CashFlows; one of the UK’s leading merchant account service providers; were searching for a cloud-based HR system that could grow and scale in line with their rapidly expanding business.
As an FCA-accredited ‘electronic money institution’, they required an intuitive system could that be successfully utilised by employees and managers alike, relieving the day-to-day HR administrative burden of running a financial services business.
CashFlows specialise in the acquisition and issue of credit card payments. Founded in 2010, they offer merchant account services to customers across both the UK and the wider European Economic Area (EEA).
FCA-accredited since 2011, they became one of the first independent UK payment institutions to be accepted as a principal member of both Visa and Mastercard.
Operating from their head office in Cambridge, CashFlows aim to support businesses of all sizes with online payment solutions, spanning a diverse range of industries including financial services, digital entertainment, public and entertainment, and online retail.
Their organisation is continually growing, with their original headcount of 68 employees now evolved to 150 and counting.
Before IRIS HR Professional
Prior to CashFlows introduction to IRIS HR Professional, their HR team consisted of one full-time HR specialist, supported by a part-time shared administrator. They freely admit that their HR administration was chaotic, with the entire department run from paper forms and spreadsheets. With ambitious growth plans in place, CashFlows recognised that their current HR processes would not continue to be fit for purpose within their growing company.
Melanie Sinclair; HR Business Partner; and Jayne Oates; Executive Director, People & Performance; both state that the HR team struggled primarily with the constant duplication of time and effort that the paper-based system required. As a result, much time was spent on keeping files up to date, and on small manual jobs that did not contribute positively to the overall productivity of the company.
Jayne explains: “As a highly-respected company within the FinTech space, it was important that we implemented a high-tech solution to tackle our HR administration, that also represented an investment in our people solutions equivalent to our development of payment solutions for our customers.”
CashFlows have always striven to make a significant investment in their company infrastructure in order to deliver their industry-leading payments platform service. As a business, they consider themselves to be highly cost-effective, fast, scalable and secure.
It was therefore no surprise that, when it came to searching for an HR system, they required one which complemented these core values and qualities.
When looking for the perfect system, CashFlows primarily concentrated their search for potential suppliers to undertaking thorough research at the CIPD software show in Manchester.
They attended this annual event armed with a list of the key functionality that they expected their new HR solution to deliver. Jayne explains that their primary requirement was to obtain a system with a simple user interface and back office, the right functionality, and crucially, at the right cost to CashFlows as a business.
She says: “We needed a simple costing system (e.g. priced per employee), and were therefore considering software that did not come with massive implementation costs. We simply did not have budget to absorb any large upfront costs, so we were thrilled when we discovered that IRIS HR Professional was priced per employee.”
Why IRIS HR Professional?
CashFlows primarily chose IRIS HR Professional for its extensive functionality, value for money premise, and low initial set-up costs. The key price positioning also enabled IRIS HR Professional to stand out from the other suppliers considered by CashFlows.
Jayne comments: “We thought from the beginning that the system looked great, and the ease of functionality leant itself well to our employees at every level.
“We love the fact that with IRIS HR Professional, you can initially set up the basic functionality required, such as the HR module, and then add on additional modules as our business and its’ needs grow. For example, since we signed with IRIS HR Professional in January 2016, we have added on both payroll and recruitment modules.
“The key for us was the ability to add these modules when we felt we were ready for them, rather than having to buy into a large selection of functionality that we would not have initially needed.”
Due to the complex legislative requirements that operating within the financial industry commands, CashFlows find IRIS HR Professional’s ability to support compliance and auditability tracking a major plus point of the system. It enables them to run detailed reports that can demonstrate that teams and individual employees alike are up to date with all current legislation and training requirements.
Jayne says: “The financial services sector is incredibly heavily regulated, and IRIS HR Professional supports us in ensuring that we remain compliant with current legislation 100% of the time.”
Melanie comments: “IRIS HR Professional is a brilliant self-service system, which allows us as a business to focus our time, energy and attention on other areas.”
CashFlows have noticed a huge saving in time, efficiency and finances since implementing IRIS HR Professional. They now enjoy a single point of data entry, as the system directly feeds through to their payroll processor, and means that any issues or errors flagged can be rectified well in advance of the payment date. Payslips can be downloaded directly via self-service, and no unnecessary paper forms are required for holiday requests or approvals as the workflow is automated.
Employees can also edit and manage their own records, allowing them to manage their own expectations around personal information, and freeing up the HR team to manage more important tasks. The self-service element of the system has also enhanced the relationship between managers and employees, re-educating them on the importance of technology when interacting with colleagues and managing records going forward.
The reporting area of the system is quick and easy for CashFlows Exec team to access, manage and run reports on all areas of company performance from. Cost of absence and salary ranges are most frequently accessed reports by the CashFlows Exec team.
Crucially, Jayne now has the time to devote herself to vital HR positioning and strategy within the business, rather than dealing with numerous time-consuming admin tasks. She says: “Now that the system is up and running, it works perfectly. Everything runs exactly as it should, with minimal input needed from the wider HR team.”
“The onboarding process for new staff members is extremely quick and easy. The automation element is great – we used to swear by email reminders to deal with all aspects of onboarding, but we now have a fully automated process that caters to all of our new starters. Automated reminders, ‘read and accept’ prompt functions, and workflows all enable us to keep on top of crucial employee admin.”
“The Recruitment module is brilliant. Users can transition from candidate to employee status at the click of a button, saving us a huge amount of time and effort. It has streamlined our wider recruitment processes across the whole company.”
She continues: “The IRIS HR Professional support team are also fantastic – they always reply to any queries or problems promptly, and we never have a problem reaching them. Complex issues; on the rare occasions that they arise; are always resolved in a timely manner.”
CashFlows ultimately value partnership over and above all else, and their continued growth has been fuelled by a willingness to adapt to evolving customer needs whilst reinforcing strong strategic partnerships. Their ongoing alliance with IRIS HR Professional is testament to this.