Embark Group is a fast-growing, diversified, financial services business and one of the leading retirement solutions providers in the UK. They operate successfully in both the advised and institutional areas of the retirement market through their leading range of pension, investment platform, research and consultancy services.

Here they share their experience of using PBS Accord.


What challenges have the payroll team at Embark Group faced in recent times?

The payroll team at Embark Group is headed up by Jane Heppleston, who handles the payroll duties for over 700 employees, which amounts to seven different payrolls.

The pandemic resulted in all employees at Embark Group having to work from home, and as Heppleston comments, “it was challenging for the whole industry.”

Another challenge has been the legislative changes, including IR35. Heppleston says: “We’ve had to have a good payroll system in place to keep everything up to date and be ready for all those changes.”

So how has PBS Accord helped the payroll team at Embark Group deal with these challenges?

Easy to use and learn

The payroll team at Embark Group has appreciated just how easy PBS Accord is to use. “The system is very easy to use,” says Heppleston. “I’ve used various payroll systems, over my 30-year career, and I find PBS Accord very easy to use and userfriendly. For instance, it’s really easy to add the wage types or take them off. RTI submissions are also straightforward.”

The task of uploading templates has also been particularly easy. “Once you’ve got your template, it’s easy to import and export data.”

But was the system also easy to pick up and learn? Heppleston adds: “As long as you know what you’re doing with payroll, it’s easy to learn. I picked it up within a month of using it.”

Speed of processing

The time it takes to process payroll is vitally important to Embark Group, to ensure their employees are paid in good time.

Heppleston says: “Processing is good. Once you’re signed in, the payroll processes really quickly.”

Dealing with P11Ds

P11Ds put a lot of payroll teams under pressure, with the added burden of fines if they are submitted late. However, the P11D service from PBS is designed to make submission easy and painless, as Embark Group have experienced.

“It was easy, I filled in the spreadsheets and sent it across. Once sent over, they were back in good time as well as submitting the data over to HMRC.”

Excellent support from the service desk

To deal with any challenge, it’s important to have a great team behind you, and the payroll team at Embark Group has appreciated the knowledgeable support from PBS.

Heppleston says: “Your payroll support is second to none. I just pick the phone up and your support team is there for me every time. What they don’t know is not worth knowing. You have excellent support all-around, including your account management.”

Future process improvements

While integrations are currently out of scope, going forward, the payroll team at Embark Group is looking at process improvements. “Budget-depending, we’re considering adding some of your automated functionality to help streamline our processes,” says Heppleston.

Finally, would you recommend PBS Accord to other organisations?

“Definitely, I would recommend PBS Accord to any company.”