I recently sat down with a prospect to discuss their payroll and what our company could do to help her out. She had been with her company for over 15 years and we laughed as we talked about the “good old days” of payroll processing.
On the ride back to the office, I continued to think more about how technology has changed in the last 20 years – especially its impact on payroll processing for companies. These are some of the memories that flashed through my head:
– I thought back to the days of DOS based software products (“green screens”) that customer service reps keyed hours into without understanding what they were doing, where it went, and how you would know what the outcome would be. Imagine the code from the movie the Matrix, but in a business setting.
– Picking up bundles of blue bar report paper from clients that had been manually filled out so they could be taken back to our office and keyed for the client, then processed and returned the next day.
– Running payroll checks that were pre-printed on perforated rolls that needed to be separated, then signed and stuffed into envelopes and having each one of these functions being accomplished by bulky mechanical machines that would break down and force the packaging department (of which there were six employees) to do all this manually.
– Being interviewed by, then owner, John Highhill in the Cutler building to work for a company that had about eleven employees, processed under a hundred clients and shared time on a mainframe computer, and being told that he thought he had a business that would keep me challenged for probably 5 years.
I contemplated these ideas as I drove back to the office:
We now have a newer building that houses over fifty employees and helps about seven hundred businesses with their payroll. My clients don’t work in paper anymore for their payrolls because everything is accessible through a smart device. And where I have been employed and challenged for over 19 years.
What a journey!