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In Nigeria, the payroll frequency is usually monthly, bi-weekly or weekly. The payment for salaries is to be made at least once a month. There are no statutory requirements for 13th-month salary payments but bonuses are common and are based on the discretion of the employer.

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For small business owners or managers, finances are among the most important considerations for the success of the business. While the majority of financial considerations are strictly internal, payroll is one vital activity that cannot be neglected or taken unseriously. Payroll is also the biggest single expense for most businesses, so it is important to process it accurately and efficiently. As the business grows and the number of employees increases, it is wise to seek a better way to manage the payroll and ensure everyone gets paid when they need to.

There are several payroll/HR management systems such as talent base, Primeroll, Tams, Sage one, etc but the focus of this article is Bento Africa, a leading payroll software solution in Nigeria.

Bento Africa was founded by Ebun Okubanjo and Chidozie Okonkwo in 2016 as a payroll and human resources platform to help companies in Nigeria manage their employees’ salaries. It was Formerly known as VerifiNG but In 2019, after observing that employees earnings were a multi-faceted point of convergence where a lot of things happen, the name was then changed to Bento. This was because the founders wanted their services to expand beyond just pension, healthcare, and taxes.

Bento Africa uses cloud-based technology to power salaries, benefits, and human resources. Its flagship product, Pay by Bento, is a cloud-based salaries and benefits solution that helps businesses do more with less time while its second product, People by Bento reconsiders human resource management thoroughly. The company’s products and services are for employers who understand that a well-cared labour force is a competitive advantage for employers who want to save time and cost.

Also, Bento believes that highly motivated employees will lead to organizational excellence which then increases productivity. Bento through its payroll technology is helping African businesses transition from the tedious and manual payroll human resource management process to easier, faster, and more efficient digital and cloud-based solutions.

Most African businesses process payments of salaries, taxes, health insurance, pensions for their employees manually using excel sheets, a process that is prone to errors. Bento helps employers to abandon this redundant time-consuming process through its payroll technology which allows making these payments with just a single click.

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The company has processed over $40 million in payroll for over 700 active Nigerian businesses since launching in 2019. In Nigeria, Bento currently serves more than 900 businesses, including healthcare and financial service companies such as Hygeia and Tangerine Africa, and Y Combinator-backed startups Paystack, Kobo360, Branch, and LORI Systems. It has also expanded to Ghana, Rwanda, and Kenya. its payroll process has been positioned strategically to be plugged into all banks, pension funds, and tax systems, giving it access to data on thousands of employees which helps to solve the problem of credit access.

Through its credit services, people who need funds can access them through the platform and pay them back monthly with interest. To facilitate credit access, Bento partners with Schoolable, a Nigerian tech start-up. Schoolable provides stakeholders of K-12 schools access to credit. In essence, they help parents pay the bulk tuition of their children while they pay back every month with interest.  They also partner with Kwaba, a rental property platform that gives instant loans for customers to pay for a home in convenient instalments. This is beneficial, especially with millions of Nigerians living in rented apartments and spending almost half of their income on rent payments.

Having successfully established product-market fit in Nigeria, one of the most difficult markets to penetrate in Africa, it is expected to roll out Africa and solve the real problems millions of employers and employees face daily. The company plans to expand its operations to other regions across the continent. In its next phase of expansion in 2022, Bento is eyeing Egypt, South Africa, Uganda, Tanzania, Angola, and Ethiopia. With the platform’s belief that African businesses deserve better, it is expected that the startup will pay attention to the unique business setting in Africa and develop solutions that can adapt to Africa to solve the real problems these businesses face daily.

Since its inception, Bento Africa has performed impressively and so one can believe that they will expand to the six countries they have an interest in. With the lucrative nature of remittances and payment services, they might, with time, add these to their services just like Paga did.

Featured Image Source: Businessday NG
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This article was first published on 2nd March 2022


I am an accomplished content creator and recently delved into technical writing. I enjoy using my skills to contribute to the exciting technological advances and create awareness of evolving technological trends in Nigeria.

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