Our next Q&A features Samantha Mann, senior policy & research officer at cipp (Chartered Institute of Payroll Professionals).  She’ll be giving an essential legislative update in the Business & Finance Theatre on both days of the show, sharing the latest information on the Minimum Wage, IR35, Automatic Enrolment and PAYE.

How did you get in to the profession?

Like so many professionals who find themselves working within Payroll, I rather fell into it as it formed a small part of a job as training Branch Manager for a retail chain.  Processing the weekly wages for the shop staff rapidly became the task I enjoyed most in a varied role and one that I continued to seek out, increasingly, as I took on other jobs.

What’s the most challenging aspect of your job?

Staying up-to-date is by far the biggest challenge.  The once constant, that can be relied upon in payroll, is change, however the pace of change and the range of subjects that a payroll professional now has to cover is immense and so staying abreast of all that change is becoming an almost daily challenge.

And the most rewarding?

Contributing to the development of new policy, legislation and services that impact the Payroll profession by being able to share the experience our members have, of different issues, and then seeing those issues make a difference is immensely rewarding but it is rare that you receive that confirmation.  On a daily basis, the reward comes from being part of a team that serves a busy profession.

What do you see as key trends for the accounting sector in the coming years?

I can’t imagine I will be alone in acknowledging the impact that digital is having and will continue to have in our space.  For payroll professionals this journey began, on a large scale, with the introduction of online filing, which rapidly saw Real Time Information come along to take its place.  Whilst technically not digital, the impact of digital builds so much on government having access to real time data – increasingly its presence is being felt as new government policies are introduced, more recent examples include the Apprenticeship Levy.

Enforcement and compliance across all business heads of tax and increasingly employment rights, and obligations, with continue to challenge the accounting sector as the government look to narrow the tax gap and maintain a flexible and adaptable UK workforce.

How important is Accountex to you and the sector?

Payroll as a service line is more than strong enough, and demanding, to be standalone and yet it still forms an important, albeit in some cases poorly valued, part of other accounting and bookkeeping service delivery.  As such, an event such as Accountex that brings together all keys services for employers, businesses and the professionals and agents that serve them is invaluable.

What do you want visitors to take away from your session?

An enthusiasm for payroll and a recognition of the challenges that present themselves to professionals who work in our sector, not only for the current tax year but for the tax years that lay head of us.

Who or what inspires you to be even better?

This is a predictable answer that probably every one taking part has said, but my Mum – her faith in me always inspired me to want to be better and better – her complete belief in me made me want to achieve more – and even when I didn’t feel I had achieved it – she saw something that I didn’t and that faith and pride continues to be an inspiration.

What’s the best advice you’ve ever been given?

Keep smiling – no matter what happens – keep smiling.

Tell us a fun fact about yourself that most people don’t know:

I became a Grandma in January 2017 and have since discovered a whole new way of looking at the world…through the eyes of my Granddaughter!  In doing so, I have discovered that ‘wiggling and giggling’ is really good exercise.

See Samantha at Accountex 2018

For session details and timings, please visit: www.accountex.co.uk/speaker/samantha-mann.

To register for a free ticket to attend, please visit https://eventdata.uk/Visitor/Accountex.aspx?TrackingCode=ACX108.

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