Life as a Payroll Executive

Posted: Dec 14, 2020

At HURST our team help you manage the financial and operational side of your business – allowing you to focus on the important day-to-day business activities. Our range of services include bookkeeping, payroll, VAT compliance, management accounting, and, for some clients, the full outsourcing of their financial record-keeping. We thought we’d give you an idea of what life is like as part of the team, we asked one of them about their journey.

We asked Ant Worden, Payroll Executive a few questions about why he joined and what it’s like to work as part of our Payroll team.

How did your HURST journey begin?

I was working at a different firm within a very small payroll department, with extremely dated processes. I was always qualified in and passionate about payroll but wanted an opportunity where I could work with a bigger quantity of clients utilising modern technology and processes. I was advised by more than one Recruitment Specialist to try HURST due to their great reputation.

Sadly, all vacancies were filled at the time but in February 2019 I was asked to interview on my Birthday. Being offered the job is up there with some of the greatest Birthday moments I have experienced!

How were you supported when you started your new role?

In terms of payroll, I was supported by my brilliant team by observing each of them work individually, and how they navigated the Department’s specific processes for my first week. Then I was coached by each of them whilst I picked up a few of their clients until I was able to work independently with my own client portfolio.

Luckily, I was already trained in the payroll software, so with some of the team on annual leave and maternity leave I was able to really sink my teeth into the work and hit the ground running.

Culturally, I met with a variety of different staff members at various levels in my first Induction week – including a coffee with our MD Tim, which helped put me straight at ease getting to know a few friendly faces.

What’s a day in the life of a HURST payroll team member like?

Busy! It can vary depending on the timing of the month and my client’s pay dates. Generally, though it will be utilising our digital Payroll Bureau Management System to see any expected workloads for the upcoming days. Responding to any payroll queries from our clients, seeking out any outstanding work and processing/reconciling/finalising any payrolls to ensure that our client’s work force get paid correctly and also on time. This includes making the necessary BACS transactions for our clients too. Once our client’s pay dates have been met for the month it gives us time to process any admin work that will need doing, this can include pension administration and furlough reclaims.

What do you enjoy the most about your role?

For me there is no better feeling than waking up and realising it is PAYDAY…and I get to make that happen for countless employees across Greater Manchester and the rest of the UK.

What 3 qualities do you think someone needs to have if they are to be successful at HURST?

Organisation is essential, not just in my department but for all of HURSR, operations run like clockwork in my department if you keep up to date with everything.

Empathy is another. As we always say, “we are not like any other Accountants” our clients are real people often facing real problems - not just professionally but also sometimes personally. Being empathetic is a must.

Finally, Teamwork. Particularly in payroll. We have constant communication and support between our team, which is essentially in sharing new knowledge, queries and the ever-changing processes and legislation presented to us. Also, as we are real people and not robots, we have a genuine camaraderie looking out for each other and working together to tackle problems.

Do you have any advice for those interested in applying to join the team?

If there aren’t any current vacancies or opportunities – keep trying! If you wish to pursue a payroll opportunity but have no current payroll qualifications, look into the courses offered by the Chartered Institute of Payroll Professionals.

If you are interested in applying to join our team you can find out more by visiting our HURST careers page.