Ryanair opts for bird’s eye view of payroll and HR

18 Jul 2006

Ryanair has awarded a contract for handling payroll and human resources (HR) services to Northgate HR in a deal valued at more than €350,000.

The contract initially provides for the airline’s 2,500 staff in Ireland and the UK but this figure is expected to more than double over the next two to three years as the airline is currently expanding. The system will also be extended to Ryanair’s other European bases over the coming years.

The system to be used by Ryanair is called ResourceLink and will incorporate a series of modules including personnel, payroll, recruitment, training and expenses, in addition to health and safety elements. The payroll module will be multi-jurisdictional, initially encompassing Irish and UK legislation and later expanding to comply with rules in other European countries. It will provide an integrated HR and payroll service which, it is claimed, will streamline existing processes at the airline and will be operated as an in-house system by Ryanair staff.

Ryanair employees have been fully trained on the new system and are currently helping in the implementation process. The UK element of the contract went live in April and the Irish operation is scheduled to go live later this month.

According to Howard Millar, Ryanair’s chief financial officer and deputy chief executive, the low-cost airline chose ResourceLink after an extensive review of the systems available in the market. “The combination of leading-edge technology and its scalability to cope with Ryanair’s plans to double the size of the business over the next five years made it an attractive solution,” he added.

Ironically, the Cara Payroll Group — since rebranded as Northgate HR — owes its origins to an IT services group which was spun off in the late Sixties from Aer Lingus, Ryanair’s bitter rival.

By Gordon Smith