New Feature: Give Admin and Leave Admin Users Read-only Access

Unlike many other payroll systems, SimplePay does not charge for or restrict the number of users on the system. This means that you can give system access to all the people that need it, whether this is a department head who approves leave, a payroll administrator who processes payroll or an external accountant who completes filing submissions. While our user settings already have a range of roles and restrictions that you can configure, we’ve had several requests for giving users read-only access to the system. 

We are delighted to announce that we’ve upgraded our permissions to enable you to give users read-only access, with extensive flexibility that lets you customise this on a company, pay frequency or pay point level. 

When adding a user, you can still select their permission role (e.g. Leave Admin) and restrict them to specific companies, pay frequencies or pay points. However, when restricting users with Admin or Leave Admin roles, you can select the type of access for each company, pay frequency or pay points, namely:

  • Full: gives the user full access to the areas of the system as defined by that particular role
  • Read-only: gives the user read-only access to the areas of the system as defined by that particular role
  • None: gives the user no access

For more information on setting up users with read-only access, refer to our help article here.

We hope that you love the new feature! Please reach out to us if you have any trouble setting up users or if you have any further questions.

Team SimplePay

PDPA (Amendment) Act 2020

If there’s one thing that the SimplePay team cares about as much as making your world of payroll a breeze, it’s giving you peace of mind about the data which you share with us. 

When the PDPA (Amendment) Bill 2020 was first released on 5 October, we got straight to work, reviewing and updating our pages and processes. The amendments gained presidential approval on 25 November and have since been published in the Government Gazette last Friday 11 December. Accordingly, we have updated our site’s PDPA webpage to reflect these changes.

Below we have provided a brief summary of the key changes and additions to the PDPA by the PDPA (Amendment) Act 2020 (the Amendment Act).

Data Breaches

The Amendment Act altered and expanded the definition of a data breach. Under the amended PDPA, a data breach is now defined as:

  1. The unauthorised access, collection, use, disclosure, copying, modification or disposal of personal data; or
  2. the loss of a storage medium or device, on which personal data is stored in circumstances where one or more of the unauthorised actions in point 1 is likely to occur.

If your company experiences a notifiable data breach, you are required to inform the Personal Data Protection Commission (PDPC) of that breach.

A notifiable data breach is one that:

  1. Results, or is likely to result in Significant Harm to an affected individual; or 
  2. is, or is likely to be of a Significant Scale.

Significant Harm and Significant Scale are terms yet to be fully defined. In the explanatory statement to the Act, it states that there will be specified circumstances and requirements to be referenced in deciding if each is satisfied. At present, these have not been released, but there are suggestions of what may satisfy these requirements in the public consultation papers for the Amendment Act.

SimplePay acts as a data intermediary in providing you services. Data intermediaries also have data breach obligations. We will inform you of any external data breach, whether we deem it notifiable or not. We already have a strong grasp of the required steps to handle these situations and inform you through our operations in Europe. We continue to apply the rules and processes of the EU’s General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) to all our business operations (including Singapore). GDPR imposes similar obligations, which means that we are well prepared in the unlikely event of a data breach.

Thankfully we have never had to put our data breach steps into practice. However, from this strong base of understanding, you can rest assured that we are ready to deal with the situation quickly, professionally and effectively.

Data Portability

Data portability allows individuals to request for their data to be ported from one organisation to another.

For this to be permitted:

  1. There must be an ongoing relationship between the individual and the organisation; and
  2. The individual must complete a data porting request in the prescribed format.

As a data intermediary, SimplePay is exempt from these obligations, but we will assist you in requests you may receive, as is reasonable.

More information on Data breaches and Data portability can be found on our PDPA webpage.

Protection of Personal Data

The original PDPA required companies to make reasonable security arrangements to protect information. The Amendment Act has expanded the definition to now also include the loss of any storage medium or device on which personal data is held. 

This is cast very broadly and could include both physical mediums, such as securing company laptops, and virtual mediums such as cloud-based resources and their connected servers. Although arguably implied by the original wording, this now expressly shows that these risks should be accounted for in any security arrangements made.

Financial Penalties

To enforce compliance with the PDPA, a number of penalties have been introduced for both individuals and employers. As an example, if your employee discloses personal data, or their conduct causes the disclosure of personal data under the control of your company, they could be liable to pay a fine of up to $5 000, or even face imprisonment for a term of up to two (2) years.

Equally, if your company is found to have breached certain provisions of the Act (Parts III-VI, VIA and VIB), it could face an order for specific performance and a fine of up to $1 million.

This really does show that compliance pays!

We hope this brief dive into the PDPA amendments has proved useful to you. If you have any questions relating to SimplePay’s PDPA compliance, you can contact our team at [email protected]

Equally, if you are not yet a client of SimplePay but would like to be, or if you’d like to know how we can take the effort out of filing and calculating payroll, get in contact with us or visit our website: www.simplepay.com.sg.

Keep well and stay safe.

Team SimplePay

JSS Payout Reminder and Update

In the blog post today we have an update for you on the Job Support Scheme (JSS), previously mentioned in our blog post on 14 September. This post summarises the key points from an IRAS media release, dated 19 October.

JSS Background

The JSS was introduced by the Singapore Government to help you retain your workforce by subsidising your employees’ wages. For the first month of the scheme in May, all eligible employers received 75% wage support for their employees wages. For the remaining months that JSS is operational, the amount of support you receive depends on the sector that your company operates. 

SectorWage Support Percentage
Aviation, Tourism and Built Environment75%
Food Services, Retail, Arts and Entertainment, Land Transport and Marine & Offshore50%
All Other Sectors25%

The JSS scheme will continue to operate up to March 2021, with payments being made to employers for set groups of months. This equates to 17 months of wage support for your business if you qualify! 

JSS payments for the months of June, July and August are due to start from 29 October 2020.

N.B. For all the payout dates, see this IRAS Web Page.

How to Receive Earlier Payouts

If you currently have a GIRO or PayNow Corporate arrangement with IRAS you can expect to receive payment from 29 October. If you don’t currently use either of these arrangements, instead IRAS will send you a cheque which you can expect to receive from 4 November onwards.

As a result, you are more likely to be paid sooner if you adopt either GIRO or PayNow Corporate. Due to this, IRAS is encouraging employers to sign up for PayNow Corporate. If you have done this by 23 October 2020, you should receive the earlier and direct JSS payments through your new account.

You can sign up for PayNow Corporate by linking your UEN / NRIC / FIN to your bank account via internet banking. If unsure how to do this, you should reach out to your bank

Review of the JSS

The amount of JSS that you receive for each of your employees is calculated from your CPF contributions for each of your employees. Therefore, it is important that you continue to correctly report and pay your CPF contributions.

As part of their checks on JSS eligibility and compliance, IRAS is sending a small number of employers self review letters to complete. If you are selected, you must conduct a self review of your CPF contributions and provide declarations and / or documents to prove your eligibility to partake in the JSS. The abovementioned October 2020 payouts will be withheld from you until you have submitted your self assessment and had it reviewed by IRAS.

SME Go Digital

As stated in our last blog post, we are looking into registering SimplePay as an SME Go Digital pre-approved vendor. Part of this process includes receiving satisfaction surveys from yourselves, our amazing clients!

By helping us become approved, you will in turn open the door to various Government grants and bonuses that could help develop your business. It’s a win-win!

If you joined us between 6 and 18 months ago, we need your help! To assist us by completing the short survey, please get in contact with us at inf[email protected].

We hope that this information has proved useful to you. If you have any questions on how the information above relates to SimplePay, please feel free to contact us at [email protected].

Equally, if you are not yet a client of SimplePay but would like to be, or if you’d like to know how we can take the effort out of filing and calculating payroll, get in contact with us or visit our website: www.simplepay.com.sg.

Keep well and stay safe.

Team SimplePay

UI Tweaks for Profile Pages

We take our mission of simplifying payroll seriously! It’s why we believe that the small details matter. With that in mind, you may have noticed some slight changes to our user interface for profile pages, such as Companies, Billing and User Profile. These are the pages that you can access when clicking on the profile icon. 

We’ve made these changes so that you can more easily identify when you are working on your profile as opposed to within a specific company, eliminating any confusion around whether your changes will apply at a company or profile level. 

When working in a specific company, you’ll see the usual interface that you have come to know. When working on one of the profile pages, you’ll now see the following changes:

  • In the top left corner, you’ll now see the G-ref number for your profile or the page name, depending on which page you are on. The top bar has also changed to a darker colour to make it clear that you are working on the profile as a whole and not on a specific company.
  • The sidebar menu for the company that you were working in no longer appears. To return to the company, click on the link that says “Go back to <company name>” that appears in the top left corner next to the G-reference number of page name.

We hope you enjoy this small, but useful change to your user experience.

Not a SimplePay client but want a payroll software provider that cares about your experience? SimplePay offers a free 30-day trial that allows you to see just how easy your payroll experience can be. You can sign up here.

Team SimplePay

Emerging from Lockdown – Support for Businesses

At SimplePay, there is nothing that we love more than being able to make your payroll a breeze, so you can grow and build your business. Although this is our main goal, when we see opportunities that will benefit you, we don’t turn a blind eye. Therefore, our blog today is about updating you on some of the new and extended support measures provided by the Government, as well as an exciting prospect for the future.

Extension of the Job Support Scheme

The Job Support Scheme (JSS) was launched to help employers pay their employee’s wages during the circuit breaker period and was due to conclude at the end of last month. In August, the Government announced that it is extending the JSS for up to 7 months to March 2021. 

The value of the support given is dependent on the sector in which you operate, with the hardest hit sectors receiving more support. 

For more information on the extension and the JSS you can read this IRAS web page.

Job Growth Incentive

To help sectors that are doing well and have the means and opportunity to increase their workforce, the Government has announced the new Job Growth Incentive (JGI). Under the incentive, the Government will pay 25% of new local worker’s salaries for the first year of employment. Even better, if the new employee is aged 40 and above, the co-payment could be up to 50%!

The way that JGI works is that if you increase your overall local workforce between 1 September 2020 and 28 February 2021, in comparison to their numbers in August 2020, you will qualify for Government support. An additional requirement is that you need to increase the number of your employees earning $1, 400 or more per month.

The support consists of payment of 25% for those under 40, or 50% for those 40 and above for the first $5, 000 per month paid to these additional employees. The support will continue for one year from the date of appointment, provided that you continue to meet the requirements.

Payments will be automatically received in 5 separate payouts, based on your mandatory CPF contributions, with the first payout being in March 2021. There may be some cases where you will need to provide further evidence upon IRAS’s request, after which you will then receive your payout. 

For more information on the JGI, please visit IRAS’s dedicated page.

An Exciting Prospect

SMEs Go Digital is a scheme being run by the Government to encourage the uptake of technology by SMEs for certain business functions. Companies which meet the criteria can receive a payout of up to 80% of the cost of the solutions from the Productivity Solutions Grant. 

We are looking into registering SimplePay under the scheme and part of this process includes receiving satisfaction surveys from yourselves. If you joined us between 6 and 18 months ago, we need your help! If you’d like to assist us by completing the short survey, please get in contact with us at [email protected].

We hope that this information has proved useful to you. If you have any questions on how the information above relates to SimplePay, please feel free to contact us at [email protected].

Equally, if you are not yet a client of SimplePay but would like to be, or if you’d like to know how we can take the effort out of filing and calculating payroll, get in contact with us or visit our website: www.simplepay.com.sg.

Keep well and stay safe.

Team SimplePay

Self-Service Hours Worked Input

Last week we introduced a new opt-in feature for self-service – employees can submit expense claims or submit inputs for certain custom items (Read more in the blog post we released). We have now expanded this feature to allow employees who are paid an hourly rate to submit the number of hours worked for the period.

As with expense claims, this saves the payroll administrator processing time, since the payroll administrator only needs to capture the employee’s hourly rate once and then the monthly inputting of hours is done by the employee. It also allows a direct line manager who may have more knowledge on the employee’s hours to be set up as the approver for these hours.

Remember: As this is an opt-in feature (for now), you need to request it from our support team, at no additional charge. More information on how this feature works can be found on our help page here.

Not a SimplePay client but you want to use our self-service feature? Unfortunately this feature is only available to SimplePay clients. The good news is that we offer a 30 day free trial and sign up is a breeze! You can find out more and sign up for a trial here. Come and experience the joy of stress-free payroll.

Team SimplePay

Self-Service Employee Claim Requests

Update (13 August 2020): We’ve expanded this feature to include an input for hours worked by employees who are hourly paid.

We love innovating to make payroll simpler and our new self-service employee claims feature does just that.

Our employee self-service option was built to ease the administration burden that comes with payroll:

  • Employees can access historic payslips and tax certificates at any time without having to ask the payroll administrator to send it to them. 
  • Leave requests allow employees to request leave and upload supporting documentation (such as medical certificates), saving you the hassle of having to remember to record leave or follow up with employees for their supporting documentation.
  • Info update requests allow employees to request changes to their basic information, ensuring that you have up-to-date and accurate information for employees.

Our new feature expands self-service to allow employees to submit inputs for the following payslip items:

  • Expense claims
  • Custom items, with the Input Type as “Once-off for specified payslips”, “Different on every payslip”, “Hourly rate * factor * hours” and “Custom rate * quantity”

Employees can enter the amounts that they wish to claim and upload supporting documentation. An approver simply needs to approve the request. It will then be added to the employee’s next draft payslip without the payroll administrator needing to capture any of these payslip amounts. In addition to saving the payroll administrator processing time, it also takes the hassle out of verifying claims, since a separate approver (such as a direct line manager) can be set up for this purpose.

Note: As this is an opt-in feature (for now), you need to request it from our support team, at no additional charge. More information on how this feature works can be found on our help page here.

Not a SimplePay client but you want to use our self-service feature? Unfortunately this feature is only available to SimplePay clients. The good news is that we offer a 30 day free trial and sign up is a breeze! You can find out more and sign up for a trial here. Come and experience the joy of stress-free payroll.

Team SimplePay

Ending Service on SimplePay

One of the demands that COVID-19 has placed on businesses is the need to be flexible in the number of staff under their employ at a certain period in time. We at SimplePay appreciate this and so the blog today is aimed at informing you on what you need to do to accommodate your situation through the system to ensure accurate submissions, enable employees to claim benefits and prevent unnecessary billing.

Employees Leaving your Company

Ending Employees’ Service

If for any reason, one or more of your employees are no longer able to work for your business and none of the measures laid out in the Resilience, Solidarity or Fortitude budgets are viable (Some of which are mentioned in this blog), it is important to end their service on SimplePay for the following reasons:

  1. Ending employees’ service correctly provides them access to alternative support measures, such as the COVID-19 Support Grant.
  2. SimplePay’s pricing model is based on the number of active employees on the system at the start of your monthly billing cycle. Therefore, if the employee has not had their service ended on the system when your invoice is generated, you will be charged for the employee even if no payslips have been processed for that employee. 

Information on ending an employee’s service is detailed in this help article, including the end service checklist and managing an employee’s end of service. You can also read more about our end service checklist in our blog from 25 June.

If you have several employees whose service you have to end, you can do this in bulk as detailed on this help page.

Actions to Take Upon Ending an Employee’s Service

The date which an ex-employee ceases to work for you needs to be recorded on SimplePay so to inform the relevant authorities. We recommend that you end the service of the employee, before finalising payslips and completing your monthly CPF return. This will mean it is reflected on the CPF Return. Some classes of employees may also require an IR21 form for tax clearance purposes, more information on this can be found on our help page.

If whilst still under your employ, an ex-employee was sent invoice emails from SimplePay, the billing email list needs to be amended. To do this, click on the Profile Icon > Billing > Update Billing Preferences and remove the relevant billing email(s). The same is true for any granted admin roles on SimplePay, where these access rights should be deactivated for ex-employees.

Shutdown of Business

If lockdown or other reasons mean you need to close your business on a temporary or permanent basis, your intention on whether to reopen your business or not determines the appropriate actions to take.

Closing for a Period of Time

If it becomes necessary to close your business, but you intend to reopen, you should end the service for all employees. 

As you are charged per active employee, ending the service for your workforce means that you will not be billed until they become active again.

Permanent Business Closure

In the unfortunate event that you need to close your business permanently, the following steps  need to be followed:

  1. End Service for Employees and Submit your CPF Return – as described under “Employees Leaving Your Company” (above), the employees’ service should be ended so this is reflected automatically on their CPF Return to inform IRAS.
  2. Deactivate Admin Users on your Account – if you have provided administrative privileges to your company to any ex-employees, we would recommend that these are deactivated upon ending their service. To do this, click on the profile icon in the top right corner > Manage Users > Delete. Should you wish for an ex-employee to retain access, you can leave their access rights unamended.
  3. (Optional) Remove the Company From SimplePay – If you wish you can delete your company from SimplePay. We strongly recommend against this as it will mean you no longer have access to information assimilated on SimplePay, which might come in useful e.g. should you have any documents requested by IRAS. If you wish to delete your company, details of how to can be found here.

Closing Your Account on SimplePay

It may be the case that you have come to the decision to close your account on SimplePay. If you are sure that this is the right decision for you and there is nothing we can do to change your mind you will need to do the following:

  1. Get in touch with SimplePay at [email protected] and request they close your account. It would be greatly appreciated if in this email you include:
    1. The reason(s) for ending your SimplePay membership
    2. Method of payment used (direct debit / EFT etc.)

N.B.  SimplePay provides you with the option of freezing your account, meaning you can still access SimplePay for three months. This provides you with ample opportunity to ensure that there is not any information that you need which is still on SimplePay.  If though, you are certain that you have all the information you need, you can also opt to close your account with immediate effect.

  1. If there are any outstanding sums, these must be paid. If you are not in a position to do so, please advise us of this so that our billing team can engage with you to determine the best course of action.

We appreciate that this must be an extremely stressful and turbulent situation for you, with many hard decisions to make. If this is the end of your use of SimplePay, thank you for the support. We wish you well and hope that we will get the opportunity to work symbiotically with you again in the not-so-distant future. Should you have any questions on the above, please do not hesitate to contact us at [email protected].

Keep well and stay safe.

Team SimplePay

Employee Filtering Revamp

SimplePay has always taken a user-orientated approach to payroll. It’s why we focus on two things – building an outstanding product and providing quality customer support. In a nutshell, SimplePay is all about you – our clients! So when the requests came streaming in for an easier way to filter employers, we jumped right on it. Introducing our newly revamped employee filters.

Our new employee filters functionality gives you more options for filtering employees. Depending on what page you’re on, you can filter employees according to pay point, pay frequency or active / inactive status. All pages with filters also let you select employees individually or use the convenient search bar to find specific employees by searching for their name or employee number.

Filters have been added or revamped for the following:

  • Employee list (Under Employees)
  • Employee users (Under Employees > Self-Service)
  • The leave overview calendar (Under Employees > Leave Overview)
  • All bulk action options (Under Employees > Bulk Actions)
  • Bulk finalising payslips (under Pay Runs)
  • All reports (Under Reports)

Finding an employee or selecting only the employees that you need has never been easier! Go check it out and let us know what you think.

Not a SimplePay client but want a payroll system that is all about you, the user? The good news is that we offer a 30 day free trial that allows you to explore our system and see just how easy and stress-free payroll can be. Sign up is a breeze! You can find out more and sign up for a trial here.

Team SimplePay

New Process for Company Transfers

At SimplePay, the protection of your data and privacy is of utmost importance to us. With that in mind, we’re changing the way that we do company transfers. Our new 4-step process makes company transfers even more secure and gives you greater control over the process. 

Company transfers involve moving a company from one SimplePay profile to another. Transferring the company will change which profile owns the company on SimplePay and consequently which profile gets billed for the company.

It is important to note the following, which often causes confusion:

  • Ownership of a company on SimplePay is not necessarily related to the actual ownership of a business. When a new company is added to SimplePay, it belongs to the profile that the user was logged into when creating it. For example, a small business may be owned by an entrepreneur, but the company’s payroll is managed by an accounting firm. If the company was added to the accounting firm’s profile, the accounting firm is the owner of the company on SimplePay, even though they are not the owners of the registered business.
  • The need for company transfers must not be confused with the need for different users. If you need to give or revoke an individual’s access to a company, this can be done by adding or removing the individuals as users. (The exception being that you cannot remove the account owner i.e. the user with the email address used to create the profile that owns the company).

The following examples illustrate when company transfers are necessary:

  • A business’s payroll is managed by an accounting firm and the business now wishes to process their own payroll. The company on SimplePay would be transferred from the accounting firm’s profile to the business’s profile.
  • A business is sold. The previous owners should no longer have ownership of the company on SimplePay. The company on SimplePay would need to be transferred from the prior owner’s profile to the new owner’s profile.

If you have determined that a company transfer is necessary, you will need to follow our 4-step process for company transfers, which is outlined in the following help article:

Can I transfer a company to a different profile?

Not a SimplePay client but want to enjoy the benefits of secure payroll? Unfortunately our payroll system is only available to clients. The good news is that we offer a 30 day free trial and sign up is a breeze! You can find out more and sign up for a trial here. Come and experience the joy of stress-free payroll.

Team SimplePay