A project to migrate 57 childcare centres onto one cloud-based payroll system was achieved in nine weeks by Affinity Education Group (ASX: AFJ).

The group provides childcare to children aged from six weeks up to 12 years.

Affinity Education Group CFO John Bairstow said the 57 childcare centres were acquired in 2013 from other owners which meant they had different payroll systems, or in some cases, none.

"Many of the centres had no accounting system or it was done by an external accountant," he said.

"Our model wasn't to have an in-house IT system, we wanted to go with a payroll system based in the cloud because there was no upfront capital required. It also allows us to add acquisitions in the future easily.

"We knew we would be doing our first pay run in early December so we had to move quickly."

After meeting with several vendors, the Group selected Presence of IT's EC-Payroll platform. According to Bairstow, the vendor grasped "the urgency" of the situation.

"It was nine weeks from start to finish for the new accounting and payroll system. Presence of IT also appreciated that we couldn't get all of the applications up and running on day one. We needed to be able to pay people."

He added that the payroll system performed well and more than 400 staff were paid in time for Christmas 2013.