Incorporating Kenya housing levy into your payroll

Incorporating Kenya housing levy into your payroll

We all know that taxation is an essential component of every business. Nonetheless, regardless of the size of your organisation and or investment in computing, managing taxes can be a daunting task. This is especially true when it comes to payroll taxes, which are intricate and carry serious legal implications.


Beginning 1st July 2023, the government of Kenya is mandated to collect Housing Levy, which must be remitted by the employer not later than nine working days after the end of each month. The housing levy is payable by the employee and employer at a rate of 1.5% of the employee’s gross monthly salary by the employee, and 1.5% of the employee’s monthly gross salary by the employer, as outlined in the Finance Act 2023.


Being a newly introduced tax with strict guidelines, there is the immediate need to align existing payroll systems with this new reality. Thanks to advancement in technology and the built-in foresight of Baraza Payroll System powered by DewCIS Solutions Ltd which has evolved to automate and streamline the process of incorporating newly introduced taxes including the Housing Levy deduction, remittance and reporting to ensure compliance with various tax regulations.


Considering that organisations have hundreds and thousands of records, an introduction of a new tax into the ecosystem would cause serious disruption, a riddle the solution to which would take several sleepless nights to solve. With Baraza Payroll, by simply defining a new Tax Category for Housing Levy and assigning the Rates for both employee and the employer contributions, the system will automatically calculate the correct tax amounts to be deducted from the payslip in addition to the other already existing tax obligations ensuring accuracy and compliance.


Needless to say that Baraza Payroll architecture was built with the reality that tax laws and rates are subject to change. Keeping track of these changes manually can be time-consuming and error-prone. Baraza Payroll system allows for updates to tax tables as an in-built service, ensuring businesses always use the latest rates for their calculations and a time-stamp of the previous tax regimes for reporting purposes.


We all know that year-end tax reporting can be stressful for both the employees and the employers alike. What with the strict timeframe requirements for statutory Forms including P9 and P10, and now faced with newly introduced Housing Levy. Baraza Payroll simplifies this process by automatically generating these requisite Forms, which can then be printed or electronically filed with the Kenya Revenue Authority (KRA).


Proper record keeping is vital not only for auditing purposes but most important, for potential reviews by KRA and in litigation where needed. Baraza Payroll assists organisations maintain detailed records of all transactions, ensuring easy retrieval and verification of any tax-related information.


Baraza Payroll system comes with built-in integration points to allow for seamless integration with accounting systems. This feature enables payroll tax-related transactions to be automatically reflected in your core accounting system, ensuring consistency and reducing the chances of errors due to manual data entry.


Another key feature of Baraza Payroll system is compliance alerts. These critical scheduled notifications are very handy because they warn of impending tax-related deadlines such as the nine-working days for remitting the Housing Levy deductions by the employer so as to remain compliant with the law.


Navigating the intricacies of taxation is a challenging aspect of running an organisation. Baraza Payroll software acts as a trusted ally; assisting organisations automate, simplify, and ensure accuracy in all tax-related obligations. Investing in Baraza Payroll system not only eases the taxation process but also secures compliance, giving both staff and employers a peace of mind and freeing up their time to focus on growth and other critical aspects of their operations.

Revolutionizing Performance Management with Baraza HCM

Revolutionizing Performance Management with Baraza HCM

We all know how it goes.. its the end of the year and the company needs to evaluate staff for possible salary increase or reviews for performance improvement plans. Even though, seasoned human resource experts opine that, to achieve effective performance appraisal, organisational goals ought to be clearly defined and understood by the entire workforce. Staff members can then define personal goals that align to the organisation’s end result. This creates a sense of involvement in the workplace, where expectations from staff are clear and there is enough room for personal development.

To build a cohesive workplace where the team members understand the strengths and weaknesses of each member and work towards a common organisation-wide goal, the stream of feedback needs to be uninterrupted. During this time, reporting managers are stressed trying to walk the tight rope, and not to upset the applecart. At the same time, they must differentiate rewards based on individual performance and risk dissatisfying some members of their team, while faced with a limited budget within which everyone’s expectations are to be accommodated.

Given this backdrop, is this a desirable exercise, if at all? Nonetheless, we need to acknowledge meritocracy, promote competition and reward excellence. There must be a better way of reviewing performance and rewarding merit based on accountability. For all its worth, performance appraisal ought not be a one-time annual season of intensive exercise wrongly conceived for ‘assessment interview’ where staff work endlessly trying to dress up the bride while operations almost grind to a halt.

Thankfully, Baraza HCM, Performance Management is one such tool that can facilitate personalisation and flow of activities right from defining key performance indicators (KPIs), competencies, and setting targets against the KPIs for the assessment of performance. In addition, it is very easy to report performance on an ongoing basis based on the frequency defined for individual staff KPIs, such as weekly, monthly, quarterly, bi-annually or annually. The reporting manager can give feedback with the same frequency in a sequentially rolling basis for each individual staff.

Unlike the olden days of annual performance appraisal, the new agile method allows for personalised periodic sprints. Spot awards can be given to staff for outstanding performance at any periodicity. Baraza HCM, Performance Management can rank performances and send automated triggers to staff sharing scorecards periodically. With this agility, appraisals do not have to happen at the same time for the organisation as a whole, which often builds an environment of heightened toxicity, gossip, and speculations. Rather, appraisals can happen on an ongoing basis anchored on the periodicity of the KPIs. Besides, all staff must not be appraised at the same time and season across the organisation.

With this level of automation, Human Resources team members have more time to facilitate developmental conversations between the employees and the management on topical issues including career plans, potential and future growth opportunities, a critical investment for an organisation to strengthen its ability to face uncertainties and continually transform.

The key to the success of this agile appraisal tool lies in the ability to define periods, KPIs, set targets, review when needed and drive personalised staff appraisals regularly.”

Baraza HCM Features Highlight

Baraza HCM Features Highlight

Baraza HCM incorporates a suitable Recruitment Module, which allows the HR department to coordinate the entire recruitment process into a simplified and verifiable workflow. The recruitment workflow will undertake requisite procedures from gathering candidate information to candidate shortlisting, interview sessions, and finally, the candidate selection. To improve efficiency, the recruitment management module offers an applicant tracking system that can receive or reject applicants automatically based on some predefined criteria. This feature is critical when dealing with vast volumes of applicants which should be processed within a limited timeframe from which to select the most suitable talent.

Baraza HCM has an effective Employee Management Module which supports organisations and HR professionals to control and supervise the employee profiles and their personal information including employee background information, contact details, previous experience details, qualification details, skills and job-related information such as salary details, tax, and banking information, employee position, performance evaluation, disciplinary details, insurance, and loan plans and much more. Furthermore, the Baraza HCM readily provides an employee self-service portal to strengthen the accountability of employees. The employee self-service portal is beneficial to staff who can receive messages and updates through simple and timely notifications. The employee self-service portal offers a window for staff to initiate certain processes including Leave application, Advance requests and generation and printing of personal reports including P9 forms.

Baraza HCM Payroll Module runs a crucial yet repetitive monthly process that would otherwise be a headache to the HR department. Save for efficiently processing pay, compute and retain relevant taxes and deductions, the Payroll Module is an engine for managing compensations and benefits including salary allowances and overtime work rates. Fully integrated within Baraza HCM, the Payroll Module minimises manual data entry and reduces human error because the information is all collected from a single source.

Baraza HCM Attendance Management Module supports HR in managing the daily attendance monitoring activities of its entire staff. The platform supports various modes of attendance including manual identification, barcode scanner, Kiosk mode, and GPS presence. Critical for on-sight jobs and support for shift management, the attendance module allows managers to regularly generate and examine attendance reports through attendance logs.

Baraza HCM Leave Management module is important for both colleagues and the HR department to have an insight into who is present and who is absent and the reason behind the absenteeism. All types of time off, such as vacations, sick off, maternity, casual, and other types of paid and unpaid time off, are tracked by the module. Furthermore, the Baraza HCM Leave Management Module supports various leave types, policies and holidays. Both staff and management can view the leave balances and can plan their time off accordingly. The module allows employees to apply for leave from anywhere using a dedicated mobile app or desktop web app. Likewise, relevant immediate and responsible personnel are able to approve or reject leave applications from anywhere and at any time. The complete leave analysis of the organisation is available from a single dashboard including tracking of individual leave history and publishing of organisation-wide leave schedules.

Baraza HCM Performance Management Module allows HR to objectively analyse employees and by extension the organisational performance. This unbiased analysis of employee performance supported by actual data empowers the HR to take suitable decisions for promotions, training or other actions relevant to the advancement of the organisation. The appraisal and assessment process is standard and transparent for both the staff and management which allows for fair scores across the entire organisation. The various reports generated support HR to understand the overall productivity ratio of individual employees.

Baraza HCM Dashboard & Reporting Module displays a deep insight into the most critical HR parameters of the organisation at a glance. The Dashboard publishes the most relevant and informative data aspects of HR for the convenience of users, employees and management. Services including notices, reminders and announcements are effectively communicated to all staff via the Dashboard. The Reporting Module includes the generation of any sort of information data from the system concerning the HR aspects of the organisation including statutory, regulatory, contractual and training reports required not only for compliance purposes but more important for decision-making and growth.

Baraza HCM Leave Management Feature

Baraza HCM Leave Management Feature

Almost everyone can relate to the challenge of going to work when someone is not willing, acting indifferent and showing an inattentive disposition to their colleagues and the tasks at hand. Working five and in some cases six days a week, eight hours a day, can have a serious toll on your body and at worse lead to burnout. Out of frustrations from the reality of work, the fear of being subjected to work all the days of his life without rest drove Pinocchio to strike dead, his mentor “The Talking Cricket” with a hammer.

Knowing the importance of rest and the social nature of human beings, work culture has been designed to allow employees to take leave from work in order to productively continue giving their best at work. By law, workers are entitled to various forms of leave. In Kenya for instance, the labour laws allow employees at least 21 paid Annual leave days. We are all susceptible to fatigue from many days of exhausting work, and it’s only befitting that we occasionally take a few days off to rest and rejuvenate.

We all know that time never waits for anyone. It is therefore up to us to manage our social life intertwined with our work lives. It is not unique to be with colleagues who keep fidgeting and twisting, lacking concentration due to continuous days of work. Taking time off from work to attend to private or recreational pastimes has shown that affected staff comes back from leave re-energized and inspired to continue delivering positively at work.

Another type of leave that is more of a necessity is sick leave. There are times when the body gets sick and staff would need to visit the hospital for treatment. Parents and caregivers appreciate sick leave very much, particularly for the young ones who are often susceptible to common cold and other diseases. In Kenya, we also enjoy maternity leave. New mothers are entitled to 3 months paid leave following birth, so as to give undivided attention to the newborn. Interestingly, male colleagues are also entitled to 2-weeks of paternity leave to enjoy the gift of being a dad!

Research has shown that having compassion as a value makes a large difference in establishing a healthy organisational culture. Compassionate Leave is given to staff who have gone through trauma such as the loss of a loved one and goes a long way to reassure colleagues of a workplace full of support and human care. Of course, we love our privacy and at certain times, we are not able to communicate our reasons to request leave. In their wisdom, psychologists entrenched leave of absence in our workplaces for our benefit. Imagine having to explain to your boss that you need to attend to your personal side hustle, a reality of our times, which though not recognised in our normal workplaces requires your direct involvement!

Our last leave to consider is compulsory leave, which is an administrative time-off given to staff to allow room for objective investigations into one’s professional conduct.

Appreciating the benefit of leave and offs, whether paid or unpaid, is very important to both staff and employers so as to account for time in employment. The Baraza Leave Management System is a comprehensive Human Capital tool, accessible online and mobile, designed for organisations to oversee Leaves and Time-offs in a structured form to support organizational work time

Part 2 : Tech Trends Upending Traditional Industries

Part 2 : Tech Trends Upending Traditional Industries

As discussed in part 1 the pace of technological change in the previous decades has been unprecedented and the wheels of the machine that is scientific discovery and invention still continue to turn. In part one we saw that all elements of daily life, intellectual pursuits, or economic activities are affected.

The way we make, ship, market, and utilize items is always changing—a chain of procedures that covers a wide range of sectors including;

1. Artificial Intelligence (AI)

Artificial intelligence is a technology where interconnected devices learn, predict, adapt and become intelligent systems that can do tasks that human beings can perform and even become more complex. and that can learn and adapt will become more complex. Artificial intelligence systems are rapidly becoming popular and will soon be everywhere, including homes, offices, factories, and medical facilities.

Some include Amazon Alexa, Apple Siri, Google’s Now. This technology through these companies is becoming the foundation of consumer operations at work and home while robotics and smart automation are replacing basic skills, including autonomous cars, around the world.

2. Business Application Ecosystem

In the past, many IT departments tried to simplify their environment by choosing a single vendor i.e. implementing Oracle for most of their application portfolio. As niche solutions explode across the company, this environment becomes increasingly difficult to pursue. IT needs to cooperate with multiple vendors and various technologies, and everything is more interconnected and interoperable than in the past.IT departments must mix and match software and hardware solutions, and master ecosystem integration and data management as their key IT responsibilities.

API‘s (application programming interfaces) are robust architectures that are essential to providing modular, flexible dynamic solutions. The power of disruption lies in the general technical support capabilities that a company can provide. For example, Airbnb and Uber have disrupted traditional industries in the hotel booking and taxi industry yet they do not own taxis or own property.

3. Cloud-Based & Scalable Applications with Infinite Infrastructure

IT assets were mostly on-premise in the past. Today, a business must manage a hybrid environment that includes on-premise and cloud-based assets that are managed by numerous vendors. As more firms actively move functions to the cloud, cloud computing is becoming more important. In the next two years, it is expected that a third of all ERP systems in the world will migrate to the cloud.

While some businesses use cloud platforms to save money or ensure continuity, the majority of the advantages are agility and the flexibility to scale an environment on demand.

Part 1 :  Tech Trends Upending Traditional Industries

Part 1 : Tech Trends Upending Traditional Industries

The pace of technological change in the previous several decades has been unprecedented, from the birth of the Internet to the arrival of big data and quantum computing. The wheels of the machine that is scientific discovery and invention continue to turn. Furthermore, the planet is undergoing some of the most significant transformations in its history. Moreover, no element of daily life, intellectual pursuits, or economic activities is unaffected.

The way we make, ship, market, and utilize items is always changing—a chain of procedures that covers a wide range of sectors including;

1. Digital Banking

With the rise of digital evolution, every industry has been impacted and thus redefined customer expectations. The digital disruption has seen businesses being transformed and making use of digital technologies. Rather than just putting up a mere website, leading companies use digitization from start to finish by doing product design, service, customer care, marketing, customer lifecycle, sales and online engagement.

Industry leaders not only use technology and processes to increase productivity and reduce costs, but they also use digital technology to develop new services, improve customer service, increase revenue, improve business models and products. Successful industries now have a comprehensive digital strategy to determine how to use digital technologies in all business aspects.

2. Internet of Things (IoT) Connecting Everything

According to the Harvard Business Review, IoT is a major transformative wave of innovation. The previous wave of change was mainframes and minicomputers, as well as the rise of the Internet. Internet-connected devices with embedded sensors that can provide actionable information will continue to grow at an exponential rate. These platforms will connect smart machines and smart everything in a collaborative ecosystem.

The Gartner Group refers to it as the “digital grid.” With the rapid growth of the installed base of IoT terminals, information technology (IT) must integrate IoT terminals, mobile devices, wearable devices, consumer equipment, transmission equipment, environmental equipment, etc. Information Technology integrated with IoT into business applications and analytics will provide meaningful insights into business processes and operations.

3. Mobile

Mobile devices remain a strong trend in the future and they are continually integrated into our daily work and personal life. Consumers want to be able to communicate and conduct business with companies through their smartphones, laptops and tablets and they’re wearable devices. The number of mobile devices so far exceeds the number of laptops and desktops that are currently used, and customers are more likely to access applications through smartphones or mobile devices than through PCs.

As mobile device sales increase, so has the variety and number of downloaded mobile applications. Businesses in all industries are using mobile devices to increase customer engagement, boost sales and build customer loyalty. This is done by the use of technology that supports a rapidly changing mobile workforce and customers. It is expected to see the mix of mobile devices, smart devices, and the Internet of Things across all industries and functions.