Payroll has been slowly changing over the past decade, but 2020 felt like a tipping point. During the pandemic, payroll teams played a crucial role to make sure people got the money and support they needed to keep going in a global crisis. But payroll has been preparing for this sea change for a while. New AI and data analysis tools are freeing up payroll teams to move beyond compliance and efficiency to start playing a more strategic role in their company’s direction.

We want to help you understand — and lead — this transformation in your own workplace. The ReThink Quarterly is sharing big-picture discussions with payroll, finance and HR professionals alongside real stories of people and their paychecks.

For this first edition of the ReThink Quarterly, we’ve started with a global theme — Lifelines. In a globally connected world, people rely on their paychecks not only to support themselves but to support their loved ones and maintain connections to their home countries.

In 2019, a record 281 million people lived in a country other than their own, sending home $717 billion in remittances. These remittances demonstrate the power of the paycheck — every dollar is a kind of venture capital, funding innumerable businesses and households. Even small amounts of money can make a big difference, but the cost of sending money home varies greatly depending on where you live.