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  • Writer's pictureBuck Paolino

Simple Hotel Payroll Audit Process

Simple Hotel Payroll Audit Process

Quick Payroll Audit Steps

for Making Sure Employees Match to GL (general ledger) Account

In the bustling world of hospitality, where every detail counts, there's one secret weapon that savvy hoteliers swear by the annual payroll audit. While it may sound like just another mundane task on the to-do list, don't be fooled! Behind its unassuming facade lies a treasure trove of benefits that can elevate your hotel's success to unprecedented heights. So, why exactly should every hotel prioritize conducting a payroll audit annually? Let's dIve into the untold story and uncover the captivating reasons behind this essential practice.

Enhancing Accuracy: The Foundation of Financial Integrity

At the heart of every successful hotel lies a commitment to accuracy and integrity, especially when it comes to financial matters. Conducting an annual payroll audit serves as the cornerstone of this commitment, ensuring that every dollar spent aligns with the true value delivered by your dedicated team. By meticulously reviewing timesheets, payroll records, and coding practices, hotels can identify and rectify any discrepancies or errors, safeguarding against financial leaks and maintaining a rock-solid foundation of financial integrity.


Maximizing Efficiency: Streamlining Processes for Success

In the fast-paced world of hospitality, where every second counts, efficiency reigns supreme. By conducting an annual payroll audit, hotels can identify inefficiencies in timekeeping, payroll processing, and coding practices, streamlining processes for maximum efficiency and productivity. From automating repetitive tasks to implementing robust controls and training programs, hotels can optimize their payroll operations, freeing up valuable time and resources to focus on what truly matters: delivering exceptional guest experiences.

Fostering Financial Integrity

A payroll audit serves as a cornerstone for maintaining financial integrity within a hotel's operations. By meticulously reviewing timesheets, payroll records, and coding practices, hotels ensure that every financial transaction aligns accurately with the correct general ledger account in the hotel's chart of accounts. This meticulous attention to detail not only safeguards against errors and discrepancies but also reinforces trust and transparency in the hotel's financial statements. Employees and stakeholders can trust that the numbers accurately reflect the true financial health of the hotel, instilling confidence and credibility in the organization's financial reporting processes.


Steps to Complete a Simple Payroll Audit

In this simple 7-day process, the hotel's payroll audit unfolds in a series of meticulous steps aimed at ensuring accuracy and alignment within the financial records. It begins with the collection of timesheets and payroll records from the preceding week, accompanied by job codes and general ledger account information. A thorough review ensues, scrutinizing each employee's timesheet entries and job codes for accuracy and alignment. The audit then progresses to cross-referencing job codes with corresponding general ledger accounts to ensure proper allocation. Discrepancies are meticulously investigated, with attention given to potential causes such as employee error or system issues. Clear communication with department managers helps clarify job assignments and coding practices, ensuring consistency and accuracy. Any necessary corrections to coding are promptly made, with updates reflected in payroll systems without delay. Throughout the process, diligent documentation of audit findings and recommendations ensures a comprehensive reference for future audits and process enhancements. Finally, the audit process is repeated for an additional week to confirm the effectiveness of any implemented changes, ensuring ongoing accuracy and alignment within the hotel's financial records.

Due Date


Gather timesheets and payroll records: Collect timesheets and payroll records for the past 7 days, along with job code and general ledger account information.

Ensure all relevant documents are collected for the audit.




Review timesheets and job codes: Examine each employee's timesheet entries and corresponding job codes to verify accuracy.

Ask: Are all employees using the correct job codes? Are there any discrepancies between the time worked and the job codes assigned?



Cross-reference with ledger accounts: Compare job codes from timesheets with the corresponding general ledger accounts to ensure alignment.

Ask: Is the code for this role going to the correct GL?



Investigate discrepancies: Identify any discrepancies between timesheet entries, job codes, and ledger accounts, and investigate the root causes.

Determine if discrepancies are due to employee error, system issues, or miscommunication. (Are hotel employees set up as default job code even if that isn’t their department anymore? Can they select their department when they clock in? Do they have a default job code if they forget)



Communicate with departments: Reach out to department managers or supervisors to clarify job assignments and coding practices if needed.

Ask: Are employees properly trained in selecting job codes? Are there any changes in departmental responsibilities affecting coding?



Update coding as necessary: Make corrections to timekeeper and job codes based on audit findings and make necessary changes in payroll.

Ensure accurate coding by updating systems or software promptly. Make a change in the payroll right then, don’t wait for the payroll company to make updates. Log in and make them ASAP.


Document audit results: Record audit findings, including any adjustments made to timesheets or coding, along with recommendations for process improvements.

Documenting results provides a reference for future audits and process enhancements.


Repeat the process for 1 more week after making any changes to confirm they are resulting in the desired result.




By following these steps and keeping an eye out for the right details, you'll ensure that the time and job code entries recorded by your fantastic hotel team members line up perfectly with the correct job codes and general ledger accounts.

BONUS TIP **Also an excellent first step if you are switching payroll providers**

Payroll Audit Questions to Review

Here are a few simple questions to ask your hotel team internally when it comes to the daily operations of your hotel's payroll.

1. Are there any patterns or trends in coding errors or discrepancies? (is the same code being used at multiple hotels/ departments?)

2. Are employees consistently selecting the appropriate job codes for their tasks?

3. Is there alignment between departmental assignments and corresponding ledger accounts?

4. Are there any system limitations or inefficiencies affecting coding accuracy?

5. Can default codes be set up?

6. Is it required that every new hotel team member be set up with a default job code?

7. Does every job code match the correct GL for its department?

8. Can all payroll reports be provided in Excel by gl code and department to track and review?

Hotel Helpful Payroll Reports for Audits:

· Timesheet Summary Report: Provides a summary of all timesheet entries for the selected period, including employee names, hours worked, job codes, and any notes or comments.

· Job Code Mapping Report: Outlines the mapping between job codes and corresponding general ledger accounts, ensuring alignment and accuracy in coding.

· Employee Classification Report: Lists all employees along with their classification status (e.g., full-time, part-time, temporary), helping verify proper classification for payroll purposes.

· Payroll Register Report: Summarizes payroll data for each employee, including wages, benefits, deductions, and total compensation, aiding in verifying payroll entries against employment agreements.

· Timesheet Exception Report: Identifies any exceptions or discrepancies in timesheet entries, such as missing punches, overtime violations, or incorrect job codes, facilitating error detection and correction.

· Audit Trail Report: Tracks changes made to timesheets, job codes, or payroll entries, providing a history of modifications for accountability and review purposes.


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