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Questions, Questions, Questions!

Updated: Jul 28, 2021

Have you ever heard a fellow colleague make complaints that sound like these?

- or perhaps THIS IS YOU! –

As Payroll & HR Professionals, we have all lived through times of frustration with certain processes that impact our day-to-day operations. Inefficiencies certainly do exist, and we are riddled with constraints. As hard as it is to admit however, sometimes we are probably our own worst enemies, and our stock response often becomes something like this...

Instead of making excuses, we need to take time to save time!

And how can we do THAT, you may be wondering...

Why not start by asking the 5 w’s?


.. is affected because of this problem? (Staff, employees, management, etc.)

.. uses the process? (Is this a training issue or does the process need to be overhauled?)


.. processes are inefficient?

.. are the pain points in completing these processes?

.. specifically, is causing the bottleneck?


.. can we access assistance or support? (Within the department? outside the dept. but within the organization? third party specialist? etc.)


.. did we start running this specific process?

.. did we notice inefficiencies since “Day 1” or just recently?

.. will we address the problem? (Start the Plan).


.. are we running this process?

.. is it taking more time than expected to run the process or finish the process?

.. are other organizations running a similar process more efficiently than we are?

In the Wizard of Oz, when Dorothy asked the Good Witch Glinda “But, how do I start for the Emerald City?”, Glenda said,

It’s always best to start at the beginning …”

Of course, it is more complex than just asking the “5-Ws”, but they are the best starting point.

In my next blog, I will take you through the more in-depth questions I learned to ask and the strategies I employed that helped me through these challenges in my role as Manager of Payroll Services.

Claude Clement, Subject Matter Expert - HRPLink …

(Thanks to Silvie Belanger for her wonderful editing skills) – HRPLink …

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