Five Key Takeaways from ‘Conversations with Certino and Vialto Partners’

29 September 2022 | Compliance, Global Mobility, Shadow Payroll, Technology

Five Key Takeaways from ‘Conversations with Certino and Vialto Partners’

Richard McBride

This week, we hosted a live event in collaboration with Vialto Partners, exploring the challenges facing businesses in an increasingly globally mobile world and the solutions to these. Read on to discover more about the conversation our founder, Richard McBride, had with Strategic Global Mobility Advisor Siobhan Cummins, Certino’s Client Services Director, Ada Yang, Chief Growth Officer, Vialto Partners, Samir Mammadov and Partner at Vialto Partners, Shawn McGrath. Here are our five key takeaways but if you’d like to watch the conversation in full, you can watch it here.

Proper Global Mobility (GM) provision is no longer optional

In recent years, there has been an increasing move towards the globalisation of business as remote work has become more feasible and the traditional office structure less rigid. The COVID-19 pandemic, and its aftermath over the past three years, have accelerated this trend as remote working became the norm, and workers increasingly chose to reevaluate their work/life balance.

Currently, around 2-3% of the global workforce is made up of globally mobile workers and this is predicted to increase exponentially in the next five years to 40-60%, as remote work becomes easier and more widely accepted. 

In concrete terms, this means that more organisations are having to implement a shadow payroll to help them navigate a more complex tax landscape and remain compliant with constantly changing international regulations. 

This provides a huge opportunity to GM providers, who are well positioned to provide a vital service to businesses as they transition to global models of working. Given 42% of businesses are concerned about complying with international tax laws and social security obligations, proper implementation of a shadow payroll must be a priority to ensure compliance with these shifting requirements.

Technology offers the key to unlocking shadow payroll

But this poses the question: how can a shadow payroll be implemented in the most effective way possible?

Shadow payroll is often left behind, as it is a costly, labour-intensive process which - due to its complexities - often requires a specific team to manage. This means it has very much been the last piece of the puzzle, and has been left behind in the wave of digital disruption that has hit the GM industry. 

Technology and automation can be - and have been - applied to so many facets of GM to improve outcomes for global organisations, but shadow payroll has not been included in this tech revolution. The Big 4 have even attempted to address it but this resulted in cumbersome, costly technology. There is a real opportunity to overcome these difficulties using the right technology.

This is where the Certino platform differs from previous attempts. It employs simple APIs to enable plug-and-play functionality, with no impact on existing functions, and offers businesses comprehensive global coverage and fast feedback, to hugely simplify the shadow payroll equation.

Automate shadow payroll to support your internal teams, as well as your clients

Of course, many businesses will ask if they need this technology. The easy reasoning is that existing payroll structures work, so why reinvent the wheel?

There is, however, an extremely strong business case to be made for GM automation. At the simplest level, digitisation transforms days & weeks of professional time into minutes. Processes that were previously performed manually - with an industry standard return time for payroll calculations of three days - can now be executed in moments. 

But the benefits of automation are also wider-ranging and less tangible. There is no room for errors when payroll calculations are automated, and the increased speed of reporting results in reduced timeliness penalties, and a reduced chance of reputational damage from potential fines or penalties. 

Additionally, taking a time-consuming, simple task away from humans frees them up to focus on work that is more fulfilling and is more valuable to their careers. Employee satisfaction can make or break a business’ success and, so, enabling employees to focus their energy on projects they see value in - and removing more menial tasks - can create a far more efficient work environment, without resorting to extreme measures.

Data security is a priority for global organisations

In today’s interconnected world, we rarely go long without hearing of a company suffering a data breach, and businesses are constantly under attack from malicious actors. When managing money, data security is of the utmost importance to ensure these threats are mitigated to the greatest extent possible. 

This is why Certino’s platform is based on an entirely dataless model: Certino itself has no access to its clients’ data, which greatly reduces risk of security breaches.

We support a fully encrypted end-to-end data flow. From the moment the data enters our system, it is encrypted and never stored at rest. That means that throughout our systems, no one in Certino can ever access the data. Furthermore, our logging is fully obfuscated, which means not even our engineers have the ability to interrogate the data itself.

This ensures the security of our platform, and the safety of our clients’ data.

Your business’ size doesn’t matter. We scale to suit your needs

Previously, the concern around automating shadow payroll processes has been around their ability to scale with international operations. This can go both ways as companies look to scale up and tone down their operations in the countries they work in, depending on their needs at the time, and adjust their shadow payroll accordingly. 

One aim of the Certino platform is to provide value for organisations across the board: from small international businesses all the way up to the biggest businesses employing tens of thousands of professionals overseas. There is currently no practical limit to the number of shadow payroll calculations the Certino platform can process at one time, with its current processing power able to manage 50,000 of these in one chunk, with a roadmap in place to expand this power as needed. 

This roadmap goes beyond simple processing power, though, as our team of international tax experts continues to add new countries to our systems, to enable businesses to expand as they see fit. We currently offer full coverage of 93 countries, with 30 more in the pipeline. Additionally, thanks to the nature of the Certino platform, new countries can easily be integrated to suit an individual client’s needs.

If you would like more information on Certino, please get in touch with Becky Weafer here.
If you would like more information on Vialto, please get in touch with Shawn McGrath here.
Or watch the full webinar here.


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