes accurately and on time are two of the most important tasks for payroll bureaus and accountants. That's why we have created this new webinar:

Payroll in the Connect Era: How integration has transformed the world of payroll

Thursday 5th November 11am

What you'll learn:

  • The Importance of Automation
  • What is Payroll Journal Integration?
  • How BrightPay’s Accounts Software Integration can help
  • The Benefits of Integrated Payroll & Accounting Systems
  • API Integration in BrightPay

Register Now

Tracking payroll figures in accounting systems is also equally important. In the past adding payroll journals was a manual process of exporting a CSV file from the payroll software, mapping the nominal codes and uploading them into AccountsIQ.

Without API integration between payroll and accounting systems, payroll journal information would need to be entered manually into the accounting system, which can result in errors and duplication of efforts. You may also need to make journal entries to fix mistakes. In order for this information to be included in financial statements efficiently, the payroll and accounting system should ideally be integrated through an API facility.

Payroll and accounting integration between BrightPay and AccountsIQ is a critical part of the payroll reporting process. BrightPay have now added an API payroll journal feature allowing users to create wage journals from finalised pay periods so that they can be added into AccountsIQ.

How the BrightPay & AccountsIQ integration works

BrightPay produces the payroll journal in a file format that is unique to AccountsIQ allowing users to easily upload their payroll figures into their general ledger in just a few clicks.

Once you have entered your AccountsIQ login credentials, BrightPay will automatically retrieve your nominal ledger accounts so that you can easily map each payroll data item to the relevant nominal account. The nominal ledger mapping is then saved for an even speedier process going forward. The payroll journal can include records for payslips across multiple pay frequencies. Users then have the option to include individual records for each employee or merge the records for each unique date. A nominal account can be used for multiple items. 

What are the benefits of BrightPay’s API integration with AccountsIQ

 Some accounting programs come with payroll modules that are fully integrated from the outset. However, the payroll module can be expensive, outdated or/and lack basic automation features. BrightPay and AccountsIQ are multi-award winning software systems that increase efficiency, avoid duplication of efforts and reduce the possibility of manual processing errors. The accuracy and automation of this wage journal API will help to ensure that your books and your payroll journal match up. This can be a critical part of both payroll and accounting.

Webinar: Payroll in the Connect Era: How integration has transformed the world of payroll

To find out more about how you could benefit from the BrightPay and AccountsIQ integration register for the webinar now. 

Thursday 5th November - 11am

Register Now

In today’s technology-driven world, how well a business performs – whether it succeeds or fails – is increasingly dependent on how well it connects applications and integrates systems. That’s why BrightPay and AccountsIQ have teamed up, making it easier to keep your payroll and accounting systems aligned. Join BrightPay & AccountsIQ on Thursday 5th November to discover how you can streamline your payroll and accounting processes. Register today.

Related articles:

Step by step guide to BrightPay & AccountsIQ integration
Find out more about the BrightPay & AccountsIQ integration
Press Release: Accounts IQ partners with BrightPay

 

Posted byKaren BennettinAccounts SoftwareBookkeepingPayrollPayroll Software


Oct 2020

15

Pros and Cons: The New Job Support Scheme

Before diving into the positives and negatives of the new Job Support Scheme I want to recap on what it is. 

What is the Job Support Scheme?

The new Job Support Scheme was announced by the government in September, and it'is designed to top up the wages of employees unable to work full-time because of coronavirus restrictions over the winter. Employers using the Job Support Scheme will also be able to claim the Job Retention Bonus if they meet the eligibility criteria.

Businesses will continue to pay their employees for time worked, but the burden of hours not worked will be split between the employer, the Government (through wage support) and the employee (through a wage reduction), and the employee will keep their job.

The scheme was originally set to open on 1 November 2020 and run for 6 months, until April 2021.  However, the start of a second England-wide lockdown has prompted the Government to extend the original furlough scheme until December – pushing back the start date for the Job Support Scheme.

 

Main Pros for the Job Support Scheme

This scheme is designed to protect jobs where businesses are facing lower demand over the winter months due to coronavirus. 9.6 million employees are still on furlough leave across the UK, with the scheme still supporting 1.2 million businesses. This new scheme could help mitigate the impact of the end of Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme ending on 31st October.

Employers can receive up to £697.92 per month wage top up of eligible employees unable to work full-time because of coronavirus restrictions over the winter.

An unexpected silver lining to the scheme is that employers using the Job Support Scheme will also be able to claim the Job Retention Bonus if they meet the eligibility criteria. This is a one-off payment of £1,000 to employers who have availed of the CJRS for each furloughed employee who remains continuously employed until 31‌‌‌ ‌January 2021.

Main cons of the Job Support Scheme

It’s far less generous than the current Job Retention Scheme - The Government contribution will be capped at £697.92 a month compared to the initial £2,500 plus associated Employers’ National Insurance and pension contribution under the Job Retention Scheme placing a greater responsibility on the employer to fund employment costs. In fact, under the scheme the government never pays more than 22% of the employees' overall salary.

The employer ends up paying more in wages than the hours they get in return - The percentage cost to the employer far outweighs the percentage of productive hours provided by that employee to the business and a stark reality is that it costs more than 50% more to employ several people working 40% of the time compared to fewer people working full time.

Employees cannot be made redundant or put on notice of redundancy during the period within which their employer is claiming the grant for that employee. Therefore, employers face the dilemma now of assessing demand for the forthcoming months for their business and making decisions about the number of employees required.

Job Support Scheme payments will be made monthly in arrears commencing in December, reimbursing the employer for the government’s contribution. The grant will not cover employer NICs or pension contributions, but these contributions will remain payable by the employer. This means that the overall cost of employment for employers is higher than simply their contribution to employee salaries.

Sadly, it does not appear that the Job Support Scheme will avoid a rise of redundancies over the coming months as employers seek to manage their cashflows to survive the winter months. Join our latest webinar to find out more about the New Job Support Scheme and whether it’s right for your organisation.

Webinar: New Job Support Scheme Explained
18th November – 10.30am

Register Now

In this webinar, we look at what you need to know about the new Job Support Scheme, including which employees are eligible, the level of government funding, and how the scheme is actioned through payroll. We will also explore the rise in redundancies and the new changes regarding statutory redundancy and notice pay for furloughed employees. 

What you'll learn:

  • What the extended CJRS means for your business
  • Everything you need to know about the Job Support Scheme
  • Tips for safeguarding your payroll
  • How BrightPay’s Job Support Scheme Calculator & Claim Report works
  • How to calculate notice pay and redundancy pay for furloughed employees
  • Top tips to ensure COVID-19 does not slow down payroll processing

Register Now

Related articles:

BrightPay Covid-19 Resources Hub
Webinar: CJRS Changes & Flexible Furlough - What you need to know
HMRC set to crack down on furlough fraud

Posted byZoe ColverinCoronavirusPayrollPayroll Software


Oct 2020

1

Customer Update: October 2020

Welcome to BrightPay's October update. Our most important news this month include:


CJRS is ending! What's in store for the months ahead?

Note: the new Job Support Scheme that was due to commence on 1 November 2020. However, the start of a second England-wide lockdown has prompted the Government to extend the existing furlough scheme until December – pushing back the start date for the Job Support Scheme

What’s in store for employers over the coming months as the Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme ends? Join us for a free webinar where we examine key concerns:

  • What is the NEW Job Support Scheme?
  • Can you avail of the Job Retention Bonus?
  • What are the rules in relation to redundancies?
  • Will remote working remain beyond 2020?
Free Webinar

BrightPay’s Customer Satisfaction Survey – The results are in!

At BrightPay, we take customer satisfaction very seriously. We regularly carry out customer surveys to make sure our customers are satisfied with their BrightPay experience. These surveys provide invaluable information regarding what our customers want and need, and what we need to work on moving forward. We’ve compiled the results of our latest survey and we wanted to share them with you.


Furlough Changes for October

In October, the government will pay 60% of wages up to a cap of £1,875 for the hours the employee does not work. Employers will need to pay employer NI contributions and employer pension contributions plus 20% of wages to make up 80% of the total, up to a cap of £2,500. After 31st October, the government contributions will finish, and the scheme will come to an end. The new Job Support Scheme will start in November to top up the wages of employees unable to work full-time because of coronavirus restrictions over the winter.


What’s not to LOVE about BrightPay’s integration with FreeAgent

Together with FreeAgent, we’ve built a meaningful API integration to make payroll refreshingly easy while keeping your accounting simple. BrightPay produces the payroll journal in a file format that is unique to FreeAgent. Users can easily upload their payroll figures into their general ledger from within BrightPay using the FreeAgent API facility.

BrightPay & FreeAgent

Redundancy and Notice Pay for Furloughed Employees

With the end of the Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme fast approaching, more employers are having to consider the issue of redundancies. New regulations which came into effect on 31 July 2020 have changed the way in which statutory redundancy and notice pay must be calculated in respect of employees who have been furloughed. If a worker loses their job and is entitled to redundancy pay, this should be calculated based on their pre-furlough wages. Firms cannot use the money from furlough to subsidise redundancy packages.


Posted byRachel HynesinCustomer Update