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Driving Payroll – How to get payroll into the driver’s seat

NZPPA’s 5th Annual Payroll Leaders Summit is an essential event for the ongoing professional development of leaders in payroll. If we invest now in present and future leaders, we build the payroll profession to be strong, dynamic and recognised as a true business partner to organisations rather than just another cost.

The summit is aimed at:

  • Existing payroll managers and team leaders
  • Upcoming or new payroll managers and team leaders
  • Sole charge payroll practitioners that want to raise the profile of payroll within their organisation.
This is a payroll summit created and run by payroll people for payroll people!

This year’s theme:

This year’s summit is about moving a payroll leader out of the passenger’s seat in the business to the driver’s seat.

  • Payroll sets the direction for payroll
    • The direction payroll needs to be driving towards to be successful for payroll and the business.
  • Payroll sets the speed for payroll
    • Payroll change can effectively be led to ensure outcomes for payroll and the business are achieved.
  • Payroll sets the safety for payroll
    • Payroll is focused on compliance, security and identifying and eliminating risk for payroll and the business.

Format of the 5th Annual Payroll Leaders Summit (now a 2-day event):

  • Day one (20 June 2019), standard conference programme with payroll leaders and leadership SMEs sharing their insights and techniques on how, as payroll leaders, we can be the driver for payroll and not the passenger.
  • Day two (21 June 2019), will have two half-day workshops that allow attendees to do more in-depth practical workshop activities, networking and sharing ideas with their peers along with reflecting on what has been learnt and how it can be used back in the payroll environment.

Conference programme:

5th Annual Payroll Leaders Summit Conference Programme has been released click here

Platinum Sponsor:

NZPPA is always happy to have an industry leader as a sponsor to help in supporting the development of payroll as a profession in New Zealand.

Datacom Payroll has been the payroll provider for thousands of businesses for over 50 years.

Our cloud-based payroll suite offers payroll solutions to suit every business size and complexity with a truly unique approach in technological innovation. Whether you’re a small, medium or large business; we have a pay system just right for your organisation.

Should you need payroll outsourcing, where we take care of everything to do with your payroll or a complete in-house payroll requirement; we really do have the payroll system for your business.

Our pay systems are simple, effective and inexpensive. No hardware or software to buy and no upgrades to install. All underpinned and supported by New Zealand’s largest information technology company.

Phone: 0800 72 97 97

Email: [email protected]


Speakers at this year’s summit

 NZPPA has always been lucky through our extensive network to access a range of professional payroll SME’s as speakers at our events.  For this year’s leadership summit will have been able to invite a range of recognise payroll leaders to talk to summit attendees.

Summit MC, Gary Hollier is a Payroll Manager with the Todd Corporation and has over 34 year’s experience in the industry.

Starting his payroll career ‘by accident’ as a basic grade clerk in the Government Printing Office in 1984, he has worked predominately in the public sector over the last 30 years, more recently moving into private sector roles.

Over the course of his 3 decades in payroll Gary has worked at all levels, progressing from the original basic grade clerk role in the 80’s through Payroll Team Leader positions and ultimately to Payroll Manager. He has managed teams ranging in size from 1 remote reportee located 340km away, up to teams of 36 employees.

Arlene White Chief Executive. Education Payroll Limited

Arlene comes to EPL from Inland Revenue, where she was the Deputy Commissioner, Service Delivery for the past 5+ years. A lifelong public servant, Arlene began her career at the Canada Revenue Agency and worked in progressively more responsible roles there, prior to immigrating to New Zealand in March 2012 to take up the role with Inland Revenue.

Arlene spent the majority of her career in regional operations before moving to CRA Headquarters as the Assistant Commissioner, Assessment and Benefit Services Branch. In this role she was responsible for a large service delivery operation as well as leading several key business transformation initiatives including the development and promotion of electronic services.

Arlene holds a Bachelor of Science degree,majoring in mathematics, from the University of Manitoba (Canada). She also has a two year accounting certificate and a second language proficiency (French).

Maxine Hefford (Business Manager – Payroll Services, Datacom Payroll)

Maxine has been with Datacom Payroll for more than two decades where she oversees and manages the payroll bureau team who processes payroll for Datacom’s outsource clients in New Zealand.

Maxine has an extensive knowledge with legislation and an in-depth understanding of the payroll in its entirety. Maxine has her heart in payroll and is passionate with what she does, and she enjoys being surrounded by capable and enthusiastic people.

Grant MyHill

Manager Payroll & HRIS Projects, Ministry of Social Development

A little about me.

Always worked of Ministry of Social Development having joined the Department of Social Welfare straight from school. Moved from delivering benefits and pensions in the community to delivering payroll services to the ministry’s 12,500 employees.

Currently leading a payroll team of 18 to provide shared services to MSD, Oranga Tamariki and Social Investment Agency.

Cheryl O’Brien

Head of NZ Payroll and Credit Management & Debt Recovery, Fletcher Building, New Zealand

Cheryl is a finance and credit professional with over 30 years’ experience in NZ, Australia and Europe holding a BA (Hons) in Business from University of West London, CICM (Grad) and is a member of NZPPA, AICM and RITANZ. Cheryl has held senior roles in trade credit insurance, professional services, telecoms, building and construction sectors across multiple jurisdictions and has written several articles on current issues in credit management. Cheryl is Head of Fletcher Building’s NZ Payroll function as well as the Credit Management and Debt Recovery function and has a special interest in creating high performing, agile teams. Cheryl is passionate about adding value to the business through back office transformation and preparing the workforce and functional processes for digitalisation.

Warick Heads, National Director Payroll Services

Warick Heads is the National Director of Payroll Services at Findex. He leads a team of 16 payroll administrators, who provide payroll outsourcing solutions to employers the length and breadth of New Zealand. Processing approximately 900 payrolls in any one month period, the Findex payroll team has exposure to every facet of payroll related issue that can occur when employing and paying staff.

Warick has presented at annual NZPPA conferences, and was a presenter at the inaugural NZPPA payroll leader’s summit in 2014.

Ian Whitney, IRD

joined Inland Revenue in November 2017. Ian was specifically engaged to account manage payroll software providers through the impacts of the changes being delivered by the BT programme. Ian has spent the previous nine years working on Payroll and HRIS projects and has experience from multiple perspectives having lead several global Payroll and HRIS implementations as a consultant and been a project manager for clients implementing Payroll / HRIS solutions.

Brydon Tweedie, IRD

joined Inland Revenue in August 1998. Brydon’s early roles with the department were in Christchurch and Wellington contact centres. From there Brydon progressed to leadership roles both in complaints management and ministerial services. A stint as a relationship manager in KiwiSaver, lead to three and a half years as the advisor to the Deputy Commissioner of Service Delivery. Recent roles include a period of time in Business Transformation programme as well as 14 months as a private secretary in the Minister of Revenue’s office.

David Jenkins, NZPPA CEO

David Jenkins formed NZPPA in 2007 when he saw there was no organisation looking after the needs of payroll personnel and departments in New Zealand.

With more than twenty-five years of consulting experience at a senior level in New Zealand, Australia, and globally, he specialises in payroll and human resource management, employee relations, personnel learning and development, and information technology (payroll and HRIS).

David is passionate about payroll and payroll people, his aim is to make payroll a recognised profession in New Zealand

Leaders Summit Motivation Speaker

Melodie Robinson is a well-known sports journalist and commentator. Her current role is TVNZ’s General Manager, Sports and Events. She is leading the sport and event strategy for TVNZ’s coverage of global sporting events such as Rugby World Cup 2019, Paralympic Games 2020 and America’s Cup 2021.

Melodie played rugby union at international level, winning two world cups with the Black Ferns. Playing blindside or openside flanker, she played in 18 tests with the Ferns from 1996 to 2002. While playing rugby at the elite level, she gained a BA from the University of Otago, as well as studying Journalism in Wellington. Her first work was in radio – working at the press gallery in Wellington covering politics.

This unstoppable high-achiever has recently completed an MBA at Auckland University’s Business School and is New Zealand’s first Maori Barbie as part of Mattel’s role model line.

Melodie is a media personality with high credibility in the sporting world and a professional wealth of experience like no other.

Payroll Summit Leadership Workshops – 21 June 2019

On the second day of the summit we will be running two interactive workshops where attendees can learn, and practice a range of skills and tools that can be taken back to their workplace to aid in putting payroll in the driver’s seat.

A New Way to Roll for Payroll – How to influence the top table to get what you want

Session One – Mindset and Mood

Outcomes Session One

Taking Control From Victim to Voice, from Enemy to Friend. How to change the story to get what you want. Participants will learn how challenging and reframing current interpretations and stories is the first step to bringing about change.

We Are Them. Participants will learn about the importance of focusing effort on areas that are within their scope of control and influence, versus spending time on areas of concern over which they have no direct power or control. They will learn that pointing the finger of blame at others only reduces their own power and influence.

Above the Line. Participants will engage in and learn a simple behaviourial framework for being a positive voice.


Session Two – Skills and Tools

Outcomes from Session Two

Influencing Different Styles. Often we fall into the trap of thinking that what is important to us is important to others. Participants will learn how to adapt their approaches depending on the type of people they are trying to influence.

Psychology of influence. Participants will learn the psychology of influencing and learn three strategies and ten tactics for being an effective influencer in their day to day leadership.

Influencing Template. Participants will be provided with an influencing planning template for influencing a major challenge or project.



Emma Holderness


Emma partners with leaders to develop the strengths and capabilities of their teams to increase engagement and help build a

lasting leadership culture.

She has worked as a development consultant and leadership coach, a manager in the public sector, and was a senior officer in the Royal New Zealand Air Force, holding both command positions and specialist roles in HR and Training, along with various project roles.

Emma enjoys working closely with organisations to effect change. She has worked with executive teams in both the public and private sector, and with various leadership teams to create specialist programmes in coaching, strengths-based leadership, and culture change. Emma has facilitated High-Performing Teams sessions for a variety of agencies, and is skilled in using assessment tools such as Clifton Strengths, DiSC, and TMI to help discover team dynamics and uncover potential blind spots.

Emma joined Catapult in 2017. She has worked as a development consultant and leadership coach, a manager in the public sector, and was a senior officer in the Royal New Zealand Air Force, holding both command positions and specialist roles in HR and Training, along with various project roles.


Liz Riversdale



Liz has helped people to make lasting change for over 30 years.

She has been a leadership facilitator and coach for 13 years.

Prior to this Liz was a counsellor in New Zealand and England. For six years she lectured in social work at Te Wānanga O Aotearoa, where she led academic teams who designed and delivered a degree and certificate in social work.

She also completed three years’ intensive coach training and was a programme manager for an international training and development company.

Liz Riversdale is a leadership facilitator and coach with a wealth of experience. She is known for her warm, insightful and challenging style. Her focus is on creating lasting change that makes a profound difference in her clients’ professional and personal lives.



The James Cook Hotel is conveniently located on The Terrace. The hotel is within walking distance to Shed 6, TSB Arena, Te Papa, the train station, prominent Wellington corporations and government offices.

Address: 147 The Terrace, Wellington, New Zealand
Phone: +64 (4) 499 9500
Toll Free in New Zealand: 0800 27 53 37
Email: [email protected]

There are limited summit spaces available so please book early to secure your seat!

Summit cost:

Early bird pricing until the end of April:

Seats for this event are strictly on a first-come-first-served basis. We can provide additional discounts for group bookings.

Rates Description
$725 + GST NZPPA member rate for the two-day conference
$1050 + GST Non-member rate for the two-day conference

To book for the 5th Annual Payroll Leaders’ Summit (early bird rate), click here.

Conference rate from the 1 May:

Rates Description
$895 + GST NZPPA member rate for the two-day conference
$1250 + GST Non-member rate for the two-day conference

Additional discounts for multiple bookings:

If you want to book more than one attendee, additional discounts are available, please email: [email protected]

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