MidlandHR’s flexible payroll outsourcing service gives Care UK peace of mind

Care UK has chosen a flexible payroll service, part of MidlandHR’s wider HR Outsourcing (HRO) provision, to ensure it meets the ongoing operational and strategic challenges of rapid growth and acquisitions.
Having acquired Southern Cross Residential Care Homes in 2011, Care UK needed to ensure continuity of care for 2,600 residents across 26 Southern Cross homes. With an extra 1,800 employees to pay, the health and social care services provider required an expert payroll service that was seamless, transparent and could be up and running within a six week implementation window.
Chris Grainger, Head of HRIS at Care UK explains: Selecting MidlandHR’s fully outsourced end to end payroll service gave Care UK the breathing space needed to manage change and correct inconsistent processes inherited upon acquisition. With a continuous pipeline of acquisitions increasing headcount by as little as 250 or as much as 3,000, a highly scalable, payroll service was vital whilst transitioning employees and managing change internally.
“MidlandHR listened to our requirements and designed a service level agreement which provides the flexibility of a professionally run payroll with freedom to switch between service levels with as little as one month notice. This is allowing us to grow organically, safe in the knowledge we can rely on MidlandHR’s payroll expertise to support us. Other payroll providers couldn’t offer such an agile and reliable approach to rapid change.”
Grainger continues: “At any one time, our nine payrolls can be operating at different service levels. Our payroll team at MidlandHR has to react quickly to required changes, transitioning the service in a very short time scale, making flexibility key to our successful partnership.”  
Care UK’s primary objective was originally to transfer all of its employee data onto a single system, eliminating disparate systems, many of which had been inherited upon acquisition. However, as Care UK has continued to grow, scalability, access to workforce information, and standardisation of best practice HR and payroll processes have become vital. This has led the organisation to adopt a flexible payroll outsourcing service whilst utilising MidlandHR’s cloud-based iTrent solution which gives the ability to scale up and down as required, have all its data in one place, and take full advantage of MidlandHR’s expertise.
MidlandHR’s managing director, Declan McGrath, explains: “Our partnership with Care UK has evolved alongside their business requirements. Flexibility in meeting the organisation’s fluctuating demands has been a key factor in the relationship’s success.”
Grainger concludes: “MidlandHR’s managed service has proven to be a low risk and resilient solution for Care UK. This could not have been highlighted more when one of our Technical Managed Services’ suppliers recently went into administration. It is very reassuring to Care UK that there would be no impact on our people and the move to the MidlandHR hosted service ensures that payroll operates seamlessly.
“MidlandHR is playing a pivotal role throughout our transitional phase and will continue to be a strategic partner as our payroll and HR project progresses further. With 17,000 employees currently and growth plans to acquire/grow to be 23,000 employees within the next three years, the strategic move to MidlandHR’s payroll outsourcing service is giving us peace of mind that we have second to none expertise available, alongside the flexibility and support to ensure we achieve our strategic goal – to be the number one care provider in the UK.”