William Grant aligns payroll globally

EXCLUSIVE: William Grant and Sons has completed the first phase of a global alignment of its payroll systems.

The distiller, which manufactures drinks brands such as Glenfiddich, Hendrick’s and Tullamore Dew, employs 1,700 employees across Asia, Australia, Europe, the US and the UK.

Gary Brewer, head of reward and organisational development at William Grant and Sons, said: “We’ve grown over the past few years, continuing to expand into various different countries.”

The organisation’s historical payroll system included an in-house system in the UK for around 1,000 employees and a partly in-house arrangement for staff in the US. The remainder of its global employees were paid using between six and ten different payroll providers.

Brewer added: “We now have got to the point where we’ve got enough scale and it’s time to think about a more consolidated approach.”

William Grant and Sons began the project at the end of 2012, going out to tender and contacting a range of the large payroll providers. These were whittled down to a shortlist of providers that came in to the organisation’s head office to present.

The first phase, which is currently being rolled out with provider ADP, covers Australia and parts of Europe and Asia.

Its second phase, which covers the remainder of Asia and Europe, will be rolled out in 2014.

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“It is not hugely visible to employees,” said Brewer. “At some point, we will get into the realms of whether their payslip look any different. But it probably won’t. The content [will] stay pretty much the same too.

“But we now have one point of contact as opposed to going around to half a dozen individual providers that we had before. As we bring the other tranches in, that’s where we’ll see the real benefit, with the economies of scale.”