Managing leave requests where the dates include public holidays is a real chore. Today we’ve added Holidays to make it easier for you to more accurately calculate your employee’s leave requests.
You can add any number of custom Holidays and Groups for your business and assign them to employees as required. The first step is to ensure that you have the right groups and holidays configured. You then assign the employee a Holiday Group on their Employment screen. An employee can be assigned to one Holiday Group.
We’ve created Holidays and Groups automatically for you based on your country with dates entered for 2015. We’ll keep public holidays up to date each year for you so automatically.
This is just the first step for Holidays and it currently works with leave requests. When the request dates includes a holiday for the employee, the number of hours requested is automatically reduced by the number of holidays falling within the date range. For example, a request for 26–30 January 2015 will automatically calculate the 26th as public holiday in Australia, for Australia Day, and reduce the required number of hours requested.
To use Holidays for new requests in the remaining few weeks of 2014 you simply need to manually add the holidays you need and assign the employees to the correct group. Any new request will use this information and previously completed requests will not be affected.
We have plans to roll this out to more areas in the coming releases including timesheet visual indicators, automatically including a days pay within the pay run and a visual calendar for everyone to see when key payroll dates and who’s away from the office.
Why not use My Payroll (employee self-service portal) to let employees apply for leave online? It makes life easier for them and for you. You’ll be able to approve requests online and have electronic records at your fingertips. It also allows your employees access to information, such as how much time off/leave they have due, without asking the HR department. Employees and managers can plan December holidays better, knowing at all times exactly how much time off/leave is available.
As we continue to build UK and New Zealand Payroll in Xero we get the opportunity to give key pages a refresh. In this release you’ll notice that Pay Items have moved to a left-hand navigation.
As a result we’ve added a Display Name field for Earnings. We understand that sometimes an earning name can be confusing for employees, especially due to penalty rates flowing in from timesheet add-on partners. This optional field allows you to control what name is displayed to the employee on their pay information, on timesheet entry and in the employee portal.
For our US customers we’ve also added support for additional Benefit categories including:
- Group Term Life (GTL)
- Personal Use of a Company Car (PUCC)
- S-Corp Health Insurance (S-Corp)
When setting up payroll frequency in Calendars (Australia) or Schedules (US) we’ve made it clearer to understand how this works to ensure you get setup and ready to go correctly.
You’ll now see the next three payment dates depending on the Start Date and First Payment dates you select. The Name will be auto-populated based on the type you select, but it’s editable.
US payroll reports, annual forms and electronic filing
As the financial year comes to an end in the US we’ve released key updates to US Payroll in Xero including state annual forms and payroll reports.
Under Taxes & Filings we’ve added support for the following forms: New Jersey NJ W-3, Utah TC-941R and Virginia VA-6.
You’ll also notice five new reports under Payroll Reports that are specific to US Payroll. These include:
- Opening Balance Summary
- Opening Balance Details
- Total Cost Summary
- Total Cost Detail
- Taxable Wage Summary
Coming in January will be the first release of State electronic payroll filing and payments with the focus on our current seven states. This will allow you to file and pay your state payroll taxes with a click of a button. More on this coming really soon! We will then begin rolling out calculation and filings for new states.
For full details of this release see the 9 December release notes.