Alternative Takeaways with Maria Mason, Director, Employers’ Support at BDO

Here are three takeaways from Maria Mason, Director, Employers’ Support at BDO talking about how a ‘best of breed’ approach to technology has enabled BDO to develop a profitable service area that meets their clients’ new needs and expectations.

Investing in Technology

Technology investment is a widely talked about topic and is often associated with vast amounts of cost needed for results. As Maria explained they have implemented a system which within it’s first year has saved more than 10x the amount of the initial investment.

“Technology investments don’t always need to be large to make a big difference. We developed a macro for an Excel spreadsheet for one client that saved us 12 days a year. We also brought in a new AI-based system for reporting and automated billing. It was an approximately £17k investment and saved over £200k in time in the first year alone.”


“It’s unlikely you will find one system to accommodate everything. Find the best systems for each of the tasks you need, rather than looking for one system to do everything.”

Maria explained that you do not always need to look for one system to cover all your requirements, sometimes a point solution can be the best answer.

To watch Maria’s full presentation, alongside Becky Shields, Partner at Moore Kingston Smith and Adrian Rodaway, Managing Partner at HPH Chartered Accountants, at the Alternative In-House Hangout please click here.

“We went back to basics with our new payroll systems. We looked at the process from beginning to end and mapped out 25 steps. We then found the systems that best fitted that process. We ended up with two – one for smaller clients and one for larger ones with more complex payrolls – plus a dashboard that collates all the data in a single, accessible, easy-to-use interface, together with relevant payroll-related information.”


Mapping out your exact requirements before researching, purchasing and implementing a system will prove incredibly useful and ensure your technology implementation is as set up for success as it possibly can be.

Embrace Change

Change can be scary, in the current climate this is more relevant than ever. Maria stressed that making the decisions to implement and invest in new systems can help your firm stay ahead of the game, be more efficient and agile to free your teams up to work on more pressing tasks.

“Don’t let fear of change stop you from moving forward. A little suffering now can save you much greater pain in the long term. Investing in the new payroll systems has increased our productivity significantly. We’ve gone from 500 payslips to 1,000 payslips per individual. This has freed up more time to focus on higher value-added tasks, like advising clients on key legislation or compliance requirements.”

For full details of the Alternative Hangouts series please click here.