Curated by Lezé

1 February 2023


The many Hats worn by Payroll Professionals

Hat 9: The Payroll professional as moral compass

Moral duty

It often starts with a small decision. We agree to something that falls within a “grey” area, legally or ethically. Decisions that may be marginally legal, but are in principle, unethical. Then it is easier to choose the decision with least resistance. And before we know it, we have “crossed the line”, and it is too late to turn around and change the course of events.
To compound matters, we might become silent accomplices, if we don’t speak up and challenge management on these types of decisions. The Payroll professional cannot stay quiet on moral and ethical matters. Our position as moral compass, and trusted professional, is at stake.

Crossing that line

Once the line has been crossed, it is very difficult to rebuild our purity and reputation.
Please note; I am not referring to obvious, and blatant fraud, or other illegal actions. I mean those decisions that evoke the faintest feeling of unease or unhappiness inside us. It is these issues (categorized as grey areas) that demand of us an ethical assessment of the situation.

This way we can know what the right decision ought to be. It is here that the Payroll professional’s job comes to the fore. We are called to provide up-front ethical leadership. To serve as a litmus test on borderline, grey areas.


Legally right, or morally right

A decision that is legal, is not necessarily morally right. For the Payroll professional, this is often the most demanding aspect of decision-making. Sometimes the easiest option is not the right option. And decisions like these cannot be ignored. Here we as Payroll professionals are required to stand firm, knowing that while the decision being considered might be legal, it is not morally right at all. Here we are obligated to listen to our conscience and apply the “litmus” test to help with the decision.

An example: different salaries, same position.
An excellent example that comes to mind involves discriminatory remuneration practices. Salaries for employees doing the same job often varies. Despite both employees performing the exact same set of tasks and having the same job description. They produce the same (or similar) sets of results, ….yet they earn vastly different salaries!

In this case, although this may not be an illegal practice (based on the breach of some or other labour law). However, it certainly does constitute a morally reprehensible practice (based on the simple argument of moral ethics). This, and many other examples, are the kinds of questions that all Payroll administrators would do well to regularly ponder on and/or raise with their superiors.

The primary, overriding question

What ought we, the payroll professional, to be doing about this?

Here are some suggestions:

  • Gather all relevant data to support your argument towards making a morally astute decision.
  • Seek to engage with your line manager in a private meeting. Do not openly dispute the merits of the issue or contest the decision with an audience.
  • By carefully explaining the underlying rationale and showing the reasons you think a particular issue is morally and/or ethically challenging, you can calmly state your case.
  • Be ready to clearly present an alternative, suitable solution that you believe to be the right decision.
  • Expect, with positive intention, to receive a revised final outcome that (fairly) takes your positive contribution into account.

Payroll professionals as the litmus test

Remember that in these types of situations, management is well within its right to insist upon only that which is legal as the basis for decisions. The job, however, of all proud Payroll professionals, is to be the moral compass, pointing management in the right ethical direction. To make our voices heard, calmy and rationally.

The Payroll professional is the litmus test representing the values of an organisation. We are called to be brave and ethical, speaking out when necessary. Building on our reputation as the moral compass.

Coming next… A summary of the many hats worn by the Payroll professional

– Provided by Ian Hurst –

Helpdesk Tips

How to download the Statistics SA report

The Statistics SA report from Paymaster provides a report in the format required by Statistics SA that is submitted quarterly. The statistics provides data essential for estimating key economic statistics of employment and gross earnings. These economic data are used by a wide range of private and governmental organisations to monitor South Africa’s Economy. Click below for directions on how to download the Stats SA report.


How to download the Stats SA report

Please call our Helpdesk for your queries –
021 712 7333 or
WhatsApp us – 081 711 1276

UIF Declaration error fix

Code 8270

Paymaster automatically generates the UIF Declaration File on the 7th of each month and sends the file to the Department of Labour on the customer’s behalf. Sometimes one receives a UIF error message which can be fixed on the system. The UIF Declaration File can be resent to the Department of Labour by regenerating the file on the system. Click below to see instructions on this particular error message.


How to fix UIF declaration error code: 8270

Staff Bio

Meet Abigail Bester

Please meet the friendly and engaging Abigail Bester, a fairly new employee to Paymaster. Abigail processes payrolls for about 13 clients at Paymaster and is a junior payroll administrator. She is a member of team Dynamic energy and reports to Nafeesa, the office manager. Apart from her payroll duties, she is also a helpdesk agent to assist clients with any payroll related queries. She feels most at home when she listens to music. She loves singing and was even part of a choir once.

Abigail attended Sibelius High School, Steenberg in Cape Town, and went on to study Accounting at UWC, and Financial Management at False Bay College (up to N6). She is determined to complete the 3 years of her 4 year degree in the near future. She went on to work for numerous call centres, processing loans and assisting customers with their loan applications for 2 years. False Bay College facilitated her first intern job as a junior accountant for 2 years. After the covid pandemic period, Abigail found another job at a property management company, working as a bookkeeper for a year. She enjoyed this job as it was in the field that she is studying. But due to complications, she had to leave and, fortunately for Paymaster, found the Paymaster vacancy on social media.

Abigail summed up her personality as trustworthy, helpful, caring, introverted and shy. She explained, she’s an empathetic person as she knows how it feels to be alone. The lovely Abigail is a good fit for the Paymaster team. She is friendly and humble, and we know we can depend on her professionalism and passion for the field of finance.

Abigail Bio

New Product Features

New enhancements

Happy New year and welcome back!

Medical Aid Rates – 2023

We are pleased to inform you that the Medical Aid tables for 2023 have been updated on our system. However, if you have any medical aid rates that have not been updated, please email for assistance.

The below medical aid premiums have been updated effective 1 January 2023:

[read more] Best Med,
Cape Medical Aid,
Imperial and Motus Medical Aid,
Moto Health Care,
Platinum Health,
SAB Medical,
Umvuzo Health,
Health 4Me Health,
Stratum Benefits Gap Cover,
Turnberry Insurance Group,
Liberty Health (Lesotho),
Mauritius Union Insurance Medical Aid,
Liberty Health Lesotho,
Namibia Health Plan (NHP),
Namibia Medical Care (NMC)[/read]

Annual Increases

As we approach the time of year when many of you process annual increases, we remind you to follow these guidelines when capturing the increases:

Do not override the existing employee pay rate record.
Create a new pay rate record.
Increases can be captured via Employee > Payroll Processing > Pay Rate Details
Or using Bulk Actions > Action Type: Pay Rate Details

Company Cars

For those of you whose employees make use of company cars, we encourage you to update the following fields when changing vehicles:

Employee > Payroll Processing > Recurring Payroll Components > Fringe Benefits > Company Car Fringe Benefit

The ‘Determined Car Value Excluding Vat’ must be updated with the new vehicle’s value to ensure that the Fringe Benefit calculates correctly.


On Company Settings under the Leave tab, there has been an update to the below setting. When enabled, an email notification will be sent to Employee Self Service Users notifying them that leave will expire in the number of days specified.

There has been an update to the below Leave settings on Company Settings under the Leave tab. When enabled, an email notification will be sent to Employee Self Service Users notifying them that leave will expire in the number of days specified.

Config > Basic Settings > Company Settings > Leave

Please refer to ‘What’s New’ for more details.

Company Financial Statements

You can view and export your Company Financial Statement on the system by navigating to Config > Financial > Invoices and Receipts.

Any issues can be directed to


With WhatsApp

Our employee self-service bot that will assist you with your payroll and HR requests.

Pacey uses interactive WhatsApp messages, giving users a more straightforward and consistent way to select the options available, resulting in significantly higher response rates than text-based (USSD) lists.


Contact us if you want Pacey for your employees…

For more info or to request a quote

Easy and secure registration. Employees can register themselves.


Our partnership with Floatpays and Biosyn is another way that Paymaster endeavors to deliver greater value to our clients.

Your employees have most probably just experienced ‘Januworry’ – a time when financial stress often peaks. Financial stress is bad for your staff and your bottom line!

Now is the perfect time to be reminded of what employees find useful in helping them reduce their financial stress. Research conducted by our earned wage access partner, FloatPays provides some insight:

Reduce financial stress

FloatPays can help you support your employees in building financial wellness
and avoiding future ‘Januworries’.

If you like what you hear and want to get your employees on the path towards financial wellness, get in touch.

As a Paymaster partner, Floatpays is already integrated into the Paymaster payroll system, so set-up is quick and easy! Get in touch with Glen Coburn at, +27836791311, to book a free DEMO.

Book a DEMO here



Paymaster is partnering with BioSyn, to bring you the latest, and best, in Time and Attendance Systems.

A versatile clock-in system tailored to your company’s specific requirements. Access control that boosts your bottom-line, we offer excellent support, and in-depth training.

Be pro-active, and rather than policing your employees, this Time and Attendance system helps you monitor them from a unique perspective.

To find out more or for a free consultation,

contact Glen Coburn at, or call +27 836791311.

Paymaster Updates

Welcome to the payroll news updates! Here, you will find the latest updates and information on all things payroll. We’ve got you covered from employee payroll and payroll tax to payroll management and payroll software.

You’ll find the weekly and Africa updates and resources to help you stay informed and on top of your payroll responsibilities and legislative changes you should know.

Weekly updates


  • Employee Tax Drilldown | New fields added to Excel download
  • Standard payslip | ID number masked on non-confidential header
  • South Africa | Frequency Consolidation of Tax Submission File

Africa updates


  • Zambia NAPSA Ceiling Update
  • Zambia Tax Table Changes 2023
  • Ivory Coast CNPS Ceiling Increase
  • Ghana – SNNIT minimum and maximum contributions
  • Namibia – Tax Changes 2022-2023 tax deduction limit increase

Paymaster Announcement

Welcome to our “Free Payroll Knowledge” webinar series! We understand that payroll can be a complex and challenging task for small businesses, which is why we want to help. We’re excited to announce that our webinars will take place twice a month, every Wednesday at 10:00-10:30. The series will be an open discussion format, you ask any payroll question, we have the answer.

We will be announcing the details of each webinar on our social media channels, so be sure to follow us to stay updated. You can join the webinar using the link we will provide.




  • Wednesday
  • 1 February 
  • 10:00

Schedule the next webinar

  • Wednesday
  • 15 February 
  • 10:00

Who is this webinar for?

For payroll professionals increasing their skill base, or those new to this function. Or maybe you’re exploring Paymaster as a payroll option….this Webinar is aimed at all of you.

Click here to go to the previous Newsletter

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