Payroll assurance scheme

The CIPP Payroll Assurance Scheme consists of two modules – the payroll module (PAS) and the payroll people module (PQP). PAS focusses on payroll processes and PQP focusses on learning and development of the staff within the payroll function.

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The process module (PAS)

PAS provides organisations with assurance that:

  • Payroll and associated processes are fit for purpose and comply with government legislation
  • Appropriate controls are in place to reduce payroll errors
  • Suitable processes are in place for preparing for legislative and organisational changes
  • The PAS assessment process will also highlight areas for development and improvement.  

Business benefits of the Payroll Assurance Scheme

  • Improvements in process lead to greater effectiveness and efficiencies within the payroll function in turn leading to overall time and cost savings for the organisation
  • Use of the PAS accreditation logo on your organisation’s communications and marketing materials will demonstrate to employees, customers and suppliers that your organisation is dedicated to compliance and best practice
  • Increased staff motivation and improvements in productivity as it demonstrates the organisation’s investment in the staff’s learning and skills development
  • Improved service levels to colleagues (in-house payroll) or customers (managed service providers)

To achieve the accreditation

  1. Register your interest below
  2. CIPP will provide you with initial information to assist you in deciding whether the scheme is appropriate for your needs
  3. If you decide to engage in the process CIPP will host an introductory meeting (face to face or virtual) to set you on the road and give you enough information for you to prepare for the assessment.
  4. When you are happy that you are ready for our assessor to visit you to undertake the assessment you let us know and we will confirm the assessment date
  5. The assessment is based on you providing our assessor with suitable documentary evidence to support your application.  The assessor’s report is scored against a CIPP benchmark scorecard.

PAS will also highlight areas for enhancement and improvement.  


The people module (PQP)

PQP is the people module of the Payroll Assurance Scheme (PAS) and is designed for organisations committed to best practice in the learning and development of their payroll people.

It is an accreditation of the policies, processes and procedures relating to learning and development of payroll staff within the payroll team and will specifically focus on:

  • Diagnosis of skills levels and learning and development needs
  • Appraisals and setting objectives which link into the organisations overall mission and vision
  • Measures to establish whether learning and development undertaken has been effectively 

FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS

How comprehensive is PAS?

Early in the process we will provide you with a checklist which identifies 14 categories which will be assessed; within these categories there are around 60 sub-elements. These elements have been put together based on experiences gained by our consultants in payroll and taxation roles, and we believe that this creates a comprehensive review of any payroll operation, whether that be in-house or a managed payroll service. The focus of the Payroll Assurance Scheme (PAS) is to verify that processes are in place to ensure accurate payments to payees but also to ensure that appropriate deductions are made from employees pay and are accounted for to HMRC and other authorities. The assessment will also test the readiness of the employer to assimilate major legislative changes in addition to regular changes such as at tax year changes.

How will PAS develop further?

The CIPP is committed to developing PAS to become the de facto payroll standard in the UK and to ultimately become an international standard. PAS was initially launched in 2012 and underwent a major revamp in 2015 based on the experiences of organisations who undertook the assessment and we will continue to review and fine tune based on the experiences of our customers and assessors.

Is PAS different from an internal audit?

The CIPP believes that the Payroll Assurance Scheme (PAS) approach is different from any other type of audit, or ISO type accreditation because it has been created by payroll and taxation experts and is focussed on aspects of payroll which other types of audit will not address . PAS is complementary to these audits and reports from such audits will be accepted as evidence during the PAS assessment.

Is PAS suitable for all payroll operations?

Yes. We have assessed payrolls within organisations with only one payroll employee to managed service providers with hundreds of payroll staff and large numbers of customers.

Why has PAS now been packaged with PQP?

The Payroll Assurance Scheme (PAS) and the Payroll Quality Partnership (PQP) have been very successful schemes in their own right, improving the payroll unction within those organisations who have engaged with them. As part of the ongoing improvements and developments to the schemes, the CIPP recognised that the two work better in conjunction with each other. The Payroll Assurance Scheme is concerned with compliance and best practice processes in operational payroll. Achievement of this scheme is essential to demonstrate compliance. The Payroll Quality Partnership then goes a step further in establishing best practice in the learning and development of the people behind the processes to ensure ongoing compliance. The value of one is lost without the other, and that is why the CIPP has packaged the two accreditations.

How much does PQP cost?

The fee payable depends on the number of payees processed and will be confirmed to you before you are asked to commit. The fee is payable prior to the start of the process and includes all assistance from CIPP, the assessment and detailed assessors report, the right to use the scheme logos in marketing and promotional material for two years and appropriate certificates and plaques.

How will PQP develop further?

Payroll Quality Partnership (PQP) has been around for eight years and during that time has been updated to reflect feedback from engaged organisations and we will continue to review and fine tune based on the experiences of our customers and assessors.

What value will the PQP logo have?

The Payroll Quality Partnership (PQP) logo is already recognised throughout the UK payroll industry as an indication of organisations committed to the development of their payroll staff. With your permission we will promote your corporate logo on the CIPP website thereby extending recognition for your organisation.

Why has PQP now been packaged with PAS?

The Payroll Assurance Scheme (PAS) and the Payroll Quality Partnership (PQP) have both been very successful as separate schemes in their own right in improving the payroll function in more than 100 organizations. At the same time it is worth acknowledging the differences between the two - in short, PAS is concerned with compliance and best practice processes in operational payroll whereas PQP is concerned with best practice in ensuring that the learning and development needs of the staff following those processes are met. They are different but they both have the same endgame – improving performance of the payroll function.

 

For more information

For more information on the CIPP Payroll Assurance Scheme, please contact us using the enquiry form.

Enquiry form

Whilst the CIPP has assessed and accredited the payroll processes and procedures, we have no association with any of the other practices or processes linked to organisations accredited with the Payroll Assurance Scheme. Should you wish to make a complaint about an organisation accredited with the Payroll Assurance Scheme, the CIPP can only investigate areas covered by the members code of conduct.

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