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Helsinki focuses on preventing new payroll errors and reducing backlog

During November, the City of Helsinki’s payroll situation has remained largely unchanged. Uncorrected payroll errors continue to exist. In solving the payroll problems, Helsinki focuses on preventing new errors and correcting existing payroll errors.
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The payroll customer service is still receiving a high number of contacts and is backlogged. In addition to actual payroll errors, the contacts include questions concerning the fulfilment of the taxation income limit as the end of the year approaches. The payroll customer service has taken several measures to ease the backlog, and in the first week of November, the number of unprocessed contacts started to decrease.

The customer service personnel have received reinforcements and new employees have been recruited. To reduce overlapping customer service contacts, persons contacting customer service are notified of the target processing times of service requests.

Decrease in incorrect payslips

According to the latest payroll situation report (4–20 November), the proportion of incorrect payslips is decreasing. The proportion of incorrect payslips was 4.2%, having been 5.7% in October and 6.4% in September. The most recent payroll errors do not all show in the statistics yet, and the data for November will be completed at the end of the month.

Most of the errors in the monitoring period concerned underpaid salaries. These are linked to increasingly complex error situations, tax card errors and the challenges of data migration from one system to another. The number of completely unpaid wages has continued to decline, numbering a few dozen. 

As a rule, unpaid wages are paid within two working days of the issue being reported to payroll customer service. Other errors are rectified as soon as possible.

Late payment penalties start in December

Helsinki will start paying penalties for late payment and retroactive interest for late payment in December. In September, the city decided to pay interest for late payment retroactively from April 2022, without any contact required, to all employees whose wages have been late. 

In the autumn, payroll has paid the interest for late payment in connection with the correction of employees’ payroll errors.

An employee is entitled to interest for late payment in accordance with the Interest Act if the payment of wages is delayed from the proper payday. In addition to the statutory interest for late payment, the City will pay a non-recurrent and extra delinquency charge.

Investigator selected for payroll problem investigation

Mayor Juhana Vartiainen has previously stated that the city will order an external investigation of the payroll problems. After a tendering procedure, Valor, a management consultancy, was selected to conduct the investigation. The cost of the investigation is EUR 45,000 without value added tax.