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Not-for-Profit Organisation

The Background
This client is a voluntary, not-for-profit organisation and is a registered charity under company law. They have a national network of nine resource centres providing a range of services to disabled people and their families. Additionally, the organisation also provides outreach services from these Resource Centres. The organisation is primarily funded by the government through the Health Service Executive (HSE).

The Situation
Prior to AscenTrust taking over the payroll, this not-for-profit organisation processed payroll in-house. Even though no problems were noticed the decision to outsource was driven by a need to reduce costs. Charities are suffering a reduction in donations and grants, at the same time the demand for services is increasing. Put simply, the not-for-profit organisation had to get more, for less.

The Solution
When moving from an in-house system to outsourcing a little more planning is required to ensure a smooth change over. This is because the processes are not already in place to outsource the payroll work. AscenTrust quickly established the process by which the payroll can be outsourced easily. The work to be done by HR and that which is to be done by Finance was clearly outlined. To give the customer the confidence that the changeover was going to work, in the first month the payroll was processed as usual by the not-for-profit organisation while AscenTrust ran a parallel payroll run but without doing the bank transactions. There were no differences in the two outputs, so in the second month AscenTrust took over completely. There were no glitches. AscenTrust not only processed the payroll but also prepared the input for the payroll by interfacing with the HR and Finance departments. An email hotline was established for employees to have their queries answered directly by AscenTrust.

From the beginning, AscenTrust continued to produce an output equivalent to the original system, but at a fraction of the cost. The cost savings are commercially sensitive but were very considerable.

In the middle of 2009, the Health Service Executive (HSE) which provides much of the funding this organisation changed the reporting requirements. The not-for-profit organisation provides a 26 county service and the HSE now demanded that salary costs be broken down according to the HSE district that they are delivered. Some of the employees provide services to more than one HSE district. Initially, the accounting staff thought that they would have to breakdown data from the payroll system in spreadsheets to produce the reports required to obtain the grants. When they learnt that AscenTrust can produce these reports they were delighted.

The Outcome
The not-for-profit organisation had benefited so significantly that it is exploring handing over additional work to be processed by AscenTrust. Some of the benefits are:
- Very considerable cost savings on internal salary versus
  outsourced service cost.
- No further need to own and maintain a PC and software for
  payroll which resulted in a saving of approximately Euro 500.00  
  per year.
- HSE reports which saved the accounting staff 4 hours per
  month in producing the reports manually.
- Most employee payroll queries are now handled directly by 
  AscenTrust while some are addressed in conjunction with HR.
  Employee satisfaction with payroll has actually increased, due
  to the prompt responses to queries.
- AscenTrust simulated what-if scenarios for the organisation to
  study the impact of planned increments, and for individual
  employees who were considering work pattern changes
- Based on HSE scales, AscenTrust calculated the pay
  adjustments made to the employees saving days of work for the
  accounting staff
- Problems were identified with the pension deductions, and 
  AscenTrust sorted these out directly with the company's
  pension provider.
- As expense reimbursements to employees were being paid out
  separately from payroll in a tedious process, AscenTrust has
  guided the customer to pay this along with payroll to achieve
  further savings in the accounting work. 

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