Construction Best Practices

6 Tips for Untangling Your Construction Payroll Processes


Tips to Help Your Construction Organization Overcome Common Construction Payroll Challenges

Construction Payroll Process

Staying on top of construction payroll with today’s complex projects—from dozens to thousands of workers to manage—can be a daunting challenge for even the most seasoned accounting and payroll professionals.

  • A revolving door of skilled laborers and other construction professionals that need to be paid on time
  • Special union requirements and certified payroll to contend with
  • Workers and projects spread out across various regions, states and municipalities—each with their own specific tax rates and rules
  • A mix of paper and electronic processes to collect employee time and data and distribute wages

Even with these challenges, believe it or not, there are a few aces in the deck. Here are a handful of ways to make your construction payroll process easier:

Construction Payroll Software
Using construction specific software can help streamline common payroll challenges.

1. Be Transparent: Clear Communication Improves Construction Payroll Processes

Establish—and make it easy for your employees to access—sound policies for wages and taxes, paid time off and sick leave, wage garnishments, union dues, health benefits and other deductions to avoid confusion during the payroll process. This also establishes trust, provides a clear direction and creates a better relationship between employees and your human resources department. The more employees know, the easier it will be to reference rules and regulations and the amount of back and forth email will be reduced. Also, if workers trust their employer, they are likely to stick around for the long haul.

Smoother payroll processes means happier employees which increases the chances of retaining the good ones—especially important amid the Construction Labor Shortage and modern-day business disruptions.

Mobile for Construction Payroll
Empower your team to use a mobile solution to capture time and receipts.

2. Use Mobile Technology: Save Processing Time by Empowering Your Field Teams

Tired of dealing with paper time cards? A connected, cloud-based construction management suite that features a mobile time card solution allows project managers or field supervisors to collect labor hours in a snap. A mobile time card solution that shares real time data with your back office ERP means your field teams can easily capture hours, labor rates and project or phase time distributions.

Think of how much time your company could save every week trying to track down missing time data or rekeying labor hours and wage rates from one system to another.

Construction Payroll Process for Employees
Self-Service technology gives employees the ability to download common payroll related documents, view hours, manage time off and more.

3. Deploy Self-Service Tools 

While not typically a specific construction payroll workflow, additional HR tasks like tracking or reconciling employee hours and paid time off, processing expense reports and receipts, and more can be a hassle for your HR and payroll teams.. And, when payroll and HR professionals have to juggle multiple employee requests like information updates, pay stubs, wage questions and more, it only adds to the time and stress.

However, technology has made it easier for today’s professionals to self-serve their HR and payroll needs. Web portals, mobile tools and other online features built into connected construction software suites provide a centralized point of access, available to employees when they need it. Take the online portal as an example, workers can simply log in to see their hours and wage rates, manage time off and benefits, see important documentation, view pay stubs, W2s, tax information and much more. 

Not only does a self-service approach via technology save time and hassle, it creates digital audit trails to reduce liabilities around payroll and HR processes. And, it further reduces a reliance on paper and manual processes—especially important as fewer and fewer employees want to deal with either during the COVID-19 pandemic.

Construction Payroll Direct Deposit
Send paychecks straight to the bank, digitally.

4. Use Direct Deposit: No More “Where’s My Paycheck?”

It's convenient, reduces payroll processing time and provides a digital stamp—showing when and where a check was deposited. Employees also enjoy the hassle free nature of having a check placed directly in their bank accounts. Additionally, some contractors today are also turning to alternative payment processes like paying wages directly to ready-to-use debit cards or online payment processing sites.

The bottom line is that workers get paid on time without handling paper. HR or payroll departments don’t have to wait for employees to pick up their checks nor do paychecks have to be mailed.

Construction Payroll Communication
Open the lines of communication on and off the job.

5. Automate Your Construction Payroll Processes with Technology

Like all accounting processes, payroll involves a lot of moving parts and data tracking—so it’s best to take as much of the human error out of the equation as possible. Verifying your data prior to processing payroll can work wonders, and having the right technology to help with this process only provides more peace of mind. 

From ensuring that overtime is calculated correctly to making time-card adjustments, utilizing connected, cloud-based construction accounting and payroll software can automate these processes in real time while ensuring accuracy.

6. Be Sure You’re Using Construction-Specific Payroll Processes—and Software 

Of course there are many generic, off-the shelf payroll solutions available. Your organization may even have a home grown system. But do these systems really meet your needs? Chances are, the answer is no. In order to make your life easier, your software should have the ability to handle today’s construction-specific payroll issues. 

A single, unified construction-specific payroll solution should be able to easily address multi-company, multi-project payroll processing, union payroll requirements, have built-in tax codes, be able to easily match labor to specific jobs or project phases and much more. Your construction payroll software should also be a cloud-based solution, allowing your payroll departments to stream labor hours, calculate pay rates, and process paychecks in real time. Why deal with the headaches of manually collected and processed payroll data and working late hours to ensure this week’s paychecks go out on time?

To understand how a cloud based solution can help improve your construction payroll processes, please get in touch with us today.

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