Rona Betts

Head of Payroll & Pensions, Aster Group

I started my payroll career with the Women’s Royal Naval Service (WRNS) when I was seventeen years old, where I learned manual payroll. Because of my qualifications when I left school, I was told I had to do payroll as I was ‘too qualified’ to do any other role within the WRNS!

So, it was purely by chance that I ended up in such a brilliant profession, but I am so glad I did. By the time I left, I was processing 400+ manual pay calculations (gross to net); and 68% of my life had been payroll related.

I have gone from strength to strength since those times, enjoying the ever-changing world of payroll and all the challenges that it brings daily.

I have been responsible for both large complex payrolls and small payrolls across all areas of business. I have played a key part in choosing software for the business and being a key player in projects.

'Being payroll’ runs through my core. I feel like I am being paid to do my favourite hobby daily, and I cannot imagine ever having any other kind of job or career.

In my 37 years doing payroll, I have been fortunate enough to be recognised in many ways amongst the profession. I am part of ‘Reward 300’, and bene part of an employer trailblazer group that has worked on setting up payroll apprenticeships. I have spent the last twenty years or so in payroll management.

Payroll means everything to me. I love what I do and honestly believe I have the best job in the world. It is always so rewarding, and no two days are the same. I love the teamwork and the challenges we face daily. The sometimes-complex legislation and ever-changing rules and regulations are what motivate and drive me. I love looking for ways to improve processes and maintain compliance.

I became a member of the CIPP as I realised from quite an early point in my career that being part of the Chartered Institute has many benefits, such as support and advice when needed and recognition for being part of the payroll profession. CIPP is a great asset to both myself and the company, especially if I have any questions or need anything confirmed regarding legislation. It is an easy and efficient way of getting answers to sometimes complicated scenarios. CIPP is always supportive.

Being a full member – ‘MCIPP’–  has helped raise my profile, as most businesses recognise that this is something that they require payroll professionals to have.

I had to apply to become MCIPP. All my details and experience were placed before a board who then granted this membership level based on my experience, knowledge, and essential criteria. The process for application was easy to understand, and the submission straight forward. The approval stage was quick and efficient, too.

The most helpful part of CIPP, in my opinion, is being able to get advice in a quick turnaround. The Advisory Service team are always quick to respond and either email or talk through the query with you.

The details they provide are fantastic and clear.

I would highly recommend every person who works in payroll to become a member of CIPP. It gives so many benefits and raises your profile within the payroll profession.

I would describe what my CIPP membership means in three words: Essential, Worthwhile, Amazing.

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