Apr 2021

1

Customer Update: April 2021

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


Furlough Extension: How the Rules are Changing  

The furlough scheme has once again been extended, this time until the end of September 2021. The rules in relation to scheme eligibility, the levels of subsidy support, and the reference period used for newly eligible employees are all due to change between now and September. 


Introducing BrightPay’s New Integration with Clear Books, FreshBooks, QuickFile and Zoho  

We are delighted to announce our new API integration with even more accounting software solutions including Clear Books, FreshBooks, QuickFile and Zoho. This joins our growing list of Integration options created by us to ensure our customers save time and reduce the risk of errors. 


Coming Soon: Pay Employees Directly through BrightPay  

BrightPay’s new integration with Modulr will give you a fast, secure and easy way to pay employees through BrightPay. Processing payroll and paying employees shouldn’t be separate tasks and we have a solution! Coming next week.  

Upcoming Webinar Find out more

IR35 - Are you Ready?  

IR35 rules take effect 6th April. It is fast-approaching and recent studies found that 30% of businesses are unprepared despite organisations having had an additional year to prepare for the extension. Take action now with just under 1 week to go. 


Greener Supply Chain with BrightPay 

Here at BrightPay we take environmental responsibility very seriously and are committed to developing our business towards ecological sustainability at both a company and an individual level. Our new carbon efficient offices will open in 2021. Additionally, we are excited to announce our very ambitious sustainability campaign to become net zero by 2023. To achieve this, we have recently established a passionate Green Team to educate, promote and inspire sustainability to our employees and our loyal customers. Subscribe to BrightPay’s sustainability newsletter to follow our journey.

 

Posted byHolly McHughinCustomer Update


Mar 2021

4

Customer Update: March 2021

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


BrightPay 2021/22 is Now Available to Pre-Order  

BrightPay 2021/22 is scheduled for release the week commencing 22nd March. We will send you another email once it is released and ready to download.  

furlough extension

Top Tips for Migrating your Payroll to BrightPay  

In this webinar, we explore the benefits associated with switching to BrightPay. Plus, discover some top tips for making the transition to BrightPay as seamless as possible.  


Free Webinar | IR35 Reforms - Are you Ready?  

Discover how to comply with the upcoming changes to the off-payroll working rules, and how they will affect your business and payroll processes. Guest Speaker: Jas Jhooty, emTax  

furlough extension

Pay Employees Directly from BrightPay – Coming in BrightPay 21/22  

BrightPay’s new functionality will give you a fast, secure and easy way to pay employees through BrightPay. Eliminate the need to create bank files and the manual workload associated with making payments to employees.


Another Furlough Extension, Another Set of Changes 

The furlough scheme has been extended for a further five months until the end of September, with the scheme winding down from July. In this webinar, we look at how the scheme rules are going to change between now and September. 

furlough extension

New and Improved Multi-User Features are on the way  

We are introducing new multi-user features that work in conjunction with BrightPay Connect to improve the working from home experience, including an 'other users' check and a 'latest version' check.


Posted byRachel HynesinCustomer Update


Feb 2021

2

Customer Update: February 2021

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


How to spend less time on payroll & furlough 

In the past year, the role of the payroll processor has been made even more complex than ever before with furlough calculations and working from home. It’s now more important than ever before to automate payroll tasks. In this free webinar, we look at how integrated payroll and accounting systems can help reduce time wasted on manual work. Places are limited.


Are you ready for the changes to IR35? 

From April 2021, the rules in relation to off-payroll workers are due to change for contractors working with medium to large sized clients in the private sector. BrightPay will be able to cater for workers who are inside IR35.  


Coming in February: BrightPay Connect supports two-factor authentication sign in  

With two-factor authentication, you can add an extra layer of security to the employer login on your BrightPay Connect account in case your password is stolen. Instead of only entering a password to log in, you’ll also enter a code or use a security key.  

Find out more BrightPay Connect Demo

10 Benefits of using a Cloud Payroll Portal to Manage Employees Annual Leave  

COVID-19 has created many new challenges for organisations processing their employees’ annual leave entitlements. As more people are now working remotely, it is likely that organisations’ annual leave request methods are no longer adequate. Discover ten benefits of using BrightPay Connect to manage your staff’s annual leave. 


Switching to BrightPay: Free Migration Consultation

Book a demo today to avail of a free migration consultation with the BrightPay team. You will be assigned a dedicated account manager to help you through the setup process, ensuring a smooth transition to BrightPay. Don't delay - migration appointments are filling up fast! 


COVID-19 & the big shift to bringing payroll in-house to safeguard jobs  

The impact of COVID-19 has seen a growing shift towards businesses bringing their payroll in-house to save money and reduce the risk of employee redundancies. Register for our free webinar to discover the benefits that businesses can gain by making the switch to bringing their payroll in-house. 


Posted byRachel HynesinCustomer Update


Jan 2021

12

Customer Update: January 2021

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


Free Webinar: Optimising your payroll offering to improve profitability 

Many accountants would say that offering payroll as a service is not necessarily cost-effective and that it can be a very time-consuming process. But this doesn’t need to be the case. In this webinar, we explore various ways that accountants can automate payroll processes, and ultimately, become more profitable. 


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

During this webinar, BrightPay will discuss the benefits of integrating your payroll and accounting software. We will also demonstrate how you can streamline the entire process from start to finish. Discover how you can free up time for you to spend on other tasks that really need your attention.  


Why employees love self-service apps (And you should too!)  

Today’s employees are accustomed to having information readily available. An employee portal can help fulfil that expectation with the added benefit of creating workflow efficiencies. The employee self-service app eliminates the burden of sending payslips, updating personal information, approving annual leave requests and answering leave balance enquiries for the payroll department. 

Find out more

HMRC announce more furlough changes for 2021 

HMRC have set out the detail of how the CJRS will operate from 1st February onwards, including a further extension to 30th April 2021. Join us on 2nd February as we recap upcoming changes to the furlough scheme and what these changes mean for your business. Plus, we will share some of the key lessons learned from processing payroll in a pandemic, and how it prepares us for payroll in the ‘next normal’.


Key payroll changes to keep an eye on in 2021 

If 2020 has taught us anything it’s that you never know what’s around the corner. All the plans and predictions we made for this year fell through our fingers with the pandemic and global recession. Here we look at three things that are likely to happen in 2021 which those working in payroll need to keep an eye on. It’s always good to be prepared! 


Posted byRachel HynesinCustomer Update


Dec 2020

1

Customer Update: December 2020

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


Important HMRC update: Extended furlough scheme 

Still confused about the extended furlough scheme? Don’t worry, you’re not alone. In this webinar, we deep-dive into what you need to know about the extension of the Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme and what it now means for your business.


Is moving to the cloud the best way to manage compliance during COVID-19? 

Anyone involved in managing a payroll will acknowledge that compliance is one of their biggest challenges. COVID-19 has made this task even more difficult. The big question was, how do we maintain strict control over payroll data and processes while away from the office? With workforces now dispersed, here’s how BrightPay Connect can help you. 


Payroll & COVID-19: Growth and profit opportunities in challenging times 

Payroll bureaus are urged to plan and prepare for the upcoming challenges COVID-19 brings to their payroll services. Now is the time to plan and future-proof your payroll bureau for survival. This guide lifts the lid on how to safeguard your payroll services for profit and mitigate against upcoming COVID-19 scheme changes. 

Safeguard your payroll against COVID-19

COVID-19 and the challenge of pricing your payroll services

GoProposal and BrightPay discuss how to address the challenge that most accountants face, over-servicing and under-charging. We look at how technology will be key to the future profitability of your payroll service (and why clients should expect to pay for it). Learn how new automation turns daunting payroll tasks into smooth and profitable tasks. 


Furlough Extension: Full Guidance Published - Here’s a Recap

With the furlough scheme due to end back in October, and a replacement Job Support Scheme due to begin in November (and then promptly being cancelled again) you could be forgiven for being a little confused over the current status of the furlough scheme. Here we look at what the newly extended furlough scheme means for your business. 


Streamline Annual Leave Management this Christmas

It’s safe to say that Christmas is going to look very different for all of us this year. But the one thing that will remain the same is employees wanting time off over the holiday period. But don’t worry, we’re here to take the pain out of managing your employee leave this Christmas with BrightPay Connect. 


Posted byRachel HynesinCustomer Update


Nov 2020

3

Customer Update: November 2020

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


The Original Furlough Scheme is back: Who can claim? 

The Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme (CJRS) was due to come to an end on 31st October 2020. However, with further COVID-19 restrictions announced, the CJRS has been extended for another month until 30th November 2020. This also means that the introduction of the Job Support Scheme, which was due to start on 1st November 2020, has been postponed until December. 

Free Webinar

COVID-19 & achieving business continuity in the cloud 

In the ‘new normal’, employers and employees expect to access their payroll information in the cloud. Self-service online portals are changing the way businesses interact and communicate with their employees, whilst providing the cloud functionality to get things done smarter and faster. BrightPay Connect enables clients to submit employee hours, approve the payroll run, manage their employees’ leave, run payroll reports and much more.


Safeguard your payroll against COVID-19

In this guide, we look at how you can overcome payroll processing inefficiency in a crisis. Discover top tips to ensure COVID-19 does not slow down your bureau’s payroll processing and how you can respond quickly and effectively to avoid disruption in the future. 

Safeguard your payroll against COVID-19

Free webinars: HMRC updates, redundancy and safeguarding your payroll 

Join our payroll and HR experts in our upcoming webinar as they talk through a range of topics, including the extended CJRS, the Job Support Scheme, HMRC updates, redundancy, API integration with accounting software and safeguarding your payroll against COVID-19. Guest speakers include AccountsIQ & GoProposal. Limited places available.


Reduce payroll overheads to futureproof against the impact of COVID-19

As businesses look at creative ways to save jobs, many are moving to reduce their business overheads. Savvy businesses have already saved thousands by opting for a payroll provider that does not have an additional charge for auto enrolment, CIS or customer support. BrightPay is one of the most competitively priced payroll software on the market with no contract ties. Making simple changes and investing in payroll solutions with integrated cloud access can save money, improve productivity and increase profits.


Posted byRachel HynesinCustomer Update


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 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 has still not been released. But it will be soon.

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.

UPDATE (January 2021): WebView2 was released in November 2021, and we were able to integrate it into BrightPay and complete a successful pilot test run with some of our customers. I'm pleased to confirm that BrightPay 20.8 (now available for everybody) contains WebView2, and so should put an end to browser incompatibility problems for once and for all.

Posted byRoss WebsterinCustomer UpdateSoftware Upgrade


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


Sep 2020

1

Customer Update: September 2020

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


Furlough Changes for September 

The Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme is ending fully on 31st October 2020, but until then, the level of the grant will be reduced each month. For September, the government will pay 70% of wages up to a cap of £2,187.50 for the hours the employee does not work. Employers will need to pay employer National Insurance contributions and employer pension contributions plus 10% of wages to make up 80% of the total, up to a cap of £2,500. 


Free Webinar: CJRS & Flexible Furlough - Changes you need to know

As the government’s furlough scheme winds down in upcoming months, employers will need to contribute to employees’ wages and the Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme will end fully at the end of October 2020. In this webinar, we look at what you need to know about reduced government contributions, flexible furlough and making a claim. 


Benefits of employee apps that you never knew (and why employees love them)

BrightPay Connect offers a whole host of additional features, from automatic cloud backup to employee dashboards. However, the employee app is one of the most attractive of these additional features, and for good reason. It enables you to introduce more effective ways of communicating with employees and streamline everyday processes such as annual leave requests. 


Easily integrate BrightPay with your accounting software 

BrightPay’s payroll journal feature allows users to create wage journals from finalised pay periods so that they can be seamlessly transferred into various accounting packages. BrightPay includes direct API integration with a number of accounting packages. With this direct integration, users will be able to directly send the payroll journal to the accounting package from within BrightPay.  


Posted byRachel HynesinCustomer Update


Aug 2020

7

Customer Update: August 2020

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


BrightPay Connect - What’s New?

This month saw a number of updates to BrightPay Connect, including a new option to download all payslips in a given period. The calendar functionality in BrightPay Connect has also been updated and improved, making it more user-friendly and graphically appealing for both employers and employees. Improvements such as calendar and leave view, custom leave types and requesting leave are part of the new enhancements.


Free COVID-19 & Payroll Webinar

Join BrightPay on 12th August for a free COVID-19 & Payroll webinar. In this webinar, we explore the key changes in relation to flexible furlough, phasing out of the scheme and changes to making a claim. This new flexibility will help businesses with reopening and help boost the economy. Places are limited. Click here to book your place now.


Processing Employee Hours Made Simple With BrightPay Connect

We’re always keen to hear what the biggest challenges are for payroll bureaus and how we can help make their job easier. One of the most common issues we understand is that requesting payroll information from clients can be an inefficient, time-consuming and often, frustrating process. The good news is that BrightPay Connect makes this process so much simpler. It has become a must-have tool for bureaus who want to streamline their payroll process and increase efficiency.


Automate Annual Leave Management with BrightPay Connect

After months of lockdown, many people are embracing the idea of staycations in a bid to save what’s left of the summer. For employers, however, managing employee leave can be far from relaxing if it is a manual process. BrightPay Connect’s online leave management tools eliminate cumbersome people management tasks. It’s more than just payroll software, it’s a ready-to-go, easy-to-use HR software solution. The staycation trend should be a reason to be excited, not an admin nightmare.


Posted byRachel HynesinCustomer Update