HR Tech Interview with John Pearce, Senior Vice President, Payroll Operations at CloudPay

Hi, John, welcome to the Interview Series. Please tell us about your journey in the technology industry and how this industry has transformed in the post-covid era.

My career began in the U.K. payroll industry prior to joining CloudPay over 15 years ago and entered the global payroll space. Throughout my career I’ve held roles in implementation, product and engineering, treasury operations and, most recently, payroll operations.

I’ve seen lots of change throughout my tenure in global payroll, most recently in the last few years when the pandemic aided in the retiring of older technologies, such as paper payslips posted to home addresses. New technologies were quickly adopted and implemented, including global earned wage access supported by instant payments using credit card rails.

Post-covid, the industry has continued to see consumers of services expect instant results and mobile accessibility. Employers are still in the midst or just recovering from the great resignation and the war for talent and are open to new ideas to attract and retain quality talent.

What is CloudPay and what are your core offerings? What kinds of business problems do you solve for your customers?

CloudPay is a leading global employee pay provider that connects all employee pay processes—including payroll, payments, and on-demand pay—through a unified platform available across 130+ countries and 168 currencies. CloudPay’s experts help global companies implement best practices, navigate change, optimize operations, and improve employee experiences, guiding them with vision and care toward the comprehensive pay experience employees deserve.

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How have the global uncertainties disrupted the payroll and on-demand compensation management processes? How does CloudPay simplify these processes?

Global economic uncertainty has caused organizations to put many processes under a microscope to optimize ROI. Payroll teams are being challenged to find ways to cut costs and make processes more efficient. Adopting updated payroll management technology is one way to achieve both of those things. CloudPay’s technology streamlines processes through automation and provides clear and robust data payroll teams need to make decisions.

Payroll management has a huge impact on the overall employee experience (EX) in any organization. Could you highlight how you see the relationship between EX and payroll processing?

Millennials and Gen Z have grown up in an era largely dominated by digital and on-demand access to everything. Younger generations, especially, believe they should have on-demand access to their wages too. Additionally, during economic uncertainty, employees want more control of their salary and the flexibility to access it for unexpected expenses. Given these employee expectations, if employers want to attract and retain talent, they must adopt payroll processes and technology that meets those expectations. On-demand access to pay also has the potential to improve employee well-being. Knowing you have access to your wages if and when you need them relieves stress. Instead of turning to credit cards, cash advances, and payday loans, employees can use their own finances and avoid debt.

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What are the key takeaways from your recently published PEI Report? Could you elaborate more on the impact of global decline in FTA?

The PEI report benchmarks payroll processing KPIs such as first-time approvals (FTA), data input issues, payroll calendar length, supplemental runs, and issues per 1,000 payslips across 130+ countries. The results are based on more than one million payslips, generated between January 1 and December 31, 2022, from businesses that use a unified payroll platform where these benchmarks can be measured.

This year’s report reveals an overall global decline in FTAs for the first time in its history, however, the United States was the only country to improve its FTA rate. The U.S. also had the shortest payroll calendar length at 2.9 days.

Despite the fall in FTAs, the PEI report reveals that payroll performance has improved overall globally, largely driven by tech innovation and better integration with Human Capital Management Systems (HCMs). This connection provides a united approach throughout the entire pay process, leading to greater efficiencies from payroll to payment.

A 3.6% reduction in payroll data input errors was noted worldwide, with the United States leading in improvements with a 10.32% reduction in issues noted last year. Issues per 1,000 payslips also fell to a global average of 8.64 – the lowest rate ever recorded by the PEI.

How could companies like CloudPay modernize the overall pay experience and efficiency? Are you working with AI and automation capabilities to achieve these?

CloudPay is leading the charge in modernizing the pay experience because of our range of integrated employee pay solutions that are fast, flexible, and certain. Using automated processes to reduce manual intervention and errors, we help companies shorten their payroll calendar saving time and money. Additionally, we offer end-to-end visibility of payment processes to ensure people are paid accurating and on time. Customers have 24/7 access to analytics and reports giving them the data they need.

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On a lighter note:

Burn the midnight candle or soak in the sun?

  • Soak in the sun

Coffee, or Tea?

  • Both

Your favorite Foundit feature you want everyone to try out?

  • Not sure.

First memorable experience in your career as a technology leader?

  • Doing my first live presentation to peers in the industry at an industry event, extremely nervous to the point of feeling sick.

One thing you remember about your employee (s):

  • The good things customers say to me about our employees, our jobs are all about delivering a service, supported by technology, to our customers and their employees. Tech makes it possible, Cloudees make it happen!

Most useful app that you currently use:

  • Vivino

Thank you, John ! That was fun and hope to see you back on HR Tech Series soon.

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John leads CloudPay’s payroll and treasury services teams, focusing on accurate and timely delivery. John has a proven track record of transforming global payroll delivery from small to large scale projects and is laser focused on helping our customers realize the full potential of the CloudPay solution.

Employee pay processes have broad business consequences, requiring modern solutions and trusted experts across the globe. CloudPay connects all employee pay processes – including payroll, payments, and on-demand pay – through a unified platform available across 130+ countries, and 168 currencies. CloudPay’s experts help global companies implement best practices, navigate change, optimize operations, and improve employee experiences, guiding them with vision and care toward the comprehensive pay experience employees deserve.

CloudPayEmployee ExperiencesHR Tech InterviewHuman Capital Management Systemspayment processespayroll management