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  4. Payroll Administrator Apprenticeship

Payroll Administrator Apprenticeship

Payroll Administrator Apprenticeship

Apprentice payroll administrators are in charge of distributing paychecks. They will create, maintain, and manage employee payroll records containing information such as attendance or timesheets, hours worked and pay grade.

Mainly working on a computer, they keep records up to date to ensure that all employees are paid on time.

Because they work to strict deadlines, it is vital to be highly thorough, well-organised, and timely. Strong numeracy and information technology skills are also required.


Throughout your apprenticeship, you may help:

  • check how many hours employees have worked
  • calculate and issue pay by cash, cheque or electronic transfer
  • deduct tax and national insurance payments
  • process holiday, sick and maternity pay, and expenses
  • calculate overtime, shift payments and pay increases
  • answer staff queries about timesheets or pay slips
  • issue P45s and other tax forms.


As a payroll administrator apprentice your starting salary would be £15,000 a year rising to £28,000 a year with experience.

Working hours

Working hours can vary, but usually full-time hours will be Monday to Friday and around 37-40 hours per week. This might change depending on where you work or who you work for, or during busier periods.


Qualifications you can achieve as an apprentice payroll administrator include:

Level 3 Payroll AdministratorEntry requirements for this level include 5 GCSEs at grades 9 to 4 (A* to C), or equivalent, including English and maths, for an advanced apprenticeship.


On a payroll administrator apprenticeship, you’ll learn:

  • to be thorough and pay attention to detail
  • administration skills
  • the ability to work well with others
  • sensitivity and understanding
  • the ability to work on your own
  • maths knowledge
  • patience and the ability to remain calm in stressful situations
  • knowledge of English language
  • to be able to use a computer and the main software packages competently.


You’ll usually be office based and the size of the team you’re part of will depend on the size of the business you work for.

You could be working alongside human resource professionals in various business sectors, including IT, retail, sales and marketing or construction.

Career prospects

You might further your payroll administration career by becoming a payroll supervisor or manager.

You might work for a wide variety of companies and organisations, both private (commercial employers) and public (government) (e.g. local authorities or the NHS).

Updated on November 13, 2022

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