Xero - the world's easiest accounting system

Xero Communities

Join the discussion

Community > Accounting >

AU Payroll: Payroll Summary Report not totalling

Started by Stuart McLeod (Xero Staff) -   in Accounting

Today we released completely rebuilt reporting functionality to payroll in Xero for Australian users. Everything went really smoothly except the totalling function of the Payroll Summary Report; the report that many customers are using to produce the totals for their March BAS. While we're working on a fix for this report right now, I thought I'd share a reasonably straight forward work around which is;

Run a Transaction Listing Summary report and group by Pay Item Type. That will give you the totals that you need for the BAS. In the mean time, we'll update the existing report ASAP. There's some more information in our help section

Apologies for any inconvenience.
Unfortunately this workaround does not work as needed. The report separates the different type of wages paid so you have to manually add them up to get the actual gross.
Also while I am here I'd like to bitterly complain about the layout. Previously the Payroll Summary report was simple and easy to read. The totals; Gross, tax, super etc (both individually per employee and the total of all employees) were displayed clearly across the page. Now they are displayed down the page line by line, category and with sub-totals so you can't see 'at a glance' what you want. I really hate the new layout, it might be trying to give extra information but the form it's taking is very unclear and non-intuitive.
The super reports are also a pain as you can't get a simple per employee total, you get pages and pages of detail for employees per pay run!
Sorry to keep complaining but these improvements are a nightmare.

Kim Maine  

Same here! Been trying to figure out what is the easy way to get hold of actual gross on the Payroll Activity Report Summary, Have spent half an hour going through the report to get the information, Got so frustrated and finally ask for help in Xero! . Imagine the time that I would have to waste to add the pay category to get the gross wages for 12 monthly BAS each month. Glad that they are doing something about it.

Nita Ling  

Thanks for your feedback Kim & Nita, we'll take that in to consideration as we continue to improve our reports.

Stuart McLeod (Xero Staff)  

Another vote to please put the Payroll Summary Report back to its old format. The new layout is of no use at all for BAS preparation. The new Transaction Listing Summary does not help either. As stated by the previous posters, we need to manually add the earnings and deduct the deductions to get a W1 figure. And now we need to add different tax items for get the W2 figure as well.

BAS wages reporting is so fundamental in Australia I can't believe this has not been a top priority.

Not all negative though. I have to say a big thank you for the Leave and Employee Remunerations reports. A big step in the right direction.

Claire Parker  

Have to say I agree - the prior report was easy to easy to figure out the gross and super etc for different types of employees, eg apprentices and qualified's who are also tracked by cost centre for allocation of direct and indirect wages expenses. Prefered the other layout.

Joanna Schon  

Just for the sake of clarity, there's 2 issues here. The first is that the Payroll Activity Summary report is not behaving as intended, so that's causing the frustrations you mention. We're working on a fix, but it's likely it will take us a few days, not hours, to get that resolved. If that's not sufficient, we're happy to look at a BAS report or similar, but we'll get the first report fixed first. We do listen!

Stuart McLeod (Xero Staff)  

Clients are hating the new format of the Payroll summary report, aside from the fact it doesn't total.

Will the fix for the totals also bring back the original format? If it doesn't, really would like it as a choice!!

Aurelio Catalano  

I also agree with the others that this new layout is not helpful at all.

It would be fantastic if you could include the old Payroll Summary somewhere instead of completely eliminating it as many of us use this as part of our procedures. Now I will have to export each of the 6 categories in the Transaction Listing Summary to create the spreadsheet I used to be able to export directly from Xero.

Please bring this back! But I'd also just like to point out that other than this I'm very happy with Xero and especially their customer service. Please continue to be great and fix this problem for us.

Samantha Lenc  

Also agree the fix would be great. Also on the lay out of the Payroll Activity Summary, it isn't easy to determine where one employee starts and the other finishes - it has the same font for every heading.

David Gardner  

please leave the payroll summary report as it is. why change one of the most critical payroll reports used accountants and bookkeepers!

Thomas Bombotas  

Totally Agree with all of the above comments. The old report was extremely useful - the new one is hopeless.

Luke Bull  

Agree with all the above comments. Will hold back judgement until the Payroll Activity Summary is working as intended

Jon Traynor  

Just to pick up on a few comments that the Transaction Listing Summary Report isn't giving totals and you have to export it. There is a Grouping option on the report that will provide totals.

When running the Transaction Listing Summary Report be sure to update the Grouping option from Standard View to Group By Pay Item Type. This will give you the totals.
For more information check out the Help Centre article: http://help.xero.com/#PayrollReportOptions

Rest assured, we're hearing your feedback and working on it, just to let you know that you can get the totals you need now easily.


Tim Wright  

I have to agree with everyone else. Obviously totals are not working as was intended and is in the process of being fixed. But aside from that, the new layout is not clear and takes up much more space. The old payroll summary was much easier and clearer to understand. Please bring that one back.

Agree with Sami though, Xero customer service is generally excellent and they respond to any queries promptly. Hopefully they'll take the suggestions on board and bring back the old version of the report for us.


Kelly Blackmore  

Sorry Stuart, I've got to agree here too. We've been using Paycycle since the early days, and in the past everything has been excellent, but mate, after 10 months of report developing since integrating into Xero, and it comes to this? I'm surprised this wasn't picked up in Beta testing??

Charles Klvana  

Loved the old Payroll Summary Report, love Xero great software, great people but HATE the new Payroll Summary report. Bring back the old report at least as an option. Why make the change to such a great report and why in the middle of quarterly BAS preparation?

David Gray  

I think that the old report should at least be available at the moment as everyone is trying to get their BAS done and what is available at the moment did not help at all and I only had 3 employees.

Grip Leadership Accounts  

Fortunately the Payroll Summary Report run from the payroll process hasn't changed so clients are not so confused as i have shown my clients to use this report to pay their employees.
Unfortunately I didn't receive the release email till this afternoon, in the meantime I was on site at a client this morning and initially praised Xero to the client for the new reports, however I was soon brought back down to earth when I fumbled my way through the reports and couldn't easily get the information readily for the BAS. and Suer liability i certainly looked like a goose...
Xero support did respond very quickly and I was able to redeem the product.

It is good to see Xero responding to this but raises a few questions:
. Can partners be advised of the pending release changes a day before the release so that we can determine which clients may be affected. I checked emails before going to my client and as there was none assumed the outage was infrastructure related
. why aren't the re-designed reports taking on the Xero look and feel for display, date selections and filtering, it (payroll) still looks like an add-on rather than part of the Xero suite
. When are we going to be able to favourite and publish payroll documents.

Unrelated to this but I'd be interested in the releases before EOFY, desperately hope payment summaries can be emailed direct from the app to individual employees.

Keep up the good work guys, know yountakenon board all our comments to produce a great product.


Serge Crismale  

Totally agree that the old summary report should not have been changed. We extracted that report to Excel and relied on it for other calculations. If Xero wanted to create a new layout they should have created a new report. The assumption that customers did not use that report, and the complete lack of communication and change management is worrying. I continue to wonder at Xero's experience in designing and managing software. It is the new wunderkind of the cloud software movement but it has some fundamental design issues and now it appears, some change management issues.

Paul Smith  

Very surprised (and rather concerned) that this hasn't being emailed to all payroll users yet.

I stumbled across this thread by pure coincidence and luck.

Jeremy Wotton  

Hi Stuart - the old Payroll Summary Report was also perfect for calculating Payroll Tax liability, and the new one just doesn't cut it nor does the workaround produce the information needed. The best solution would be to reinstate the old report as another option, as it was perfect just as it was. Thanks, Mike.

Mike Smith  

Hi Team,
i must add my concerns to those listed above - what happened to the old dictum "if it ain't broke why fix it" one of the key features of the Xero system that attracts most users is its simpilicity and ease of use and the old payroll Summary report was so easy to produce and provided the figures required for the BAS/IAS - Keep it Simple!!!!!!!

Mike Hines  

Mike & Mike, thanks for your feedback. We're actively working on resolving the new report at the moment, and will look to roll a new report - like the old - when we're over the first hurdle.

As to the "if it ain't broke, etc"... the thing about Xero is we're always trying to make improvements with the long term in mind. Without going in to boring detail, the technology (SSRS for the buffs) that the old payroll reports were built on was just not going to cut it. Apart from being really ugly, the goal is to have all reports in Xero on the same platform so we can move towards being able to publish all reports, including payroll.

There's always lots going on behind the scenes with the end game in mind; sometimes it doesn't always seem that way.

Stuart McLeod (Xero Staff)  

Help - my clients export the Payroll Summary Report and use this report - I am getting yelled at and it is going to take me 3 hours to do this manually.
Why weren't we Advisers warned. Really Really disappointed.

Sandy Williams  

Hi stuart,
Thank you for your comments - looking at long term improvements do you have on your list a way of populating the figures at W1 & W2 on BAS/IAS form automatically instead of users calculating and entering the figures manually. When its all boiled down that's what is behind the frustration being expressed by the by the people that have commented so far

Mike Hines  

I went to the payruns and looked at each weeks pay summary report - it is still in the old format. You can get each weeks totals from this report and put it in a spreadsheet to get a final tally while the xero team are working on a fix.

Debbie Bonnell  

This morning, as promised, we've released an update to the Payroll Summary Report so that it is summarising correctly. The BAS information required for W1 and W2 is easily found in a report that will generally fit on 1 page. We hear that you like the old style of report as well, and we'll look at providing this in the next release or as soon as possible thereafter.

Stuart McLeod (Xero Staff)  

The closest alternative we have found (as a workaround until/if the original format is reinstated) is by using the "Transaction Listing Detail Report". If you choose the 'Group by Employee' function it SHOULD give a report with essentially the same information as the old report, but unfortunately still in a different format. HOWEVER, the 'Group by Employee' function doesn't appear to work. It groups by Employee AND Date - not just by Employee. We have now dumped this report into Excel and used a pivot table to get it into the right level of summary and back into the original format. I hope Xero has learned a valuable lesson in change control and change management from this little exercise!

Paul Smith  

After reviewing the new "Update" it is still much harder to read that the old report - and it doesn't list the employees as per the old report. I can imagine an influx of calls from clients regarding this report...

David Gardner  

Hi Stuart,
The only update the payroll summary you should have released today was to revert it to the old one.
Did you do any user testing before launching the update? It's really out of character for Xero to go against the grain of what their customers enjoy and use with an unhelpful update.
Can you please provide us all with a date when we will be able to access the old payroll summary in exactly the same format as it previously displayed?
P.s. - still a massive fan of Xero.

Ciaran Ryan  

What do we need to do to get the old report back. I cannot export to excel a report of one payroll listing the payments to the individual employees - therefore customise it to my clients needs. My clients hate it. I am having to manually key these details into excel.
Why didn't you check with your users before deleting this report. Please don't wait for another release - restore it please.

Sandy Williams  

I'm really disappointed too.
This is an uncharacteristic mess. Put it back the way it was until this is fixed please. I use the summary report to calculate the amount of super I need to pay, as well as for the IAS / BAS. The super reports are useless when paying super.

And while we are on improvements to the payroll reports, how about we be able to save favourite reports as we can for the main reports.

And the ONE thing that really annoys me about the payroll generally (other than this new reports fiasco) is that I can't enter leave when doing a pay run, I have to go to 'employee leave' and then back to the current 'pay run' to process leave.

Matt Gilchrist  

Hi Stuart and Xero team,

Also agree with the others that the change in report is a big regression - and really disappointing. We love new functionality but when a super useful report is replaced by a not so useful report it is a bad sign. (that said I'm not knocking the tech upgrade and look of the new reports, just the loss of the old one)

As accountants, the summary report (in MYOB, Xero or QB) is what we use 95% of the time.

The advice from support is to filter the report by individual employees if you want to see what they're paid, not really good enough. I's pretty standard functionality to have a single report that gives a list of employees and what they are paid.

Sure, leave the new one, but bring back the old report please and hopefully quicker than the new release.

James Carey  

I would like to add my disappointment to the payroll upgrades, it is definitely not intuitive nor helpful. If you are going to introduce new reports, why don't you run the concept passed some real users to gauge their reactions instead of just launching unwanted stuff upon us?

Jennifer Gray  

Very disappointed in Xero making such a rookie mistake when changing a system.. Reporting in Xero is limited in mos areas and we are totally reliant on Xero and had to manually add our figures to get the required totals for BAS and payroll tax reporting. It's now 4 days since you acknowledge the problem, when is the fix due???

Bruce Allen  

Thanks everyone for your comments and feedback in this thread.

A lot of feedback we received was that the Payroll Summary Report report was mainly used for BAS reporting purposes and the important information was the totals for each pay items so that they could be used on the relevant fields on the activity statements. We corrected this with the change to the Payment Activity Summary report last week with the totals now being displayed.

It seems, based on the comments, that this report was previously heavily used for a check/audit of employee pay, in a particular period, and so the important information would be the employee names and amounts.

If this is the case then the Payroll Activity Details report provides this information and can be filtered on specific employees or groups, or all employees, as needed for a particular period.

The layout of this report is designed to meet the needs of a range of customers and it is different to the previous Payroll Summary Report layout but provides the same, and more information, except for pay item types totals for all employees.

When making updates and changes we try and minimise the impact felt and with the new reports the information is presented in a different format which was necessary for us to move forward and offer more detailed reports for those that need it whilst still providing access to the same information.

Oliver Furniss (Xero Staff)  

Hi Oliver,

The Payroll Activity Details report is nowhere near as clear and concise as the old Payroll Summary Report, if this is an improvement then I hate to see what comes next. What happened to listening to your customers? We are all unhappy with this new layout!

I really don't see why Xero can't just appease us by including the old Payroll Summary Report somewhere instead of trying to sell us this new report which we have already found to be useless. Please, please just bring back the original report.

Personally I didn't just use the old Payroll Summary Report for BAS's I also used it as a checking procedure for working out the payrun's by exporting this to excel and this has just ruined this procedure completely. I now have to do this manually per employee. This is a huge disappointment.

Samantha Lenc  

Hi Oliver,
I just tried running the payroll activity detail report for a client (this financial year to date) - exported the results to excel and it ran to 6773 lines... So yes it provides more information than the old report, but it isn't very useful.

James Carey  

Hi Oliver,
I think that you're right, many of us do use it to verify payroll details. So, it should export and have each column (gross wages, deductions, super contributions etc) per employee. We can them manually total them (or maybe the old report did that for us). Could you please try to do this with the 'Payroll Activity Detail' as you've just suggested. It's a disaster. As a number of people have suggested, maybe you should just wait and contact us when the old system and layout has been reverted to, even if it's just a single line item on the reporting dashboard? Or, are you saying that Xero will not be giving us our old format?

Ciaran Ryan  

Hi everyone, thanks for your passionate feedback. We certainly never set out to disappoint our customer base, and we're always looking at ways to improve.

As you maybe aware, the old style payroll reports had been in use since the migration of Paycycle to Xero in May of last year. In order to provide consistency across all reports in Xero, allow for the first steps towards publishing and favouriting reports, we needed to rebuild all payroll reports using newer technology. The advanced grouping, easy selection of columns, changing of layout inside a report are all features of the new framework that you will see rolled out to Xero reports in the future. We expect to see some continual UI improvements over time as well.

In order to address the concerns outlined here and received by our support team, we will be releasing a Payroll Summary Report that is identical to the old report; employees on the left hand side, and Earnings, Deductions, Tax, Net Pay, Super & Reimbursements across the top.

While it was our intention that the Payroll Activity Summary report covered this data, we acknowledge that there's a better way. However, it's not just as easy as re-releasing the old report. The report must be produced using the new technology and follow all our normal testing and release processes, meaning we can't do this in a day or so, it'll be longer. I'll provide another update when we have some accurate timing for you. Rest assured, we're working on it though.

Stuart McLeod (Xero Staff)  

That's excellent news Stuart. We look forward to seeing it!!

Kelly Blackmore  

Great News. I have just gone to do my payroll tax where I use the Payroll Summary Report and without each of the employee details summarised I am going to have to go through quite a bit of manipulating to get the information I am after. The old report was simple and precise and captured information in an easy format for all sorts of payroll reconciliation's...

Prue Fellowes  

That's great Stuart, thanks for listening to us. I look forward to it's release, hopefully it's not too far off.

Samantha Lenc  

And now it's time to prepare super. Running the new super accruals report and .... Looks vaguely similar to the old one, but holy moly is it U G L Y!

The old report was landscape and didn't repeat the superfund name on every single line for a particular employee, but the new one does. And what's more, the column for the superfund name is really small, so it wraps to 3 lines. Holy crap. What super fund is only 13 characters long? That's how wide the column is?!?

So another example of how to absolutely stuff up a report format.

Stuart can you please "beautify" the super accruals report as well? Xero is "beautiful" accounting software after all....

Charles Klvana  

looks like the guys at Xero have taken a lot of convincing on this one (Payroll summary) - it seems so basic and beta testing with users should have picked it up - it was such a neat and concise report, so easy for employers to understand and report their liabilities. Not sure why it is so hard to put back - it is only a report after all - but will patiently await the arrival

Margaret Carey  

Thanks for your feedback Charles. One of the functions of the new reporting technology is that you can choose the columns you'd like to display. You can also naturally widen the view of any report. I suggest trying those.

I've tried to describe in my post of 22 April why we can't just put the old report back Margaret, I apologise if my explanation is insufficient.

Stuart McLeod (Xero Staff)  

Thanks Stuart, I may need to contact support though, because I must be doing something wrong. While I can see the diagonal arrow button, which expands the report across the screen, as well as the drop down box to select which columns appear, I can't figure out how to change the width of the columns. Also when sending to PDF, the "expand the report" across the page button does nothing.
So essentially back to square one, where the superfund name wraps to FOUR lines on the PDF. Eg: ANZ Smart Choice - Superannuation. That's 4 lines on the pdf report, whereas on the old report it was fine, because the layout was different. Even the member supernumber is wrapping to 2 lines!
Remember we can't publish the reports, so everyone's going to want to export to PDF so they can save for auditing purposes, and it's the PDF report that we can't tailor to fit nicely.

Charles Klvana  

Hi Charles. Perhaps send the PDF report through to support so we can take the example in to consideration as we make improvements.


Stuart McLeod (Xero Staff)  

I really can't believe Xero have done something as utterly daft as removing an existing report. I'm now looking at spending the rest of the day printing copious reports for 6 clients in order to get the super paid for their staff. The one-page Payroll Activity Summary that we used to print meant i used to be able to do all of this in around an hour!

Please get that report back as soon as possible. I've used the same report in MYOB for over 15 years without any issues. If Xero are going to start telling me can't produce it then it'll be back to MYOB on 1 July.

Yes you probably figured I am quite cranky about this.

Tim Allen  

Hi Tim, maybe the Superannuation Accrual report might be more appropriate for your current use? And might I suggest utilising our Automatic Superannuation functionality available in the large subscription? No reports, no BPAY, no EFTs, just really easy. Anyway, as I've said before, we're working on providing the old report for you.

Stuart McLeod (Xero Staff)  

Thanks Stuart have done. One last suggestion while you're watching this space. I love the new adjusted payroll activity report, HOWEVER there's no written date range on the report until you export to PDF.
Yes I know the drop down box says "Last Quarter" for example, but it's 100% more reassuring to actually have the report say "1st Jan to 31st March" like it does when you export the report.
You just never know if for some reason Xero thinks the last quarter is something different than what you think the last quarter is.
Actual dates on the report like when exported would be a nice tweak.

Charles Klvana  

I'm always watching Charles! But thank you. Appreciate your constructive feedback. Will pass on to the guys.

Stuart McLeod (Xero Staff)  

Stuart can you please advise when the original report will be restored? This is critical to our payroll function. I've only stumbled across this today. Fortunately (for me) I prepared our March reports before this recent roll out. It is critical we get this report back for 1 May.

Tim Jasper  

Wow Stuart, wouldn't like to be in your shoes right now but thanks for keeping us all updated.

I hope the product development and roll-out team learn the BIG lesson from all of this...make sure QC is on the ball and talking to users who know what is required before upgrades are released. I love Xero but these payroll reports are a joke, whoever was handling QC on this has a lot to answer for!

I agree with comments above, the new report layouts are not user friendly and not practical. People who actually use these reports on a daily basis should be consulted so the product development team can get it right first time. There are some things you shouldn't change as they just work and always will (like the original layout of the payroll summary report).

Apart from the Payroll Summary report issues I've also found the Super Accrual report to be most unhelpful. The old Super Accrual by fund report layout was sufficient (ie you could see the total amount owing to each super fund split up into the individual amounts attributable to each employee). Anyone using payroll regularly who pays super needs this information readily available in one easy-to-read report so I'm not sure how the Xero QC team overlooked this in the current release?

The second issue with the new Super reports is that the filter on the 'Superannuation Accruals' report doesn't seem to work when exporting the report to PDF/Excel.

For example, if you remove the 'Employee Group' column from the Super Accruals report using the filter it removes it from the on-screen view, but when you export the report to PDF/Excel the Employee Group column is still visible. Stuart, you mentioned above that one of the functions of the new reporting technology is that you can choose the columns you'd like to display, but it's not much good if the column's you choose to remove from the on-screen report are still visible in the PDF/Excel report.

Hoping Xero is paying some big overtime to the programmers to get these things fixed ASAP, as this payroll release was not very well thought out from an end users perspective.


Ryan Gollan  

I'm pleased you haven't changed the Pay Run Summary report that you can generate from each pay run. I suspect that's going to get a makeover soon, but please don't change the basic layout with employees down the side and earnings/tax etc along the top. One useful change you could make to that report is to include a "bank" column at the far right that would be net pay + reimbursements, and the total would tie to the bank summary report.

As far as the Payroll Activity Summary goes, it's fine (now it adds up), but I'd also like a summary by employee that totals all the pay run summary reports for the month.

The super reports are useless in "standard" view - it would make the transition to the new reports less confusing if it defaulted to by employee or by superfund. At first I didn't see those options and was frustrated that I'd have to add up or export into excel to manipulate it.

Leave reports are an improvement although it messed up my spreadsheet for calculating LSL accruals. Grouping by leave type AND employee would be useful, rather than one or the other.

Finally, does this mean you will soon implement the star thing and favourite payroll reports like you can other ones?

Thomas BODGER  

Hi Stuart, more feedback for you on the new reporting engine.

When I view a report, drill down into something, then press the back button, it doesn't take me back to the report, instead it takes me back to the report "customisation" screne where I select the criteria to run the report. This is different than all the other normal reports in Xero.

Also, I can't right click and open in new window to drill down in a report so I can avoid pressing the back button. again different than all the other reports in Xero (presumably due to the reporting engine).

Lastly, selecting employees in the employee box, I can't start typing the employee name for Xero to auto-filter, I'm forced to use the slower method of actually scrolling down the drop down box to hunt through 50 staff.

Please pass the above onto your team for possible revisions.


Charles Klvana  

So glad to see this discussion. I thought I was the only one who was unhappy with the new formats. I also prefer to be able to print a report directly from the screen when I need it. Its irritating to have to save it first and then print it off.

Kayt Primmer  

The new format Payroll Activity Summary is "ugly" and useless! Hurry up and bring back the old format which we all used and obviously were happy with. Why am I going to spend my time each month to manually transpose figures to an excel spreadsheet when the old summary worked perfectly fine?

Karen Hastings  

Hi its 30th April! We really need this report tomorrow. Can you please advise if this will be available!?

Tim Jasper  

Hi Stuart,
It's 10:12pm local time on the 30th of April, and when I run a payroll report and select "last month" it's now showing APRIL's data instead of March?!?!?!!! The timezone for the organisation is set correctly as well.

Luckily I double checked the figures because it looked wrong.

Can you please investigate why the payroll report is using april now when I select "last month" instead of March??

What makes it worse, is that the new payroll reports don't show the actual dates up the top when you select "last month" and it's not until you export to PDF that you see the actual dates that the report is using.

Charles Klvana  

For anyone interested in recreating the old payroll activity report in Excel, here are the instructions: There is a link to a sample excel spreadsheet at the bottom of the post.

1) Create Transaction Listing Detail Report for the period in question. eg employees: ALL, Date Range: This Month (or date range etc), Pay item type: ALL)
2) Change from standard view to ‘group by employee’

3) Export to excel spreadsheet. A sheet called ‘Transaction Listing Details’ is created.

4) Make a copy of the sheet. Rename it as you desire.

5) On the copy delete the title headers ie (report title, date, business name et)
6) Sort the spreadsheet by Column A. This gives you a list of all employees for the month
7) Delete all other data rows.
8) Insert column headers. eg Employee, Earnings, Deduction, Tax, Payment

Now reference the original sheet (ie Transaction Listing Details) with the following formula for each column

Earnings Column
=SUMIFS('Transaction Listing Details'!$F:$F,'Transaction Listing Details'!$B:$B,$A2,'Transaction Listing Details'!$D:$D,"Earnings")

Deductions Column
=SUMIFS('Transaction Listing Details'!$F:$F,'Transaction Listing Details'!$B:$B,$A2,'Transaction Listing Details'!$D:$D,"deduction")

Taxes Column
=SUMIFS('Transaction Listing Details'!$F:$F,'Transaction Listing Details'!$B:$B,$A2,'Transaction Listing Details'!$D:$D,"tax")

Net Pay Column
=SUMIFS('Transaction Listing Details'!$F:$F,'Transaction Listing Details'!$B:$B,$A2,'Transaction Listing Details'!$D:$D,"payment")

Super Column
=SUMIFS('Transaction Listing Details'!$F:$F,'Transaction Listing Details'!$B:$B,$A2,'Transaction Listing Details'!$D:$D,"super")

9) Drag down formula rows for each employee.

10) Voila! Payroll activity report.

Here is the link to the sample excel file
Feel free to download and modify to your needs

Tim Jasper  

Just an update, we're in development with the report, and it's likely that we'll see a release before the end of May. I assume I'll get comments to the effect of "it can't be that hard, just release it today." So I'll presume to try and answer that now. I know it seems like a simple thing to deliver, but there are a lot of moving parts in Xero these days, and the delivery of a report requires changes in a number of areas, which all require testing and slotting in to our normal release cycles. We're working hard at bringing this for you and I will update when I can firm some more dates.


Stuart McLeod (Xero Staff)  

@Tim. Thanks for posting that way to produce the old payroll summary report. It got me thinking and I think we can make the procedure easier and shorter using pivot tables:

1) Create Transaction Listing Detail Report for the period in question. eg employees: ALL, Date Range: This Month (or date range etc), Pay item type: ALL)

2) Export to excel spreadsheet. A sheet called ‘Transaction Listing Details’ is created.

3) Click on the cell with Date in it (A5). Scroll with the mouse and SHIFT CLICK the last number in the amount column. (This selects all heading and all the data lines).

4) Choose Data > PivotTable report / Insert PivotTable (depending on Excel version).

5) Follow the wizard. The range will automatically be those cells you selected. Put the PivotTable as a New Sheet. Click Layout.

6) Drag Employee into Row. Drag Pay Item Type to Column. Drag Amount to Data.

7) If the Data area does not show SUM of Amount, double click on it and change to Sum.

8) When you finish the Wizard you have a report similar to the old Payroll Summary Report.

9) The orders of the columns are a bit different. Payment is the Net Payment. Ignore the Grand Total Column.

10) If you want you can Copy and Paste Special Values onto a new sheet and tidy it up but if all you want are the numbers for the BAS you will probably not bother to do this.

Hope this helps.

David Gray  

Thanks David. That's certainly a quicker way to do it!

Tim Jasper  

Hi, think I am a bit late in this blog - but here is another vote to put it all back the way it was - So very ugly and really useless to alot of us bookkeepers/employers.

Seriously if you ever want to try out a new report - perhaps get one of us Xero lovers to "test" it for you to avoid these problems in the future - I would be more than happy to.

Cheers and thanks for listening to us and working tirelessly to fix the problem -

Amber Serna  

We are now at the end of another month and needing to prepare the IAS and the reporting process is no better. I only have 2 employees at the moment but I have had to produce 3 reports to get the required information that I need. I feel sorry for those out there more than a couple of employees.

Grip Leadership Accounts  

By the way when you produce a payroll activity summary for an individual employee there is no reference to that employee on the report when it is printed as a PDF.

Grip Leadership Accounts  

The old style report is still available at the end of the payrun process - fortunately but it is needed in the same format as an ad hoc report now.

I have just spent the last 45 minutes trying all the different options for a summary for a certain number of employees as we journal the wages to different sections of the P and L and need to make sure this is correct. What should have been a 30 second check back to the P and L is taking way too long.

And now wasting time on this post

As an aside - clients are hating these new format reports, pages and pages are printing - they don't really know how to use the filters and it really leaves a bad impression

Unfortunately speed to market of enhancements also means we can lose something that we relied on in an instant.

Serge Crismale  

Bringing back the old report has my vote, too. Particularly as the pay run summary report doesn't help with super accrual when there has been another unscheduled pay run in the same month. Strangely, running the super accrual report still forces me to manually add up the totals per employee if there has been a second, unscheduled pay run.

Eva Kaupp  

Hi Eva - you can group by employee in the super report (select the button that says "standard view" once you've run the report and choose "group by employee")

What is really annoying with the super reports though is that while you can sort on the screen by employee for instance, this doesn't carry forward to the PDF download which remains sorted by the default criteria.

What used to take minutes to process now takes forever to export into excel and fiddle around with. A big step backwards. Is there no testing by real users before these things are released?

Thomas BODGER  

Xero - please listen to us and do the reporting the old way. It worked, it was great, we loved it. Now it's hard to read and as far as I can tell the most essential report for me is not there with the same information, which is what I need.

Last quarter's payroll summary with a single line for each employee with totals at the bottom. It was so simple and so useful and now it's gone. Gives me totals only.

Whoever thought out the layout of that report got it right. No more and no less than what we needed. As far as I can tell, cannot be improved.

Also, having a pdf that comes up in a new tab is actually really helpful. When you're doing BAS you have to keep switching tabs and reports etc. To have the pdf sit there fixed and unchanging in it's tab so we can refer to it for ATO reporting or online super reporting is what we need.

Xero, please, I beg you - stop changing things that work great! We finally learn how to do something, it works well and you change it. For example - calling things Purchases and Sales. I don't feel like I'm 'Purchasing' my tax payments, or super contributions or even my employee wages. 'Outgoings', made sense, now it doesn't make sense. Sure, 'Purchases' might seem like an easier word, but seriously, if you're running a business you can learn to use words like 'Outgoings'. Don't treat people running businesses like idiots.

Again, stop changing things that work!

Seriously! Why make your users (and biggest sales reps) re-learn something unless it's absolutely necessary? I cannot be recommending Xero again until I feel like you've got things back on track.

(Changed 'feeling about Xero' to sad face) :(

(Happy to be part of testing or focus groups - ask me!)

Quenten Thomas  

Thanks, Tom - I'll give that a go. Also waiting for things to be returned back to normal...

Eva Kaupp  

Agreed with the above, we are a large organisation and the old Payroll Summary Report was ideal for calculating the Payroll Tax Liability especially as we employ over a few different states and need to total by state the employee resides in. With this new report I will need to obtain the figures from each individual employee instead of being able to see 'at a glance' the figures I require which will be a mind numbing task. Can the old report be reinstated as another option at all?
Thanks Sarah

Sarah Brown  

Agree, Agree, Agree!! Please change it back ASAP, this change in reporting is costing me money big time!! what was taking me 30 seconds to do, is now taking me over 30 min, My clients are on monthly packages not time billing, unfortunatly they were quoted package amounts before this reporting change happened and Xero was the latest and Greatest. you add that time loss up over numerous clients its quite an amount each reporting period, as a bookkeeping and accounting firm its very unprofessional if we are not consistant alot of my clients are not happy, :(( Why would you change it!! I myself was at a loss when our company director asked for the report for our firm and it took me 4 hours to get it to him. Dangerously close to scrapping Xero.

Sue Proctor  

Hi Stuart
We use this old report not only for BAS reporting, but also when reporting on employee performance. i.e. how much have we paid each employee in a given period, and what have they produced. To do that employee by employee is a massive pain in the arse, especially for larger employers. Please put it back to the old way.

Glenn Sharp  

You will be pleased to know that yesterday we released the report for those users that just have payroll admin access. The report is called the Payroll Employee Summary. The report will be rolled out to all users next week or the week after.

The question will no doubt arise as to why it's only available to certain types of users, and the answer is, it's just the way it is! There are release complexities that make this unavoidable. We're working to make this available to everyone as quickly as possible. Thanks for your patience.

Stuart McLeod (Xero Staff)  

Does that mean if you must ONLY have Payroll access ie if you have Financial Advisor, or Manage User or Provide Suport as well as Payroll Admin access then you can't see the report?

Kim Maine  

That's right Kim. You need to have Payroll Admin & None. As I said, we'll have it available to all users not long from now.

Stuart McLeod (Xero Staff)  

Appreciate your efforts. Looking forward to having this report available ASAP to those who most need it.

Kim Maine  

Hi @Stuart,

The report is WRONG.

Just created a dummy 'employee' for my practice with another of my email addresses and marked this one for none and payroll admin for all my clients so I could login and get the new report but it is wrong.

The Net Pay column is showing as zero for virtually all the employees except for one for in one of my clients. Out of about fifty employees over three companies I have checked only one is correct!

David Gray  

Hi David, can you log a ticket with support (support at xero dot com), please? Invite customer care in so we can see it, and in the email just refer to the community discussion so I can follow up.


Stuart McLeod (Xero Staff)  

Hi @Stuart.

All fixed now. Net pay figure is now correct. Thanks for the fast response.

David Gray  

Hi There
Just another vote to reinstate the old payroll reports that were in place - ie Payroll Summary Report totalled the same as that which you can print from the Pay Runs but for the monthly totals.

Jenny Hooper  


Another vote for
1. the old report that provided what is needed in a simple, clear format.AND
2. a process to confirm that proposed changes will actually work and not cause users and advisers frustration and wasted time.

John Pugh  

Another vote to bring it back, just spent 40 mins researching this, now I have to create another user to get the old report (if I understand what is written above), only have 2 clients on Xero and it is reasons like that this I don't transfer the other 30 or so from another package,

KerryAnn Black  

Ok, everyone. With this mornings release the old report has been reinstated. It's called the Payroll Employee Summary and is found with all the other payroll reports under Reports | All Reports.

Stuart McLeod (Xero Staff)  

Beautiful! Good work Stuart, thanks for listening.

James Carey  

Hi Stuart, That's awesome! Thanks for listening to us.

Samantha Lenc  

Yippedy doo dah! Thanks Stuart

Kim Maine  

Hello. I am trying to check the total amount paid and taxes (year to date) for individual employee. I am just not able to get individual summaries, rather only total amounts for all the eomployees

Chintan Doshi  

How do i see the summaries for individual employees?

Chintan Doshi