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Payroll Tip: Get Ready for Back to School

Get Ready for Back to School

With the summer winding down, it means one thing — it’s back to school season! While you might not be signed up to take any classes this fall, it’s possible that a portion of your part-time and seasonal workers are. To help keep in touch with your seasonal workers during the off-season, now is the perfect time to make sure your employee records are accurate and up-to-date.

Verifying Employee Information

Though it doesn’t hurt to double-check what you have on file for all of your employees before you start to prepare for year-end, it’s especially important to make sure that you have the correct contact information for your seasonal workers. Gathering current addresses — permanent mailing addresses, PO boxes or wherever it may be they can receive their mail — will save you from the future headaches of tracking down where to send W-2s or ACA returns. Since moves happen and things could change between now and year-end, you should also verify phone numbers and email addresses so that you can get in contact with these employees if needed.

While you’re making sure that you have the correct contact information, you may also want to verify the rest of the information that you have on your employee record. Even though a social security number might not change, a name might, or there could be a difference between a name in the company file and the employee’s legal name. Even simple errors like a typo can cause problems when wrapping up the year and W-2s don’t match an employee’s name.

Updating Your Records

he best process for verifying employee information will depend entirely on the size and structure of your business. For smaller firms, you might just try calling each individual employee or having them fill out a form when they come in to collect their paychecks. At larger firms, you may want to send an email asking employees to confirm their legal name, mailing address and phone number — though for security reasons, you shouldn’t collect any banking information or social security numbers in this way.

Once your employees submit their information, check it against what you have in your system and update where necessary. If you notice any significant changes, like an employee provided a completely different name, you may want to follow up with that employee to verify what’s correct.

In the end, try to find the process that works for you. You know your company best. Even though it might take time for you and your employees now, verifying this information is going to save everyone from frustration later on.