How To Choose Payroll Software For Your Small Business

No matter how small or large your business happens to be, if you have employees then payroll software can definitely make your life easier. Payroll software programs allow you to pay workers through direct deposit instead of by paper check. They allow you to onboard employees online and many will calculate state and federal taxes for you while also taking care of your business tax filings and payments.
Payroll software can definitely be worth the investment if you choose the right program. In order to choose the right software however, you need to be aware of the programs that are available and compare and contrast some of the features. You can find a number of basic software programs that will do menial tasks for you or you can invest in something that is going to provide you with all of the payroll services that you need.


QuickBooks is probably the most commonly known payroll software program that is available. Many offices use this program and it offers a number of benefits. When you choose to use QuickBooks, your payroll setup will be done by experts. This program also integrates with the QuickBooks accounting software so if you are already using that, the payroll program just makes sense. It offers automatic filing and payment of all of your payroll taxes and a few additional benefits. Note however, that this can be an expensive program, particularly if you have only a few employees.
QuickBooks is a good choice if you feel that you may need assistance in setting up payroll. They will walk you through the process and ensure that everything is ready for you. This includes setting up tax filings and payments. Tax payments for your business are handled through the program and the company guarantees that paychecks and payroll taxes are done properly without any mistakes.


Gusto is another popularly known program that offers a number of functions and features. Gusto provides self onboarding for employees. They simply log on and set themselves up. It will handle automatic tax payments and can be integrated with your existing accounting software if you have such a program installed. This one can also be a bit expensive for businesses that currently have fewer than ten employees. Gusto gives you a complete suite of payroll functions. Employee self onboarding allows new employees to log on and enter their own personal information. These new employees are also automatically reported through Gusto to the government for tax purposes and each employee receives a pay stub through their email.
All taxes for your business are automated through Gusto, and direct deposits are done with no additional charge. You can also administer pretax employee benefits like retirement plans and health insurance for employees directly through the program.


OnPay is a very affordable cloud based software program that can help you to keep track of your payroll and manage it from a number of devices. The software program is normally chosen by businesses that have ten or fewer employees. The functions include payroll deductions and payroll tax payments that are automated, and they guarantee accurate tax filings and payments. You can manage payroll from your laptop or even your smartphone since this is a cloud based program. Basically, you can use any device that has an internet connection and support is offered in a number of mediums. The cost for paying employees through direct deposit is not covered in the cost of the software program, however. You will also incur separate charges for having W-2 forms printed and mailed to your employees at the end of the year.

Patriot Software

Patriot Software is also affordable, although there are additional costs for paying vendors and contractors. The company offers affordable payroll options for businesses that have up to 100 employees. Functions include free setup and support. You have the ability to print employee payroll checks or you can opt for direct deposit. The software program also handles automated tax filing and will guarantee that all payments of local, state and federal taxes will be made on time. This includes filing W-2 and W-3 tax forms. You will need to purchase a separate software program if you want to pay contractors and vendors as this one will only keep track of payroll for actual employees.

How To Choose

There are of course, numbers of other software programs that can help you to manage your payroll, but how do you choose? You need to first consider how many employees you have, or how many employees you plan to have in the future. Some programs are a bit costly for companies that have fewer than ten employees, but if you plan to increase your workforce in the next few months then this may be a feasible purchase. Remember that you are essentially investing in your business so this choice should not be made simply based on cost alone. There are many low cost payroll systems that you can install but not all of them will give you the functions and features that you may need. This is why research and comparisons are always a good idea.

You want to know that the program you invest in will handle all of your payroll needs. Otherwise, you would be just as well off without it. If you have decided to forgo hiring an accountant for your payroll and prefer instead to do it yourself, there are some good programs that can help you. Take some time to think about what you need. Write down your most important payroll needs and when you are looking at programs, make sure that you are only considering those that meet your specific needs. Not all payroll software is going to be best for all businesses. You may need something that many of these programs does not offer. Take time to know what you need in terms of what the software can do before you start looking at cost. Finding the right payroll system is more about functions than it is about investment.

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