Payroll Essentials - User Testimonial 4

Cambrette Care and Nursing Services

Together with my wife Beth, I purchased Cambrette Care and Nursing Services(Cambrette) in August 2008. Cambrette is a registered Nursing Care provider, providing both a range of Care packages in the Community and also relief Staff for Hospitals and Private Nursing Homes. It employs up to 40 members of staff working different shifts and variable hours at numerous different clients and locations throughout a working week.

Having worked in Finance for over 20 years it had always been an ambition of mine to run my own business. When this opportunity came along, we realised that our skill mix blended perfectly with the current owners. Beth is a Registered Nurse who had previously worked for Public Health in Registration and inspection – dealing directly with the Nursing Home/Nursing Agency sector – and had most recently spent six months as the registered manager of a private Care Home. I was senior Manager for an Independent Wealth Management Company and had responsibility for the Operations of the Fund Department. After many lengthy meetings and negotiations lasting several months we finally ended up buying the business.

I had obviously viewed the various methods which the previous owner used for the company records. Nearly all of the company records were held using standalone excel spreadsheets. Payroll on one spreadsheet. Payslips on another spreadsheet. Invoices were produced using QuickBooks with some larger clients having a breakdown of shifts on another spreadsheet. There was a massive amount of duplication going on for the same data. Duplicating key strokes is not only time consuming but clearly open to input error. There is also the risk of paying staff for work they did not do or paying more than one member of staff for the same shift. This is also true of the invoicing system whereby shifts may be missed off a clients invoice and therefore not charged.

I realised the key to managing all of this data and making it work successfully was to ensure that the data was only input into a system once. I did not know whether such a system existed, however was put in touch with Peter Fergusson of Software Essentials by a mutual friend, who had worked with them previously.

I met Peter at his office and explained who Cambrette were, what we did, and I was looking for in a system. Thankfully Peter’s attitude was “anything’s possible”. I think that came with the Caveat “with enough time and resources”

Peter and I then went through every aspect of Cambrette’s business, breaking it down into exact detail of all of the information which required capturing and how all the pieces fitted together.

I was initially shown Payroll Essentials –the module for payroll and staff records - and immediately felt comfortable with the design, layout and usability of the product. I had previously viewed a rival payroll system in Jersey which was complicated and confusing, and felt relieved that Payroll Essentials not only could deliver what I was looking for, but in a way that made it logical and easy to use.

I was then shown Time Billing Essentials where all of the Time billing was housed and shown how simple it was to enter the data, which would then flow through into invoices and wage slips. Again the simplicity of entering the data is what I immediately liked about it.

We then worked together over a number of weeks in order to make the adjustments which I was looking for in order to make things work for me.

Unfortunately with all the manual intervention and being new to running a business I was unable to make the time to install the systems immediately after I had purchased it. Thankfully Software Essentials were fantastic and realised that I was not using the system which I had helped design and pay for, and they helped me load on all the static data which helped me to get started.

I have used the system for 12 months now and have never looked back. I have a bespoke Payroll/Billing service which integrates Social Security/ITIS GST and a link to QuickBooks, all of which requires only one data entry. Fantastic.

Paul Gicquel


Cambrette Care and Nursing Services

February 2011

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