Payroll force gathers momentum in SA


The 13th annual SAPA (South African Payroll Association) conference culminated in a final session in Durban in mid-September. With more than 40% of payroll in Africa being conducted through South Africa, and $173 billion of business being conducted per day globally, the payroll industry is becoming all the more significant.

Over 280 delegates, including payroll administrators and C-level business managers, have attended the Johannesburg conference. "This response - and the Association?s announcement of the launch of Payroll Awards and Payroll Week initiatives in November this year, is evidence of the growing maturity of the industry', says James McKerrell, Chairman of SAPA.

"We chose Driving Payroll Excellence as the theme for this year?s Conference. It highlights the fact that payroll on the continent has matured, the industry is more recognised and valued, and now is the time for us to drive this through to all levels of business operation in South Africa and Africa,' says McKerrell.

The national event featured presentations from several keynote speakers, including Dr Wynand Goosen, Daleen Meinhardt, Thembi Chagonda, Dr Linda Meyer, Nicolette Nicholson and Susan Breytenbach.

These renowned industry leaders covered numerous topics that continue to drive the impact of payroll within both the private and public sectors - including payroll qualifications, risk management, the Labour Bill, forensic data analytic, HR, legislation and tax.

Focusing on the application and relevance of payroll within commerce, Conference MC Michael Jackson reflected on a report by the IDC which states that by 2020 people should expect to be 44 times busier than they are at present.

The ability to adapt to new working environments and deal with change is considered a must in the modern workplace.

Jackson reminded audiences of what he termed "the seven deadly sins of modern business', including turning a blind eye to burning issues, seeking to reduce every cost possible - such as marketing - and laziness and indifference wrapped in complexity, policy and procedures.

Delegates were also treated to a number of spin-off presentations relevant to key topics tabled for discussion and those that characterise the South African and African commercial landscape. These included Employment Equity, wellness and stress management, amongst others.

In addition to the business-centric agenda, SAPA directors also handed over a cheque to the value of R50 000 to management of the Payroll Giving not-for-profit organisation.