2022 Payroll Proficiency Index

How to excel in multi-country payroll

Payroll in Europe is notoriously complex. So, we asked over 1,300 big and small companies spread over 5 countries to assess 6 different drivers that make payroll either more difficult or easier. The result is a brand-new index to help you make the right choices.

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Executive Summary

“What makes a company proficient in payroll? Are there any differences between countries? And if so, why do some perform better? You’ll find the answers to these key questions in our 2022 Payroll Proficiency Index. On this website, you can browse through the results for Belgium, France, Germany, the Netherlands and the UK, while getting clarifications from seasoned payroll experts. Additionally, you’ll find out how SD Worx can boost you with your own payroll proficiency.”

Michael Custers, Chief Marketing Officer at SD Worx

Index per country

5 key takeaways

Legislation is the main obstacle for payroll proficiency

No fewer than 1 in 3 companies state that the socio-legal legislation in their countries has a (very) negative impact on their ability to successfully process their payroll. Particularly HR professionals in France and Belgium dread the legal complexity.

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Outsourcing makes payroll (much) easier for about 2 in 3 companies

On average, 64% of HR teams that (partly) outsource their payroll are satisfied about the way their partner handles it. Data processing and payroll calculation becomes (much) easier as well as data collection and integration – the most difficult task to do on your own.

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British companies score best for payroll proficiency

Of all 5 surveyed countries, the UK seems to be the most hospitable country for payroll. Local HR professionals especially praise the positive effects of available payroll technology and the easy access to expertise – whether in-house or via outsourcing.

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Cloud-based payroll solutions on the rise

Today, only half the European companies strictly use on-premise systems to process their payroll. Over 41% completely moved to the cloud, while 8.3% combines both systems. Mainly Dutch companies turn to the cloud to free up resources for key activities.

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The most complex phase in payroll? Data collection and integration

Out of 19 payroll tasks, European companies appear to be least proficient in ‘data collection and integration’. Over half the companies in the Netherlands place this among their top 5 most challenging tasks. Only in Germany this task is considered relatively easy.

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How the Payroll Proficiency Index works

Over 1,300 companies assessed the impact of 6 payroll drivers: legislation, reward, technology, capability, workforce and partner. Every assessment took 19 payroll tasks into account that HR teams have to deal with during pre-calculation, calculation and post-calculation of salaries. The resulting grid presents average scores for each driver per country. The higher the score, the more proficient companies are.

What SD Worx can do for you

Discover our local and international payroll solutions

Local payroll

With over 75 years of experience and proprietary payroll engines in 9 countries, SD Worx offers scalable, integrated and cloud-based payroll solutions for all companies looking to keep employee engagement and loyalty high.

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International payroll

If you operate in various countries, you get the importance of harmonised payroll processes and consolidated multi-country reporting. As a global provider that’s exactly what we can do for you – in over 150 countries!

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International employment

Looking to fully enjoy the benefits of an international workforce? Make sure legal compliance and smooth payroll administration are your strong suits, whether you hire a foreign employee or send one of your own abroad.

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Legal compliance

Flawless payroll and legal compliance are two sides of the same coin. But SD Worx works also helps with other legal and tax issues that stem from labour laws and regulations. You can count on our legal expertise in every country.

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Reward & compensation

The trick to creating attractive salary packages that exceed employee expectations and meet all your financial requirements: flexible reward and budgeting tools, deep expertise and comprehensive benchmark data.

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