What Does A Payroll Clerk Do?
Payroll clerks are financial clerks who are responsible for gathering and posting the number of hours worked for each employee and preparing the payroll. They verify that the information provided by employees is accurate and that it is recorded accordingly. They would then make the computations of the earnings of the employee for each pay period by basing this on their yearly salary or for those who are paid by the hour, by looking at the number of hours they have worked. If there are employees who must receive commission, they see to it that this is factored into their earnings as well. The same goes for bonuses.
Payroll clerks not only compute the amount that employees must receive. They should also see to it that the necessary deductions are also reflected in the accounts of all workers. Thus, they also calculate the tax that needs to be withheld from each employee as well as any monthly dues that they need to pay for. Moreover, payroll clerks are also responsible for ensuring that if there are premiums that each employee needs to pay for their health and other insurance policies then these are deducted from their pay. They also facilitate the deduction of 401k contributions for the retirement plans of their employees. If there are court-mandated garnishment orders, such as those for child support, payroll clerks will also ensure that this is carried out.
Nowadays, computations for payroll are typically carried out using computer software programs. Thus, proficiency in manipulating these programs is a must. However, payroll clerks may also need to refer to work tickets to be able to make their computations.
Payroll tasks are also responsible for ensuring that all employees have their timecards and that these are collected before the payroll is prepared. They must also see to it that these are already signed by their bearers. In the event that there are discrepancies in the timecard, they talk with the employee concerned to determine why and then obtain the approval of their supervisor before processing the pay. After the payroll has been prepared, they then print the checks, have them signed by their employer and then distribute these to the employees. All these tasks must be done on time since employees depend on their paychecks for their day-to-day needs.
While preparing the payroll and related tasks may seem to be the only responsibility of payroll clerks, their tasks also include processing the personal information of new employees so that they can be included in the payroll and be apprised of their tax responsibilities and their benefits. They also help employees who need to draw on these benefits by informing them of the paperwork and other documents they have to submit to be eligible for them. These include helping employees with loan applications and processing leave and maternity benefits. For employees who have just been terminated, on the other hand, payroll clerks are also responsible for ensuring that their payroll cycle has been completed and appropriately closed.