What is payroll in HR/payroll and pay slip/importance/How to calculate

Payroll calculation is one of the most important functions of the Personnel Department and requires great care and organization. That’s because the document has several specifics and variants that need to be considered before paying employees.

But do you know all the factors that need to be included and how to calculate payroll? In this post, we remove the main doubts about the subject. Check out!

What is payroll?

It is a document that is issued by the Personnel Department every month and contains all information about amounts received and discounted from employees. Therefore, it is a way to show managers the monthly team costs .

Also, the payroll has a legal provision and is calculated based on the employees’ working hours information, including their benefits and additionals. Therefore, in the document the gross and net wages are informed , that is, the amount that appears in the workbook and the one that is actually paid after discounts and additional payments.

Therefore, calculating the payroll correctly is essential to avoid conflicts and even labor lawsuits , therefore, this task must be done carefully and very carefully.

Furthermore, the larger the company and the more employees it has, the more difficult it will be to perform the calculation. Thus, it is recommended to have automation tools that facilitate control and prevent failures .

Are payroll and pay slip the same thing?

Conceptually, the two documents are the same thing, however, we call the rendering of accounts that the company offers to the worker a payslip, that is, a summary of his/her payment.

In this sense, the payslip shows all the discounts, benefits and bases used for calculation, enabling employees to monitor their remuneration and be aware of everything that was paid and discounted.

In addition, the payslip can also be used as proof of income , for credit applications, financing and other situations.

How important is payroll?

Payroll is a tax and labor obligation for companies, so it must be generated in accordance with the law. However, the document is not only important for fulfilling obligations, it is also a way for the organization to maintain better control over employee costs.

In addition, the document is proof that the company pays all labor amounts correctly, respecting deadlines and deducting taxes due.

What items make up the payroll?

The main payroll item is the salary , that is, the amount of remuneration agreed in the employment contract . It is from this that the other benefits that make up the monthly receipt of employees are calculated.

But in addition to the salary, there are more items that make up the payroll, as we will see below.


On the payroll, you can find some fixed discounts, such as INSS, IRRF and transport vouchers, as well as others that are variable, for example, discounts for absences, delays and union dues. Let’s better explain each one of them. 


INSS is a social security benefit deducted from all CLT employees. It is a mandatory and essential contribution so that the professional can retire in the future, apply for sick pay or other social security benefit.

Also, the social security contribution is deducted based on all the employee’s salaries and the percentage varies according to the employee’s earnings .

Thus, to perform the calculations correctly, it is necessary to consult the table published by the INSS itself at the beginning of each year. When the employee earns more than the established ceiling, the limit value in the table is discounted. 


The Income Tax Withheld at Source (IRRF) is required and determined by the Federal Government, being deducted on the employee’s income.

However, its discount does not happen to all employees , as it depends on the salary amount. The rate is calculated based on the salaries of each professional, respecting the table published by the Internal Revenue Service.

Transportation vouchers

Despite the transportation voucher being a benefit offered to the worker, the company can share its costs with the employee , deducting up to 6% of the salary to represent them.

But it is important that the discount information is indicated on the pay slip and that employees are aware of this participation, since many people are unaware of the legislation.

Absences, delays and early departures

Whenever the employee is absent from work without justification, the company can deduct the value of the day and weekly paid rest (DSR) from their salary. However, it is important to pay attention to what the legislation says, as there are a number of situations in which the employee can be absent without prejudice .

In addition, the company can establish a limit of minutes in which the employee can be late and make a discount if this limit is exceeded.

union contribution

Union contribution was one of the items changed by the Labor Reform. Before, it was mandatory discounted for all employees, however, now, the discount should only happen to professionals who choose to make the contribution .


In addition to the discounts and salary agreed upon in the contract, other items that need to be included on the payroll are additional earnings, where applicable. Below, we list the main ones.

Extra hour

The overtime must be paid when the employee exceeds his journey of daily hours. The calculation of the value must be made based on the Collective Bargaining Agreement (CCT) of the category in which the professional is inserted. This means that, in the same company, the overtime hours of two employees can have different values, if they work in different sectors. 

In this case, normally, overtime on weekdays is paid 20% or 30%, while Saturdays are usually paid 50% more and on Sundays 100%.

Nighttime Additional

Employees who work between 10 pm and 5 am are also entitled to a night allowance . The addition percentage is 20% of the employee’s basic remuneration.

Additional for hazardous and unhealthy conditions

These additionals occur when the professional works exposed to a dangerous or unhealthy environment . In the case of the hazard pay, it is applied in activities considered highly dangerous, in which employees are exposed to electrical energy, flammable products or explosives, for example. The additional amount is 30% of your salary.

Unhealthy work, on the other hand, is applied in environments that are not healthy for the worker and that can harm health over the years. The additional amount varies according to the degree of unhealthy conditions to which it is exposed, and may be 10%, 20% or 40%.

How to calculate payroll?

As we have seen, payroll calculation is a painstaking task that depends on many variables. Thus, it is important that it be done by a thorough and organized person . To make the process easier, the tip is to follow a few steps.

Check the admissions and dismissal records

The first step to calculate the payroll is to check whether the company had new hires and/or dismissals throughout the month . This type of conference is very important so that there are no undue payments to those who are no longer part of the staff or delays for new employees, which can lead to dissatisfaction.

In addition, it is essential to organize the records and check if there are professionals of different categories within the company. This is because some calculation bases may vary according to the collective agreement of the category.

Close the point control

Time recording is a crucial part of the payroll calculation. For this purpose, it informs how many hours were worked by each employee and whether there is a need to pay overtime or discounts for absences and delays.

To help with this control, the company can invest in time clocks or electronic time attendance. In addition, it is worth remembering that the hours of professionals in the home office must also be controlled .

Calculate benefits and variable compensation

Not all benefits apply to all employees. Some of them can be offered according to the desire to join, such as advance payments, transportation vouchers and health plans. 

Thus, it is necessary to keep an organized file so as not to make undue discounts or not discount something necessary. Another point to keep an eye out is variable remuneration, such as sales commissions and bonuses for results.

Consider other discounts and earnings

In addition to the benefits, it is necessary to discount the INSS and IRRF, according to the current tables. Thus, it is necessary to include earnings such as overtime and overtime. 

To do this, you must calculate the employee’s hourly rate , dividing the total salary amount by the number of hours contracted. Based on the hourly rate, it is possible to arrive at the remuneration of the additional and the DSR.

When finalizing the calculations, it is important to separate the values ​​of the gross salary and the net salary , to make it clear which values ​​are due and not to make any confusion at the time of payment.

How to optimize payroll calculation?

As we have seen, the payroll calculation involves a lot of details and variables, so doing it efficiently and in an organized way can be a challenge for many companies, even more when there is a large number of employees .

To facilitate this task, the tip is to bet on management software , which have integration in the timesheet system and automate accounts, minimizing errors and losses.

Related Articles

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.

Back to top button