Payroll And Its History

March 23, 2018

Most industrialized nations had some form of bookkeeping in place which would have resembled at least in part, what we now refer to as payroll. As merchants and their products expanded over the years, bookkeeping and payroll had to improve to enable them to better keep track of their sales and outgoings.

Nowadays, companies must track their employees pay as well as their sales and outgoings, and with modern taxes and tax laws being in a constant state of change, having an accurate payroll system in place has never been more important.

Payroll over the centuries:

In fact, payroll has a long history, and while it’s early form may not so closely resemble what we now know as being payroll, a system of recording pay was in use even as far back as 7000 BC. Archaeologists uncovered evidence carved into ancient stone, that depicted a record of payroll at approximately this period.

Archaeological evidence also shows records of Greek payroll from Athens, as early as the 5th century, and these are perhaps the most closely related to the methods in use today. Payment details and records of financial transactions were chiselled into stone by public servants, treasurers and clerks, and was a highly effective, if painstakingly slow, method of tracking and managing pay.

But it was the 19th century industrial revolution that really saw payroll being developed into its most effective form; employment on a much larger scale was underway to help manage increased production, and without a functioning payroll system, workers simply wouldn’t have received correct and timely wages. According to some sources, this was when the term ‘payroll’ was first coined and used.

Computerised payroll:

The 1950’s saw the early stages of development of the first computerised payroll system, when the LEO or Lyons Electronic Office, was created to try and control basic clerical tasks. Initially used for valuations, it quickly progressed to managing other, more complex clerical tasks such as those centred around payroll.

Payroll today:

In modern workplaces that employ even a small number of staff, an effective payroll system simply must be in place, and if it isn’t, employees will soon begin asking questions, particularly if their pay isn’t accurate or on time. Since employees are a vital element of any business, keeping them content is incredibly important, and all this usually takes is to give them fair working conditions and fair and timely pay.

Outsourcing payroll:

Letting an outside company deal with your payroll is often the best and most effective way of ensuring that not only do your staff get paid the right amount, and in a timely manner, but that as a business owner and employer, you remain tax law compliant.

If you’re a business owner and employer, you could save your company a lot of time and money by making a small investment in a professional payroll outsourcing solution.

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