Unsung heroes of payroll – meet our IPP support team

payroll support
By Anthony Wolny | 27th May 2020 | 12 min read

COVID-19 has resulted in a vast range of changes for payroll professionals which has subsequently created a huge demand for support.

To get a better understanding of how our award-winning support teams are going the extra mile to meet this demand, we caught up with our Professional Services Manager, Eanna Cullen.

Could you start by telling us a bit about your role and department?

As the Professional Services Manager for our IRIS Payroll Professional software (IPP), I'm responsible for the training and support teams which is slightly unusual but has a lot of advantages.

I’m able to have visibility over client onboarding and the post-go-live support, ensuring we offer the best possible end-to-end service.

It's also worth stating that since I strictly manage our IPP product, which is designed for bureaux and accountants, the support my team offers is completely tailored to those with multiple payrolls.

It requires us to have an incredibly quick call answer time (10-25sec) and we aim to resolve 60% of support questions on the first call.

But if the query requires longer, we simply take the issue away so in the meantime our customers can focus on their other payrolls. 

How has COVID-19 impacted your department?

The impact has been massive which I suppose is the same story for most support teams.

Because the COVID-19 rules are constantly being reworked over and over again, we're receiving a huge influx of calls.

Also, to adhere to the social-distancing guidance that was released, we’ve had to make drastic changes and move our entire team from the office to their homes without breaking service.

To support the move, we’ve trained people via video link, sourced a wide array of equipment, got everyone home and most importantly ensured that the team was safe. 

How has your department risen to the challenge of COVID-19?

A lot of people within the team are taking on support cases outside their comfort zone.

We have 'product champions' for each area of the software and typically when we're in the office we can ask those champions for support with features that we may not be familiar with.

But in a bid to continue providing the best and quickest service the team is pushing themselves, enhancing their knowledge and taking on request that they usually wouldn't.

Also, the team has remained calm and level-headed regardless of the stress the pandemic is creating to ensure we’re providing customers the best possible service.

What measures have you taken to ensure business as usual?

Prior to the pandemic, we all sat in the same area, so we mainly communicated in person.

However, now we're relying on Microsoft Teams and emails, especially to continue training the team.

Every Friday morning one of our 'product champions' will run a virtual training session to upskill the team, helping everyone as previously mentioned work outside their comfort zone. 

Has the department taken any proactive measures to support customers throughout this uncertain period?

We extended our support hours from 9:00-17:30 to 8:30-18:00 between April and May.

The combination of payroll year end and the COVID-19 pandemic meant we had a huge demand for support and the added time enabled us to deliver.

Additionally, another measure that was taken was the creation of support videos and documents that guide payroll professionals.

Our team tries to predict challenges associated with new legislation/updates and proactively creates support content, so the resolution is immediately available. 

Do you have anything to add?

We're aiming to bring you the latest advice on every change of rules and we're responding as quickly as we can so you can continue to do your job.

In the meantime, you can find the latest advice here on our Support Hub and you can also check out our first blog that delved into our product team here.