The cost of illegal software

Illegal software has many tempting features. Fully purchased programmes, particularly those in specialist niches, can cost an incendiary fee and licensing agreements may not cater for the amount of IT equipment a purchaser may have wished to install the software on. However, the cost of being caught far outweighs this; the result could be civil or even criminal proceedings from the company who owns the software’s copyrights. This is worrying as, a lot of the time, a company may not be aware if they are in accidental breach of their software license and may accidentally, and perhaps unjustly, end up with huge fines or criminal charges against them.

The chances of being caught using illegal software can be quite high too as one of the most diligent watchdogs currently operating is the Business Software Alliance (BSA); their members include Microsoft, Adobe, Apple, Macromedia, Symantec, Veritos, Dell, IBM and more. It probably takes little imagination to conceive how powerful this alliance is and how seriously it takes licensing breaches.

The BSA, as an organization, regularly communicates with corporations, governments and other important bodies but, as well as an obvious degree of influence, they also spend a fair amount of time collating data and information regarding suspected pirates. The BSA regularly performs audits on companies and administers fines where necessary. If a company are unable to provide correct licensing proof they are susceptible to fines even though in many instances they would have to actively volunteer information for the auditors who may not be legally entitled to see it.

If, for whatever reason, a company has found themselves in breach of the law, intentionally or otherwise, there are some actions that can be undertaken to combat any potential trouble they may find themselves in. The first is retrospective purchases of the appropriate licensing which will keep away any legal problems in the future. However, it may be wise, instead of doing this, to undertake some pre-emptive action to make sure a business never finds itself on the wrong side of the law.

One way of doing this is through an Asset Management service which is designed to carry out audits on all computers connected to a network. For obvious reasons it is better that the audit is carried out by such a service rather than the BSA. Although it may cost a reasonable fee to have a specialist consultant carry out this task, and then to implement all suggested changes, this cost is by some degree better than receiving a criminal or civil offense warning. Similarly, savings could be made as a consultant would be able to review all existing agreements, their value for money and recommend perhaps better options.

Due to the huge fines that can be accrued it is imperative to have an effective Software Asset Management scheme in place. The development of such a scheme allows for companies to develop and implement procedures and policies which will help optimize software assets as well as monitoring when a company’s agreement may expire and when they are eligible for new upgrades. The scheme also helps maximize money invested by highlighting the costs and benefits that come with the software utilized.

The benefits include being able to see when software is being paid for but not used, allows for a more solid business base as business functions will not be undertook by unlicensed or illegal software, and ensures that there is no accidental duplication of software.

Payroll solutions that can make you money

There are few things than deplete an employee’s morale more than, having worked hard for a month, receiving an inaccurate wage which does not reflect their own levels of commitment. Be it late, or too little, wages not paid properly can make workers question all areas of their business, not least the competency of those who provide his checks. Similarly, an employee could wonder if perhaps he was paid incorrectly due to the fact that the company could be in financial bother or, perhaps, maybe the employee is about to receive some bad news regarding his own position within the organization.

With this in mind businesses do their utmost to maintain a high level of accuracy in respect to their payrolls. They can do this in a number of ways either in house or by outsourcing their payroll to a company who specialises in this field. Out sourcing is undertaken for a number of reasons; firstly to avoid the worker dissatisfaction described above but also to steer clear of legal ramifications for inaccurate accounting and also to clear up more time within a company’s schedule to concentrate on creativity and productive areas of the company’s business. For all these reasons and more it is highly important that a company’s infrastructure is based around an accurate and fair payroll.

The importance of compensation based pay

Whilst, as mentioned before, few things are more likely to demoralize a client than inaccurate pay the opposite is also true. After a month’s hard work if an employee is fiscally rewarded for his hard work they will, in turn, be provided with motivation and incentive to carry on their hard work. This, ultimately, can only do a company good in terms of the bottom line. Payroll management is an essential ingredient in catapulting a company’s top employees to the highest positions in the company which, further still, provides long lasting benefits for the organization.

Reducing expenditures and freeing up resources

When companies upgrade their payroll management, they immediately benefit from saving time and thus reducing expenditures and freeing up valuable resources. This can be done by outsourcing payroll or even using payroll management software; both take a huge burden off a company who had previously considered payroll a manual task. Manual processes clutter business operations and cost the business money. By making sure there is an accurate and speedy payroll procedure in hand, be it in house or outsourced, businesses are able to reduce expenditures across the board.

Ensure lower tax bills

Whereas companies may believe that they are creating more money for their business by not investing in the monthly cost out sourcing would incur or by purchasing payroll software, they may indeed end up paying a lot more in the future. This is largely due to higher tax bills which can be accumulated through a number of different ways. It is remarkable that nearly half of all companies in the USA are fined, every year, for incorrect or late tax returns. Stoic refusal to accept the payments required for out sourcing or small business software purchases are usually the cause of this. Companies who deal with payroll in house often are unaware of the complicated web of codes, laws and regulations that tax returns require; something specialist services know as matter of course as per their job. To reduce their tax expenditures it is of optimum importance to companies to invest in upgrading their payroll.

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