Exo Tips & Tricks - Winter 2019

Domestic Violence Leave (DVL) in Exo Payroll

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From 1 April 2019 the Domestic Violence – Victims’ Protection Act adds legal protections in the workplace for people affected by domestic violence.   The act gives employees affected by domestic violence the right to:

  • 10 days of paid domestic leave
  • The ability to ask for short term flexible working arrangements
  • The right to not be treated adversely in the work place because they may have been affected. 

Exo Payroll version 2019.05 contains the new functionality to manage Domestic Violence Leave (along with some minor changes to Extra Pay and Withholding Tax calculations). Users of Exo Payroll don’t have to upgrade to this version if this functionality is not needed, however it you have a requirement to pay DVL and wish to upgrade there is a slightly different process than what is usually followed. 

You can find the install files and instructions to upgrade on our Knowledge base

Some key things for you to know about DVL:

Who can get Domestic Violence Leave?

Any employee who has worked for their employer for at least 6 months, and passes the “hours test”:

In that 6 months they have worked at least an average of 10 hours a week and must have worked at least either 1 hour each week or 40hours each month.

Note that the domestic violence incident may have occurred at any time prior to the employee’s employment with your company – they are still entitled to leave now if they need it.

How is it paid?

Domestic Violence Leave comes under the RDP (Relevant Daily Pay) rules in the same way that Sick, Bereavement, Public Holidays and Alternative leave are valued. 

I.e. – what the employee would have earned had they been at work on that day.

It must be processed and paid as a leave type for valuation and auditing purposes – Exo payroll version 2019.05 contains preset functionality to do this. 

What about Confidentiality and security for employees? 

ALL aspects of payroll management is and should be sensitive and confidential, but DVL brings with it another aspect to that. 

We recommend putting some company policies in place to ensure that your workplace is equipped to deal with anything that comes up – this could involve discrimination, personal grievances, health and safety, how to support the employee, and how sensitive information is handled.

From a payroll perspective:

  • If you are a MyStaffInfo user, you will see that DVL has been excluded from this module.  This is because requests must be in writing.
  • If you are a Time and Attendance user, this latest version will include Daily Rules and exceptions to include DVL into your weekly processing rules.  Note that if you have line managers who maintain times and will see this it’s important that they are across the securities and sensitivities of DVL and understand their role and obligations to the employee.
  • Your payroll has the option to change the name on the payslip, so that you may show this as a more mundane payment if you wish – what you show this as on the payslip is up to your own company policy
  • For auditing and tracking purposes everywhere else in the payroll will show this as Domestic Violence Leave or DVL.  Again, it’s important to ensure that anyone with access to this information understands their obligations.  

Where to get help:

For product help, you can always contact us.

For assistance with your rights and responsibilities:

Employment New Zealand - Domestic Violence Leave

MBIE - Domestic Violence Leave Search

Shine or Shine - DVFREE

6 tips for securing your payroll data

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Personal data security has always been a big issue in all business, and there have been some high-profile cases in NZ over the years of data inadvertently shared or worse - fraudulently accessed.   We have also dealt with numerous clients over time who have lost data when PC’s or Servers have been destroyed. 

Your payroll and employee management software contains a huge amount of very sensitive information that you need to keep for a minimum of 7 years, so you need to make sure that your business is super vigilant in looking after this.

Some key tips to making sure your payroll data is secure:

  1. Make sure ALL payroll users have their own User Security profile set up, with their own individual password.  In addition ensure that the Administrator login has a unique password.  It’s all too common for us to get to a client’s site for consulting to find that either there is only 1 Administrator user set up for all the payroll users, or there are heaps of payroll user profiles setup, but the Administrator user doesn’t have a password!

    Likewise, if you have contractor on site (such as MYOB for consulting or a temp for processing) it’s a great to set up a new password for this person to use.   It’s so important to have a proper audit trail of who is doing what.

  2. Check that your payroll location is secure – this should be in a location that only employees with payroll responsibilities have access to.  If this is on a public drive on a server that many people have access too, this can be open for anyone to hack into the database to find information. 

  3. Make sure that your backups are going to a secure location.  If this is getting backed up to hard drives check that there is also a server backup being done so that payroll data is recoverable.

    Make sure that your backups aren’t going to a local C:\ drive - We have seen too many instances of payroll backups being made to C:\Payrollv, and when the Payroll users PC dies or is stolen the payroll data is unrecoverable as the local machine wasn’t being backed up. If the payroll is on a local laptop or pc make sure you cycle backups through 2 external USB drives. 

  4. If you are backing up to a portable device (i.e. a USB or Portable Hard Drive) make sure that this is kept in a secure location, offsite out of office hours if possible.  And as per above – it’s ideal to use 2 in a cycle in case one gets lost.

  5. Introduce policies in your organisation about sharing payroll data with 3rd parties.  Who is it acceptable to send payroll data to and how?

  6. Ensure that everyone anyone with access to the payroll data is aware of their responsibility to protect the employee data. This must also include employees who need to have access to the payroll folder for Time & Attendance reasons.

IRD focus on refunds and under-paid tax

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From 2019 onwards, the IRD has introduced a new system to automate the tax refund process. In many cases this replaces the need to file individual tax returns. Because of this system update, the IRD may have been in contact with some of your employees regarding PAYE under-payment, or to provide a tax refund if too much has been paid.

There could be a difference between IRD’s PAYE figure and Exo Payroll’s deductions. Please click here to view an article explaining where differences might arise and to learn more about the tax refunds and under-paid tax.

 

Have you seen the MYOB Exo Employer Services Education Centre?

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The Exo Employer Services Education Centre is your one place to go for everything you need to stay in the know. It has many videos, guides, hints, tips and troubleshooting articles and can be accessed anytime.

You can view the online help files and user guides for all modules of the Exo Employer Services system. You’ll never miss what’s in a release with our comprehensive release documentation highlighting all the inclusions of the current and previous releases. There are white papers to provide detailed technical information on specific topics. You can watch short instructional videos that show you how to set up and use the system. And if you still can't find what you're looking for, try the library of support articles on the Exo ES Knowledge Base.

So check out the Australian Edition or New Zealand Edition of the Education Centre today.