Help is on the way for pastors, principals, parish bookkeepers and all others who have a hand in hiring, managing and compensating the 2,000 Church employees in the Jefferson City diocese.
Parishes and schools will soon have access to a powerful new cloud-based software for handling payroll and many other administrative tasks.
The software, developed by Paylocity, will help them comply more precisely with federal and state employment laws, streamline the process of paying their employees, and get any assistance they need from the diocese in managing payroll and human resource functions.
In short, it will free up more time and energy for preaching, teaching, welcoming and helping people in need.
“Parishes of all sizes were interested in these types of services but couldn’t afford them under the current system, which is an a la carte billing system,” said Cheryl Hertfelder, human resources director for the Jefferson City diocese.
Along with many additional functions, the software includes:
Paylocity will provide all of these services to all parishes and schools, regardless of size, for a cost they can afford.
“We did a cost-benefit analysis,” said Mrs. Hertfelder. “All but a few parishes will be paying the same amount of money or somewhat less than what they pay now, while getting a lot more in return.”
The new system will take the place of bulky file folders and complicated spreadsheets, with each employee’s relevant information being kept securely in one place.
“By going digital, we can stop clogging filing cabinets with paper,” said Mrs. Hertfelder.
It will also help with planning and budgeting.
“It has an analytic feature to help us measure turnover, overtime costs, absenteeism, and hours worked by substitute teachers so you can determine if you need another full-time employee,” Mrs. Hertfelder noted.
She said automating many of these tasks will help ensure that they’re done properly, and will free up busy bookkeepers to work on other things.
It will also make life easier for employees. A service portal will allow them to monitor their available sick leave and vacation time.
Hourly employees will be able to clock in on their phone or computer, rather than filling-in time sheets.
Paylocity is web-based, so all parishes will be able to run it with the computer equipment they already have.
It will also make it easier for smaller parishes to seek help from the diocese in handling payroll and human resource tasks.
“We’re already doing that for a dozen parishes right now,” Mrs. Hertfelder noted. “We’ll be able to help others if they ask us to do so.”
To help with the transition, the diocese will provide a two-part, in-person training on the new system for all payroll bookkeepers for parishes, schools and affiliates in the diocese.
Pastors and principals will receive a one-day virtual training on the new system.
Ongoing training and remote support will also be available.
“You learn better by doing, and you’ll have that in-person training,” Mrs. Hertfelder noted.
She pointed out that such a large transition might involve a few bumps and obstacles.
Accordingly, she urges everyone to be patient and persistent.
“Change is never easy, but this change will definitely be worth it,” she said.