New Feature: Bulk Assign Leave Policies

Happy new year! We hope that 2021 brings you new opportunities, improved performance and overall success in all your endeavours. As always, we’ll support you with an efficient and effective payroll system. We’re kicking off the new year with a brand new feature – you can now assign leave policies to employees in bulk.

SimplePay’s leave functionality allows you to set a company default leave policy for all employees that are added to the system. You can then assign a different leave policy to employees if they are not on the default policy. Being able to assign leave policies now in bulk saves you time if you have many employees who are not on the company default policy. It is also useful for companies who do not have a single company default policy, but rather separate policies per pay point or pay frequency.

Once you have created your leave policies, you can assign them in bulk as follows:

  • Go to Employees > Bulk Actions
  • Click on Entitlement Policies under the Leave heading
  • Use the filters to select only those employees that are part of a specific pay point or pay frequency
  • Use the drop-down menus to allocate the leave policies for each leave type for each employee on the page. If all employees on the page are on the same policy, use the Copy first value down option to save you time.
  • Click Save

It’s as simple as that. For more information on leave management and bulk leave actions, refer to the following pages:

Team SimplePay

Week 53 Guidance for Non-Monthly Salaried Employees

Week 53 payments apply to employees that you pay on a weekly, fortnightly or four-weekly basis and whose final pay date of the year falls on 30 or 31 December. They arise every five or six years, due to the fact that a standard year has 52 weeks and one (1) day. 

This year has a week 53 scenario, so to ensure that your employees get tax credits and deductions and so reduce the amount of tax they pay, we’ve made this blog post to guide you on the steps to follow.

Weekly / Fortnightly Employees Whose Pay Dates Don’t Fall on Friday, 1 January 2021.

By week 52 of the tax year, an employee taxed on the cumulative basis has exhausted his or her annual allowances, tax credits and rate bands. This means that if week 53 continued to be taxed in the same way, your employees would experience a drop in their take home pay.

To get around this, the submission for Week 53 needs to be done on a week 1 basis for your non-monthly paid employees.

To do this, all you need to do on SimplePay is:

  1. Ensure you have the correct / latest RPN or the relevant employees; and
  2. complete your submission to Revenue for the relevant period.

Your employees will receive additional amounts of tax credits and rate bands, proportional to their pay frequency to accommodate the extra submission (e.g. an increase of 1/52 the value of the credits and deductions is provided for weekly paid employees).

Weekly / Fortnightly Employees’ Whose Pay Date Falls on Friday, 1 January 2021.

You are normally required to report your employees’ pay to Revenue on or before their pay date. However, if you pay your non-monthly paid employees on a Friday, the week 53 pay date falls on Friday, 1 January 2021, which is a bank holiday. 

Where an employee’s pay date falls on a bank holiday you’re allowed to pay your employees on the previous working day (i.e. Thursday 31 December 2020). If this applies to some of your employees, you must do the following:

  1. Ensure you have the correct / latest RPN or the relevant employees;
  2. Record the pay date as 1 January 2021 and NOT 31 December 2020
  3. Complete your submission to Revenue for the relevant period.

SimplePay will use the RPN to calculate the amounts due, based on the 2021 credit rates and rate bands. Because this allows the use of 2021 rates, the payment falls in the 2021 tax year and so it is not a week 53 payment.

Reminder for 2021 Payroll Submissions

At the start of each year the RPNs from the previous year will expire, meaning that for us to calculate your employees’ tax liability, we need you to create / request a new RPN for the new year. The default until this has been completed is to process tax on the emergency basis, so we would strongly recommend you do this before making any payments or submissions for 2021.

As we like to make your life easy, SimplePay allows you to do this as one single bulk action. All you need to do is sign into your SimplePay profile and go to:

  • Employees > Bulk Actions > Update RPNs.
  • Use the checkboxes next to the employees’ names to select which employees you wish to request an RPN for.
  • Click Create / Update at the top of the screen.

That’s it, you’re then ready to complete your first pay run of 2021. Easy! More information on this can be found on our help site page, linked here

We hope that you have found the above information useful. If you have any questions on how the information above relates to SimplePay, please feel free to contact us at [email protected]

Equally, if you are not yet a client of SimplePay but would like to be, or if you’d like to know how we can take the effort out of filing and calculating payroll, get in contact with us or visit our website: www.simplepay.ie

Keep well and stay safe.

Team SimplePay

System Updates for PRSI Changes

As we prepare to enter a new tax year, we’d like to remind you that there is no need to do any manual changes to the system. Following the budget speech on 14 October, SimplePay has made updates on the back-end of the system for the change in PRSI income bands for those in class A. This means that you simply continue processing payroll as per normal. The SimplePay system will check your payslip dates and apply the correct band when determining PRSI contributions.

If you have already processed your payslips for 2021 in advance, there is a possibility that you finalised your payslips before the updates took place. If this is the case, we have sent out notifications to inform you that you need to unfinalise your payslips to unlock all calculations and then refinalise them with the correct PRSI figures.

The changes to the PRSI income bands for class A for weekly paid employees are highlighted below:

These changes have also been adjusted for employees who are paid fortnightly and monthly.

If you need any assistance, please do not hesitate to reach out to our Support team.

Team SimplePay

New Feature: Permanent Health Insurance

At SimplePay, we listen to our users. That’s why when you asked us to build functionality to accommodate the special tax requirements for permanent health insurance, that’s exactly what we did! In today’s post, we’ll provide a quick overview of permanent health insurance and show you how to add it to your employees’ payslips on SimplePay.

What is Permanent Health Insurance?

Permanent health insurance or permanent health benefit contributions are schemes which will continue to pay your employees’ income if they are absent due to illness or injury. Even better, using a Revenue approved scheme provider allows you to benefit from tax relief.

You can read more about the tax implications of these schemes on our help page here.

Adding Permanent Health Insurance to Payslips on SimplePay

When logged into SimplePay:

  •  Go to Employees and click on the name of an employee participating in the permanent health insurance scheme
  • Click on Add next to Regular Inputs
  • Select Permanent Health Insurance from the list of regular system items
  • From the Revenue Scheme drop-down menu, select whether the scheme you’re partaking in is “Approved” or “Unapproved”
  • Fill in the Employer Contribution and Employee Contribution fields
  • Click Save.

Easy as that! You should now be able to see the values you inserted under Regular Inputs, as shown below:

We hope that you have found the above information useful. If you have any questions on how the information above relates to SimplePay, please feel free to contact us at [email protected]

Equally, if you are not yet a client of SimplePay but would like to be, or if you’d like to know how we can take the effort out of filing and calculating payroll, get in contact with us or visit our website: www.simplepay.ie

Keep well and stay safe.

Team SimplePay

Level 5: Support for Businesses

As of midnight on 21 October, the whole of Ireland entered into level 5 of lockdown for a period of 6 weeks. Our blog post today looks into changes that have or are to be made to existing schemes, in order to help support your business and employees.

Employment Wage Support Scheme (EWSS)

The rate of subsidy for EWSS has been revised to help support your business under level 5. The EWSS rates are to be aligned with the PUP rates of payment. If your employees’ gross earnings were €400 or more per week prior to the pandemic, they will now receive €350.

These changes will be effective from the next payroll date, after 19 October 2020. For convenience we have attached the revised rates in the table below:

COVID-19 Restriction Support Scheme (CRSS)

The eligibility criteria for CRSS have been relaxed, meaning your company can qualify for it provided that your turnover is no more than 25% of the average weekly turnover for a period equal to the same number of weeks in 2019. New businesses will instead be required to use figures from 2020. If your business is affected by entering into level 5, this might provide you with a means of further relief, in addition to EWSS.

To qualify, your business must be operating from premises wholly located in a region which is subject to restrictions under the Government’s “Resilience and Recovery 2020: Plan for Living with Covid-19”.  As a result, you must be required to prohibit or restrict members of the public from entering your premises. Generally, restrictions apply at levels 3, 4 and 5, but your business might still qualify at lower levels, depending on your circumstances.

The support provided is as follows. Up to the first €20,000 of your company’s 2019 average weekly turnover, you will receive a 10% cash payment. If your business’s weekly turnover was greater than €20,000, any  amounts above this will accumulate additional payments at 5%, up to a maximum payment of €5,000 per week from the scheme. Therefore, to get the maximum amount, your business’s average weekly turnover in 2019 would need to be €80,000.

The scheme is due to run between 13 October 2020 and 31 March 2021, but Revenue is still in the process of adapting their systems for the scheme. Therefore the first payment under CRSS will be delayed until the CRSS system is live.

For more information on the CRSS, you can read the Government’s overview letter here.

Pandemic Unemployment Payment (PUP)

In relation to PUP, the Government has introduced a fourth bracket of payment. If your employee’s gross earnings were €400 or more per week prior to the pandemic, they will now receive €350 from their PUP payment. This aligns PUP with EWSS.

This change takes effect for all new applications received from 16 October 2020. All the other PUP brackets remain unchanged at €203, €250 and €300.

New applicants are being urged to apply online at MyWelfare.ie.

Sectors Exempted from Level 5 of Lockdown

If your business falls within one of the Government’s listed essential services or essential retailers, your business is permitted to continue operating under level 5.

The list of essential retailers can be found here.

The list of essential services can be found here

Please note that both these lists only apply to level 5 and may be changed if the lockdown level drops.

We hope that you have found the above information useful. If you have any questions on how the information above relates to SimplePay, please feel free to contact us at [email protected] 

Equally, if you are not yet a client of SimplePay but would like to be, or if you’d like to know how we can take the effort out of filing and calculating payroll, get in contact with us or visit our website: www.simplepay.ie

Keep well and stay safe.

Team SimplePay

Updated App: Version 2.0

As part of our vision to simplify and revolutionise payroll, we’ve focused on creating an enjoyable user experience and a payroll system that is easily accessible. The release of our mobile app in March this year meant that employees can now access their payroll from their phone at any time – they’re essentially carrying their payslips around with them wherever they go.

We’re happy to announce the release of Version 2.0 of the app, available to Android and iOS users. Version 2.0 includes more functionality which lets you:

  • Submit a leave request (employees)
  • View leave requests (employees and approvers)
  • Update leave requests with comments (employees and approvers)
  • Upload documents to leave requests (employees and approvers)
  • Approve or deny the request (approvers)
  • View leave balances (employees and approvers)

These updates to the app mean that processing leave is now even easier. Employees can log a sick leave request while in bed, or use their mobile phone to take photos of their medical certificate and upload it into the app. Approvers can then approve the request while sipping on their morning coffee.

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Not a SimplePay user but want your employees to have access to their payslips and leave from their phones? Unfortunately our app is only available to SimplePay users, but we offer a free 30-day trial for you to examine just how easy payroll can be with SimplePay. You can sign up for our trial here.

Team SimplePay

TWSS Reconciliation

Update 14 October 2020: Included clarification on which payslips are included in the TWSS Reconciliation CSV file.

The Temporary Wage Subsidy Scheme (TWSS) closed on 31 August 2020. Revenue will be conducting a reconciliation of the subsidy amounts refunded by Revenue to employers and the amounts of the subsidy that were paid to employees by employers to be completed.

The reconciliation will determine:

  • if any amount of the subsidy paid to the employer should be paid back to Revenue
  • if the company is entitled to receive additional payments from Revenue if they did not receive the full subsidy

The reconciliation will also allow Revenue to confirm the subsidy amount that was actually paid to employees so that Revenue can accurately calculate the Income Tax and USC liability for individuals that forms part of the End of Year review.

The reconciliation process consists of two phases:

Phase 1

The first phase in the reconciliation process is to submit a reconciliation report to Revenue by 31 October 2020. To do this:

  • Log into SimplePay, go to Reports and click on TWSS Reconcilation CSV – 2020. Please note that only payslips that meet the following criteria will be included in the report:
    • The payslip was submitted to ROS through SimplePay
    • The PRSI class for the employee was J9
    • The otherPayments COVID19 field was not included

Note: The OtherPayments field, introduced in mid April, enabled SimplePay to include the wage subsidy amounts in your submissions to Revenue (read more here). The TWSS Reconciliation CSV will not contain payslips submitted to Revenue after this field was introduced because these subsidy amounts have already been submitted to Revenue. The CSV provides Revenue with the wage subsidy amounts that were paid to employees that haven’t already been reported in your submissions to Revenue.

  • Then log into ROS to upload the CSV report. The steps for uploading the report is outlined in this Revenue document.

Phase 2

All active payslips submitted will be examined to determine the subsidy payable amount for each payslip based on the rules of the TWSS.

Following the completion of the stages, a Statement of Account will be sent to the employer’s ROS inbox.

If you have any questions about the Reconciliation Report, feel free to reach out to our Support team.

Team SimplePay

UI Tweaks for Profile Pages

We take our mission of simplifying payroll seriously! It’s why we believe that the small details matter. With that in mind, you may have noticed some slight changes to our user interface for profile pages, such as Companies, Billing and User Profile. These are the pages that you can access when clicking on the profile icon. 

We’ve made these changes so that you can more easily identify when you are working on your profile as opposed to within a specific company, eliminating any confusion around whether your changes will apply at a company or profile level. 

When working in a specific company, you’ll see the usual interface that you have come to know. When working on one of the profile pages, you’ll now see the following changes:

  • In the top left corner, you’ll now see the G-ref number for your profile or the page name, depending on which page you are on. The top bar has also changed to a darker colour to make it clear that you are working on the profile as a whole and not on a specific company.
  • The sidebar menu for the company that you were working in no longer appears. To return to the company, click on the link that says “Go back to <company name>” that appears in the top left corner next to the G-reference number of page name.

We hope you enjoy this small, but useful change to your user experience.

Not a SimplePay client but want a payroll software provider that cares about your experience? SimplePay offers a free 30-day trial that allows you to see just how easy your payroll experience can be. You can sign up here.

Team SimplePay

New System Items for Salary Sacrifices

Providing employees with bicycles as part of the Bike-to-Work scheme or travel passes for commuting to work can be great ways to offer tax-free benefits to employees while also encouraging more sustainable travel solutions. You may wish to recoup some or all of the costs associated with these benefits by offering employees a salary sacrifice. Our new system items simplify the process of correctly recording and reporting these salary sacrifices.

These new system items are set up to automatically reduce the gross pay that is reported to Revenue by the amount of the salary sacrifice for the period. The reduced gross pay also means that the salary sacrifice for the period correctly reduces the PAYE, USC and PRSI automatically calculated by the system, without you needing to manually set up a custom item for this.

The Bike to Work – Salary Sacrifice system item allows you to spread the salary sacrifice over multiple pay periods, since these are usually large once-off purchases. You can record the total value of the benefit that needs to be recouped through a salary sacrifice and how much of this will be recouped on each payslip. The system will then automatically keep track of the balance that still needs to be recouped in forthcoming pay periods.

For information on how to use these system items, refer to the following help pages:

More information on the concepts of Bike to Work, travel passes and salary sacrifices can be found in the following articles:

We hope these new system items make your payroll processing even easier.

Not a SimplePay client but want an easy-to-use payroll software solution that is tailored to Irish payroll legislation? We offer a free 30-day trial that allows you to see just how simple payroll processing can be. You can learn more and sign up here.

Team SimplePay

EWSS Sweepback Process

As you are no doubt aware, the Temporary Wage Subsidy Scheme (TWSS) came to a conclusion on 31 August, and has been replaced by the Employment Wage Subsidy Scheme (EWSS). If you are not familiar with EWSS, you can read about it on our help page. Some of your employees may not have been eligible for TWSS, adding to your financial burden. To make sure that support in relation to such employees doesn’t fall through the cracks, Revenue has implemented the July / August EWSS sweepback (the sweepback).

Under the sweepback, eligible employers can backdate a claim for EWSS to 1 July for the relevant eligible employees. This is allowed under the following circumstances:

  • The employer was not eligible for TWSS; or
  • The employer had employees ineligible for TWSS.

How to Apply

If you want to apply for the sweepback, you need to fill in this Sweepback CSV Template and submit it on ROS when this facility becomes available on 15 September 2020. All applications for the sweepback must be submitted before 14 October 2020 through ROS to be considered.

Revenue has released this handy guidance document for the sweepback process covering eligibility, how to apply, how to fill in the CSV as well as how to upload it to ROS. 

EWSS Claims from September Onwards

As we love making your payroll a doddle, for the wider EWSS scheme we have created a new EWSS system item. If you as a company and some or all of your employees qualify for EWSS, the relevant employees should have the EWSS item added for the months that they qualify from September onwards. This has no effect on the payslip or calculations, but will inform Revenue of the relevant amounts due. You can read more about this in our previous blog post from 31 August.

Not a SimplePay client? Our self-service portal allows employees to view payslips and tax certificates, update their personal information and submit leave and claims for payslip items. It’s one of the many features that makes payroll with SimplePay so easy. Not convinced? We offer a free 30 day trial that lets you try out our system to see if it suits your payroll needs. You can sign up for the trial here.

Team SimplePay