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HR data entry can be a pain, especially when you have ByD as your main HR system and an external payroll provider that requires the same HR data (and compensation and tax data). Find out below how I eliminated double entry at Pinkberry and made the payroll process more streamlined and efficient:

The Payroll Processing Work Center produces a file (or multiple files in FP2.6 and above), containing any HR data changes, vacation and sick deductions, employee time worked, and all things related to the Personnel Administration, Time Administration, and Compensation Work Centers, for each pay period. Yet most customers don’t’ know about or don’t use this functionality, and the value they can get from the file(s) produced.

You can use this file, which is now configurable in an easy Excel format, to send to your payroll provider. This way you can enter all employee changes in ByD and never have to do double entry in your payroll provider’s system again. It’s sweet.

I implemented this Work Center about a year ago. The ByD part is easy. All you have to do is implement the Compensation and Payroll Process Work Centers, then follow a series of steps to to produce a file containing employee data changes since the last pay period.

(Okay, maybe I kind of glossed over the implementation of those two work centers, but mayb that’s antother blog post.)

Unfortunately, back in the FP2.0 days when I developed the interface to Paychex (our provider), only an XML file was available with the change data. Now you can specify what data you want and how you want it presented, and get all that in a nice Excel file.

Not having that option, I chose to build a custom SQL Server database, with temporary, staging, configuration, and cross-reference tables, along with some stored procedures to ‘shred’ the XML file to get to the employee data. Finally, I built a process that translates the ByD data into the values that Paychex expects, and writes to a series of text files that require a specific format, length, and position for each data point. Phwew! Then we just load the files into Paychex and we’re all done. No more double entry. 

While this process seems complicated, it’s not. It’s only a few steps:

  1. In ByD, create employee data snapshot for the pay period
  2. In ByD, generate the data file and download it
  3. In SQL Server, run one job that does what I described above (if you have that capability. If you don’t maybe I can help.)
  4. In Paychex, load the completed files.

The interim process is transparent to the user. I wouldn’t want to scare them with all that SQL scripting.

The moral of this story is, you can manage your HR processes and data in ByD, and forget about entering all those changes at your payroll provider. When you have 400+ employees with a lot of turnover, it makes a big difference.

Want more detail or want to do this at your company? I may be able to give you some tips!

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8 Comments

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  1. Jarret Pazahanick
    Great to see a ByD article from a payroll perspective as it is the first I have seen on SCN.

    Just curious if you believe there is an opportunity for improvement from SAP in a future release as your process might not be intuitive for other customers.

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    1. Judson Wickham Post author
      Oh, of course.

      A) Either make the output from Payroll pProcessing easily and fully configurable.
      B) Let partners provide an extension to the WoC that translates the info to the format the provider needs
      c) Have a partner do (A)

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      1. Judson Wickham Post author
        Of course there is also option C:

        – Contract me to come in for a weeked, install SQL Server and SSIS, and write the interface for your provider.

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  2. Greg Chase
    Hi Judson,
    This is an excellent blog, thank you for sharing your practical expertise. I know the many new customers that are coming into ByDesign will appreciate more insight such as that.

    Regards,

    -Greg

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  3. Andreas Eissmann
    Hi Judson,

    great blog about payroll process and your experience with.

    I had a call two weeks ago with some developers of the payroll process aksing me for feedback. I told them from my point of view the process is a little bit strange cause the customer need payroll process skills to insert the data in ByDesign correctly but he can`t finish the process in the system, he always need an external system (e.g. in germany “DATEV”) or a payroll provider for.

    Whats your mention about this? Do you think, it makes sense if SAP would offer an integrated solution? Or do you think the current process is ok?

    I`m very interesting of hearing your mention about cause most of our customers want an integrated solution and SAP says they have no ambition to implement an integrated solution in future.

    Best regards,
    Andreas

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    1. Judson Wickham Post author
      Really sorry about replying to this so late.

      I think that from the perspective of most SME’s, an external payroll provider is the way to go. There are so many laws and complexities in payroll that must be constantly updated, and I think the external vendors specialize in that and do it well. From that perspective I don’t see SAP needing to go that route.

      However, there’s no reason a partner couldn’t deliver this service as an add-on, or at least a configurable integration as an add-on. This is what I see happening.

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