Considerations to Make While Choosing A Payroll Service
Determining how to choose a payroll service for your business can be difficult. There are many payroll software providers and features from which you can choose.
Whether this is your first time looking for payroll software or you want to switch software programs, you need to know what to consider. Knowing what to look for in a payroll service can help you make a good purchase.
We want you to make an excellent payroll service choice the first time. That’s why we created affordable payroll software that is easy to use. But, we also want you to make superior business decisions, which is why we created a guide about how to choose a payroll service
A few of the points you can learn about in this guide include types of payroll software, software costs, and software security.
In each of the 10 sections, we provide you with a list of questions to ask yourself. The questions are helpful tools to assist you in thinking about your needs and what type of software will work best for your business.
The Most Important Things to Consider When Choosing a Payroll Provider
Let’s be honest—most payroll companies seem like they’re doing the same thing. That’s why it’s SUPER overwhelming to figure out which company to go with. Beyond looking at the basic features and price tag, what else makes a payroll service stand out?
Over the years, I’ve helped many small business owners weigh the pros and cons of providers to find their perfect payroll software. In my years of research, I’ve looked at A LOT of providers and seen the good, the bad, and the ugly. After reviewing nearly every provider out there, I’ve learned that a few things can make or break your payroll experience.
Easy to use
Some payroll platforms look like they haven’t been updated since 2004. Think small, barely readable text, menus nested within menus, and the saddest, drabbiest grey you’ve ever seen.
Made for small business owners
Some payroll companies are geared towards accountants, and the language within the platform reflects that. Jargon. Technical language. Words you’ve never heard before. After your first payroll run, you can feel so overwhelmed that you never want to do it again.
Grows with your business
Any time you invest in financial software, choose the option that will grow with your business. This means looking for the features you need right now and the features you’ll need one, three, and five years down the road (even if you’re not there yet)
Choosing a Payroll System: Factors to Help You Decide
If you’ve decided you want to use software to run your business’s payroll, you might worry about the difficulty of choosing a payroll system. To weed through the many services out there, you need to know what to look for.
Choosing a Payroll System
Using payroll software can save you time and money so you can focus on growing your business.
Online vs. desktop software
There are two types of software to choose from before you compare payroll services: online and desktop software. What you choose depends on the type of business you have, your lifestyle, and your personal preference.
Online software: Online software, or cloud payroll software, means you can access payroll anytime and anywhere. All you need is internet access to run payroll, which is beneficial if you are constantly on the go. With online software, you can access your payroll records from more than one device. Log in to a computer at your business or your mobile device at home.
Desktop software: For desktop software, you will download the software program onto your computer. You can only run payroll on the computer that has the software. You do not need internet access to run payroll with this option.
How to Choose a Payroll Service for Your Business
There are a lot of options available when choosing a payroll service. You may be researching everything from payroll software to bookkeepers. When selecting a provider, consider the size of your business and the complexity of payroll operations. In our list, we explain the different types of payroll services available, so you can make the right decision for your business.
Learn What Different Payroll Providers Do
To make the best choice for payroll, you’ll need first to understand the different types of payroll outsourcing services that are out there. This list defines payroll software, bookkeepers, PEOs, and local payroll services.
Payroll software are systems that you can use to help manage your payroll or some aspects of it—paychecks and payroll taxes (payments and filing). There are both online options and those you can install on your PC; please note, many employers today prefer online providers for the convenience and ability to access it from anywhere. Some of the more quality software has a team of professionals who will assist you with setup, compliance questions, and one-off issues
Bookkeepers are the obvious choice for some employers when they already have one keeping their financial records in order. The important thing to consider is the bookkeeper’s level of payroll knowledge. Some are experts in compliance and stay abreast of federal and state laws governing how employees and taxes should be paid; they may offer a guarantee to cover any penalties that arise. Others are more accustomed to the financial side of payroll, calculations, payments, and maintaining records; these bookkeepers can ensure your employees are paid but may run into some legal snags along the way.
Professional Employment Organizations
Professional employment organizations (PEO) are companies that partner with you on employing your workers. While you manage day-to-day operations, the PEO handles payments, taxes, deductions, and makes sure you don’t break any payroll laws.
How to Choose the Best Payroll Service for your Company
Every company has to pay their employees. Sometimes the most experienced business owners can find themselves spending a large amount of time trying to process payroll monthly. Outsourcing this function to a payroll provider can be very beneficial and help reduce costs. However, finding the right one, can be challenging.
Checklist: Before choosing a payroll provider, you will want to make a checklist of what your company needs. This will help you prepare questions to ask a provider once you start researching your options. Some questions to ask yourself are: Do you need a payroll provider that can process multi-state payroll and handle different state taxes? How many employees will they be processing payroll for? Do you need additional HR services such as benefits, onboarding, etc.? It is important to be open to other options. They may offer a service you didn’t know you could benefit from.
Ask a lot of questions: It is important to ask a lot of questions when researching a payroll provider. You will want to essentially interview them to make sure they are the best fit for your company. Review your checklist and make sure you are asking questions that cover all of your company’s needs. Make sure to ask questions that touch on the provider’s pricing, software capabilities, taxes, reports, customization, etc.
Consider the Benefits: Using a payroll provider can help you in many ways.
Reduce Cost/Risk: By being the employer of record, the payroll provider will reduce your company’s risk.
Offload Duties: The payroll provider can assist with the onboarding process, benefits and payroll processing. Offloading these functions will allow your HR team to focus on other functions & projects that are important to your organization.
Regulation Changes: Payroll providers stay up to date with changes in government regulations and will avoid any cost/penalties.
Payroll Knowledge Risk: If you have one person doing your payroll and they end up leaving, this could cause a lot of risk. Using a payroll provider, you will not have to worry about that burden.