Heriot Watt Case Study 900 X 330Pxl

Payroll payments for the global workforce

Wed 12 Jun 2019

Heriot-Watt University had around 100 employees living and working in Dubai and wanted to separate these employees from the UK payroll. However, they faced a number of issues preventing them from successfully planning and executing an in-house solution that could address these issues. They asked Equiniti to provide and implement a payroll and payments solution that overcame the challenges they faced and which ensured that their employees based in Dubai received the correct payments in a timely manner.


  • A number of their employees based in Dubai were deemed to be UK nationals while others were considered UAE nationals
  • Approximately 10% of their employees were paying UK National Insurance
  • More than 10% of their employees were paying UK student loans

“Payroll for all was processed in GBP and the exchange rate that was used was a factor of 6.75, resulting in the employees [in Dubai] facing the problem of inflated amounts being deducted from their gross pay. In other words, they weren’t being paid the correct amount. Plus, they couldn’t use their payslips when applying for things like loans.”  Payroll Manager, Heriot-Watt University


“The employees are now paid in dirhams and the correct amount of local currency is received due to the way we [Equiniti] apply the exchange rate. They can now also use their payslips for loans if required.”  Payroll Manager, Heriot-Watt University

EQ presented the university with a combined global payroll and payments solution that best suited their needs. Within a ten week period, we helped the university establish a separate payroll for their Dubai-based employees, converting GBP to AED.

This included the provision of payslips showing:

  • Net pay in GBP
  • Currency exchange rate
  • Net pay in AED
  • Provision of a payments service
  • Beneficiary payments

“The project went really well due to the fact that we had open and honest conversations. The level of knowledge held by [EQ] enhanced the process. The EQPay [formerly EQGlobal] site makes the processing of the salary payments seamless. Plus, it validates all the bank details, thus ensuring all payments sent are in the correct formats increasing the number of payments sent straight-through, ensuring the recipient receives their payment in a timely manner.” Payroll Manager, Heriot-Watt University

For more information, please contact us at payments@equiniti.com