Floods and fire are regularly in the news and can create a drastic disruption to the ability of a business to be able to continue to trade. In such extreme circumstances disaster recovery planning is essential.

Part of a secure disaster recovery plan is the creation of a payroll processing and payments backup plan. If a business is unable to pay its staff on time it risks losing their loyalty and trust as failure to make payments on time will, in many cases, cause personal financial hardship for those staff.

Businesses should already be thinking about moving away from cheque payments if that is what they are using and at least for a reliable backup plan they should look at an electronic payment method.

If internet banking is used then an alternative needs to be in place in the event that access to the internet is not available at the time needed.

BACS processing can be considered, either in-house or via a third party provider, and in-house software can also be hosted at another site in order to give resilience. A mixture of BACS and internet payment arrangements, in-house, alternative site and third party arrangements will give the elements for a solid disaster recovery strategy arrangement in respect of payroll services.

Whatever the elements of the plan that are chosen then a regular testing and review process is vital. Test payrolls need to be run from alternative site arrangements or via third party BACS if they are the chosen solution. Testing will give a business peace of mind that the backup arrangements will ensure staff payments can be made in the event of a disaster.