The representation of women in the finance industry has always been imbalanced, with significantly fewer women than men in leadership positions. The industry has presented a tougher work-life balance to its female employees, often requiring them to make the choice between family and career. In this interview, we speak with Tatjana Domovits, the Founder and Group CEO of Mercans, about her journey in the industry and her thoughts on how to support women in payroll. Learn more below.
“You’ve worked in payroll for 20+ years and have worn many hats during the course of your career. Looking back at your career, what made you pursue a chartered status in Payroll?”
“At the outset of my career, I joined EY’s audit practice and was captivated by the professional services industry. Having handled audits for a number of years, I discerned that I could enhance the value proposition for clients by helping them tackle their everyday challenges and enhancing operational efficiency. During my tenure auditing clients’ payroll, I observed that the payroll processes were largely manual and entailed significant time investments. This led me to contemplate ways of digitizing payroll processes, however, I required a deeper comprehension of payroll processes. Consequently, I applied for a position in payroll and the ensuing developments are well-known.” she replied.
“What does your usual day look like as the Founder and Group CEO at Mercans?”
Tatjana further added, “One aspect of my attraction to the payroll field is the dynamic nature of the job. While standardization and efficiency are crucial in payroll, every new client and project presents its own distinct challenges. As a payroll professional, I am tasked with assembling the most adept individuals in the field and devising creative solutions to address clients’ unique issues.
To achieve this, a significant portion of my time is devoted to liaising with our global teams and diverse departments. I place a high value on active listening, and attentively engaging with our clients and payroll experts to better comprehend their challenges and proposed enhancements. Daily consultations with our IT, implementation and compliance teams form a fundamental part of my routine.
Moreover, I devote at least thirty minutes each day to supporting our employees with any personal or professional difficulties they may encounter.”
“Tatjana, can you tell us about your journey of overcoming barriers in the payroll industry?”
She continues, “For women pursuing professional careers, striking a balance between work and personal life can be a daunting challenge. It is regrettably commonplace for women to miss important events such as their children’s birthdays, school functions, and sporting events in the pursuit of their careers. For this reason, I am passionately committed not only to building a thriving global payroll enterprise but also to supporting women in achieving a healthy work-life balance. To this end, I aim to provide women with payroll technology that enables them to work smarter and from any location in the world. Knowing that the technology we have built at Mercans helps our and our clients’ female employees to spend more time with their families has been one of my biggest motivators.”
We were also curious about understanding her role and field. So, we asked, “During your journey in the industry, how have you played a role as an ambassador in this field? Why is being an advocate for the profession such an important part of your career?”
She says, “I take immense pride in the achievements of Mercans and am fervently committed to transforming the payroll industry. The unwavering dedication of our employees and payroll professionals around the world has left a profound impression on me. While many may take for granted the prompt and precise payment they receive, in reality, a significant amount of hard work and effort is required to ensure that such outcomes are consistently achieved. As a result, I have become an outspoken advocate for those in the payroll industry and champion the automation of payroll processes.”
Another thing we wanted to know was the challenges Tatjana has faced and how she handles them. So we further asked, “What are some of the challenges that women face in the payroll industry, and how can they overcome them?”
“The gender disparity in the payroll industry is one of several obstacles that women may encounter. It is essential that women identify their passions and remain steadfast in their goals. Equally critical is the presence of a robust support network, whether it be a mentor, coach, or community of like-minded colleagues. Women must also be willing to take risks and challenge the status quo. In the instance of Mercans, many industry experts expressed skepticism at our ambitious goal of developing a proprietary global payroll software to support 160 countries. Despite this, we persevered, taking on the risk and subsequently developing a software that has propelled Mercans to the forefront of payroll technology innovation.” Tatjana replied.
“What do you think can be done to encourage more women to pursue careers in payroll and finance?”
She replies, “In my opinion, it is critical that we begin at the foundation by inspiring young girls to pursue STEM subjects during their school years. Additionally, we must strive to elevate awareness about the numerous career prospects within payroll and finance. At Mercans, we are committed to cultivating a more diverse and inclusive working environment, and we urge other organizations to follow suit. It is imperative to provide women with opportunities to progress and enhance their competencies, as well as guaranteeing that they receive equitable compensation for their contributions.”
Lastly, we asked her, “What advice would you give to the next generation of women in payroll and finance?”
“My advice to the next generation of women in payroll and finance is to find their passion, believe in their vision, and take care of their team members and clients. They should also not be afraid to take risks and challenge the status quo. Women have a unique perspective to offer in the payroll industry, and we need more women in leadership positions to drive change and innovation.” she concluded.
Tatjana Domovits, Group CEO of Mercans, is an inspiring leader who has overcome barriers in the payroll industry and is now working to create a more diverse and inclusive workplace. Her advice for the next generation of women in payroll and finance is to find their passion, believe in their vision, and not be afraid to take risks. By following these principles, women can achieve great success in their careers and drive change.
Connect with Tatjana Domovits on LinkedIn.