PY - Payroll Calculation and Confirmation Processes - On-Cycle

This Business Process Design document will describe the internal business processes for the biweekly and unclassified on-cycle payroll for the University of Wisconsin System. Biweekly employees, who are paid every two weeks, report hours through Time and Labor, which are then loaded and processed in Payroll. Unclassified employees receive a set salary, which does not require the integration between Time and Labor and Payroll. These checks are calculated and confirmed once a month. These processes are monitored and run only by UW-Service Center staff

Procedure At-A-Glance
Category: Payroll Calculations and Confirmation
Audience: PY Coordinators, Campus staff, UW Service Center staff
Overarching Process: Payroll.
Jump To:

General Description

Calculating and finalizing checks in HRS is a Payroll operational function involving manual and automatic processes that are internal to the UW Service Center. HRS - Payroll  is a system that determines earnings, deductions, taxes, and net pay for all employees who have pay earnings in the specified pay period.  On average, each pay period (2 biweekly and 1 monthly) processes about 40,000 paychecks. 

There are several preliminary operational tasks that are conducted by all UW Service Center staff to ensure the correctness of the paychecks which include payline adjustments and error resolutions.

The payroll process consists of preliminary batch jobs (compiled coding) that are 4-5 nights in a payroll processing week. On the final day of the payroll, usually Thursday, there are final calculation, confirmation, and post confirm jobs that are run.  The Payroll team utilizes the payroll query checklist to resolve any outstanding errors that arise. Once the final calculation process has completed without any errors, the confirmation process can begin. Confirmation finalizes the calculated paycheck, so employees receive either a direct deposit or paper check.  Once the payroll has confirmed, there are a series of post-confirm jobs that are run primarily for reports.

Nearly all of these jobs are executed by a batch processing tool, which include reports that campuses receive on those employees paid and the prenote files for direct deposit data to US Bank.  Since go-live in 2011 the payroll process jobs have been largely automated and documented through the dedicated efforts of the implementation team, from many hours of work.

Process Inputs
For biweekly paid employees, the inputs are from time entry from Time and Labor data.  For both biweekly and monthly paid employees, the inputs are job information from Human Resources (e.g. pay rates, pay groups), absence information from Absence Management data, benefit deductions from Benefits data, and perhaps additional pay and retroactive pay.

Key inputs from the campuses are submission of payline adjustment requests by 4:40 pm, typically on Tuesday, and submission of FICA spreadsheets by noon,typically on Wednesday, ahead of the final calc and confirm day of typically, Thursday.

Process Outputs

The calculation of an employee's paycheck and various post confirm reports.

Process Considerations

This KB is informational only as the processes are largely automated and any manual manipulations are restricted to UW Service Center payroll staff.  During the final calc and confirm processes (typically Thursday afternoons), refraining from job data changes reduces the risks of process failures.


Exceptions, especially for deadlines and days of calculations are outlined in the Payroll Calendar.

Procedure Steps

Preliminary Operational Tasks

During the payroll week UW Service Center staff will enter in deductions, leave payouts, and other adjustments to the pay periods as well as fix exceptions, omissions, and errors (pay, benefits, leave, time and labor). Below is a typical week of tasks per day.

Monday – Thursday:  Payroll staff will check the calculation errors from the previous night’s preliminary process and emails the spreadsheet to Service Center operational staff (HR, BN, etc.).  Payroll staff will check the log files for the “orphan” process from the previous night to see if there are any anomalies that need to be fixed (e.g. blank department ID).

Tuesday:  The deadline for campuses to submit requests (via WiscIts) to add paylines to the pay period is 4:30 pm.  Payroll staff will initiate the HRS mass payline upload but this will only load in active employee data.  Terminated employee paylines are manually entered into new paylines by payroll staff by the end of day on Wednesday.

Wednesday:  FICA processing is initiated in HRS in the late afternoon after campuses submit their spreadsheets.

Thursday:  Several audits are run in the morning before the noon deadline for final calculation and confirm.

Every night for Payroll, there are 3 jobs scheduled for prenote (direct deposit data), retro payments, and work study data.

Preliminary Payroll Processes

There are two different streams of job processes for the biweekly paid and the monthly paid employees.  There are similarities but also important differences between the two.

Biweekly Preliminary Payroll

Biweekly job processes that precede the final calculation and confirmation day of processes usually begin on the Sunday night of the payroll week through Wednesday (with the final on Thursday).  Key data for biweekly employees is the data from time and labor.

Sunday:  The nightly processes load in Absence data into the Time and Labor data before the Payroll jobs start.  The first job loads in the data from Time and Labor and creates paysheets.  Subsequently, benefits prepay data and deductions load into the paysheets followed by a preliminary payroll calc which calculated the pay check for the employees.  Two reports are generated, the payroll edit report and the payroll error message report.

Monday: The first job loads in custom paylines from the campuses onto the paysheets, then there is the time and labor load into paysheets (and creating any new ones_ followed by deductions, then payline adjustments for pay or deductions, and then the preliminary calc and reports as above.

Tuesday:  This is a big night of processing as paylines are uploaded from payline requests to the Service Center, overtime, retro, and benefits prepay and retro deductions. 

Wednesday: This night mirrors Monday night's create and load paysheets that are not already created, deductions, and a preliminary calc and reports.

Monthly Preliminary Payroll

Monthly job processes that precede the final calc and confirmation day of processes usually begin on a Friday night, skip Saturday night, and continue Sunday through Wednesday nights. Key data for monthly employees is the absence management data.

Friday: The first in the payroll processes is a report that identifies any employee in an overload work situation to confirm if it is in fact accurate.  The next process creates paysheets for the pay period for both active and terminated employees.  Absence takes and deductions are loaded into the paysheets followed by a payroll preliminary calculation and the reports, payroll edit and payroll errors.

Sunday and Monday:  The same processes run both nights.  The same types of processes are run for overload, creating new paysheets, deductions, absence takes, preliminary calc and reports.

Tuesday: This night has many processes running  which include overloads, creating paysheets, pushing paylines, absence takes, deductions, prepay, and various retros to the paysheets. 

Wednesday: This night is similar to Sunday and Monday nights with overloads, creating paysheets, and loading in deductions. 

Final Calculation and Confirmation

Like the preliminary payroll processes, the final calculation and confirmation is similar for the biweekly and monthly paid employees but there are key differences.  Both types are manually monitored and run by the Service Center payroll staff usually at noon on Thursdays.  The monthly final calc and confirm payroll week is usually between the two biweekly weeks.  Exceptions are in the Payroll Calendar.

Biweekly Final Calculation and Confirmation

The first process loads all employees' time to payroll.The 11 am Time Admin jobs need to finish first. Time and Labor and Absence then check their entries after which Payroll runs the first preliminary calculation.  If there are no errors or modifications needed, the payroll team continues the remainder of the process for deductions, earning code swaps, another preliminary calculation and then, if there are no errors, proceeds with the final calculation process and the final confirmation process. In all the jobs take 5-6 hours for completion.

Automated, post confirmation jobs follow the final confirmation.These are primarily reports, some of which are sent to Cypress.  Two of the more important post confirm jobs are the earnings extract which populates the Earnings Statement and the Bank Files.

Monthly Final Calculation and Confirmation

The first process loads all employees' absence takes for the month of the payroll followed by a preliminary calculation.  If there are no errors or modifications, then deductions, earning code swap, and another preliminary calc is run.  If there are no other errors, then the payroll team proceeds with the final calculation process and the final confirmation process.  In all, the jobs take 6-7 hours for completion.

Automated post confirm jobs follow the final confirmation.  These are primarily reports, some of which are sent to Cypress.  Two of the more important post confirm jobs are the earnings extract which populates the Earnings Statement and the Bank Files.

Related Policies, Job Aids and Forms

Related Policies

Related Job Aids

Related Forms - N/A

To the top


Keywords:Payroll, Payroll Processing, On-Cycle, Confirmation, calculation, processes   Doc ID:21734
Owner:Anita T.Group:Human Resource System (HRS)
Created:2011-12-13 16:41 CDTUpdated:2016-06-24 09:40 CDT
Sites:Human Resource System (HRS)
Feedback:  1   0