Re: Frying pan
Is there a reason that a payroll application wouldn't be suited for an open source collaborative project?
Support contracts that finance departments would reliably pay to gain the new payroll rules as they change through the year.
And auditors can insist on 3rd party signed and validated binary build / install.
(Not much different to the way in which small businesses using trade weighing scales have to produce calibration certificates to inspectors )
The core of the application, UI, data storage could be a collaborative platform.
There's questions about how much of the application could be common for a substantial portion of the world to share, but there are plenty of existing applications around the world that can be learned from.
There are businesses writing and maintaining payroll applications for small customer bases within much smaller jurisdictions than the UK, and sustainable for not much money per year.
And there are businesses coping using old ERP systems where the database and rules have had minimal core changes in 30 years. A module offered to add functionality specific to an industry's regulations. And a UI makeover once per decade interacting with the same rules at the back.