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Choosing a Payroll Company for Your Business

Choosing a payroll company for your business doesn’t have to be a tough decision. Today, we’re ranking the best payroll companies for businesses of all sizes.

4 Best Payroll Companies To Use For Your Business

Intuit Online Payroll – Payroll Company

Intuit Payroll Free Trial

Intuit Online Payroll is arguably the most popular payroll software in the world today. With full QuickBooks support and a wide range of cloud-based features, Intuit Online Payroll is an ideal choice for business owners who like to be able to complete payroll anywhere in the world.

With Intuit Online Payroll, you get an excellent web-based interface that will be familiar to anybody who’s used QuickBooks before. There are also mobile apps for Android and iOS.

But the best benefit of Intuit Online Payroll is the instant synchronization with QuickBooks. Although most payroll software integrates smoothly with QuickBooks, few payroll software programs do it as well as Intuit Online Payroll.

The moment you run payroll, that data is synced through the cloud to your QuickBooks Online account. There’s never any need for double entry – it’s smooth, fast, and easy.

Better yet, if you don’t own either QuickBooks or Online Payroll, then you can bundle both software programs together to save 50% off the price of each.

In any case, here are the most important Intuit Online Payroll features you need to know about before you use this payroll company for your business:

Competitive Pricing

Intuit Online Payroll tends to be cheaper than most of its competitors (although it’s not cheaper than all of them). Here’s how much you can expect to pay on Intuit Online Payroll’s various pricing plans:

-Basic ($20 per month + $2 per employee per month): This plan gives you easy paycheck generation and the ability to pay by checks or direct deposit. To create a paycheck, you just enter hours.

-Enhanced ($31.20 per month + $2 per employee per month): The Enhanced version is the most popular Intuit Online Payroll plan. It gives you the ability to quickly file paychecks by entering hours, but it also includes payroll tax forms and electronic W-2 form submission at year-end. If you’re buying payroll software to help with your payroll taxes, then the Enhanced version is your best option.

-Full Service ($79 per month + $2 per employee per month): Intuit’s Full Service package dedicates an Intuit employee to running your business’s payroll. That Intuit employee files and pays taxes on your behalf. More importantly, Intuit guarantees that your business will not experience any tax penalties due to inaccurate amounts or missed deadlines. If you do experience a tax penalty, Intuit will pay it for you.

For most businesses, Enhanced strikes the right balance between price and value. At that level, Intuit costs about $50 per month for a business with ten employees.

Available Internationally

Not all of the payroll systems listed here supports international businesses. Whether you have overseas employees or you’re based overseas, Intuit Online Payroll supports countries around the world. Supported countries include Canada, Australia, France, South Africa, United Arab Emirates, India, Philippines, Singapore, Brazil, Ireland, and the United Kingdom.

Tax Accuracy Guarantee

Intuit Online Payroll only guarantees protection from tax penalties on its highest plan. Some of the other payroll companies listed here will guarantee protection across all plans.

Scalable

Adding companies or upgrading your account is straightforward with Intuit Online Payroll. The payroll company has new hire entry forms that make it easy.

The Best Integration with QuickBooks

If you’re like thousands of businesses across America, then you rely on QuickBooks every day to do your business’s bookkeeping. Most payroll software syncs well with QuickBooks, but none of them sync as well with QuickBooks as Intuit Online Payroll. There’s never any need for manual entry. All data is copied through the cloud – so you never waste your time or have to worry about inaccuracies in your bookkeeping.

You Need to Pay Extra for Certain Features

Intuit Online Payroll is only competitively-priced if your business has basic needs: like if you only have W-2 employees. If you need to pay 1099 contractors, then you’ll need to add another $15 per month onto your Intuit Online Payroll subscription, for example. Since other payroll programs include these features for free, this is an important distinction between Intuit Online Payroll and its competitors.

Conclusion: Is Intuit Online Payroll the Right Payroll Company for your Business?

Intuit Online Payroll’s greatest assets are its competitive price and its full QuickBooks synchronization. It doesn’t have an extensive range of features, but it does have enough features to satisfy the needs of many basic businesses (like a business that only has W-2 employees and no 1099 contractors). If that’s the case with your business, and you already depend on QuickBooks, then there’s nothing wrong with trusting your business’s payroll to Intuit Online Payroll.

Gusto – Payroll Company

GustoGusto was known as ZenPayroll until the company suddenly decided to rebrand itself in September 2015. That rebranding doesn’t really affect the payroll side of the business. The company mostly rebranded to help advertise its services as a health insurance and workers’ compensation provider.

Today, Gusto maintains many of the same good practices as Zen Payroll – including competitive pricing and accurate tax filings across all 50 states.

Here are some of Gusto’s key features you need to know about before you use this payroll company for your business.

Pricing

Gusto costs $29 per month as a base rate plus an additional $6 per employee. That’s a higher per employee rate than most competitors, although Gusto does provide you with more extras than its competitors. The base rate, for example, covers W2s, W-3s, and 1099 contractor submissions, for example. The same can’t be said even for larger competitors like Intuit Online Payroll (which charges you an extra $15 per month for 1099 contractor filings). In any case, Gusto’s pricing may seem more expensive at first glance, but can actually save you money over its competitors depending on the unique needs of your business.

Easy-to-Use UI

Gusto’s UI is famous for its usability. On the payroll side of things, running payroll is a breeze over the company’s web-based interface that can be accessed from any desktop, laptop, or mobile device. There are no mobile apps available, but that’s for a good reason: the company deliberately chose to avoid using mobile apps to ensure security wasn’t an issue. With mobile apps, sensitive employee data would have to be stored on customers’ phones, and that’s not ideal. In any case, the mobile-optimized website looks and feels like a mobile app, so you’re unlikely to notice a major difference.

Chrome App for Employees

Gusto is also renowned for its friendliness towards employees. If you like your employees to be able to see their paystubs and payroll information at a glance without needing to check with you, then Gusto is a good option. Your employees can install things like Gusto’s Employee App for Chrome. This app lets customers view everything about their paystub from an easy online interface.

AutoPilot

Most payroll software on this list requires at least some manual intervention to run payroll. You have to click some buttons, for example, or enter employee information. But thanks to Gusto’s AutoPilot feature, you can literally let payroll run itself. The payroll will run itself every pay period according to your instructions and then deliver a notification when payroll is complete. Some hands-on business owners may find this uncomfortable, while others will appreciate the hands-off approach.

2 Month Free Trial

One final thing that distinguishes Gusto from its competitors is its two month free trial. While other payroll companies typically provide a 30 day free trial, Gusto has expanded that to 2 months, giving you plenty of time to decide if you want to pay for Gusto or not.

Conclusion: Is Gusto the Right Payroll Company for Your Business?

Gusto is the best payroll company for businesses that like to automate everything. You can literally setup payroll and forget about it – as long as things don’t change much from week to week.

Other features – like the employee app for Chrome – are helpful for both business owners and employees. And with a 2 month free trial to check it out, you can be 100% sure that Gusto (formerly ZenPayroll) is the right option for you before you subscribe.

OnPay – Payroll Company

OnpayOnPay is known for its competitive pricing (it costs just $1 per extra employee per month) and its tax accuracy guarantee. The company’s plans start at $40 per month and include complete tax filings for 10 employees.

OnPay is relatively new to the scene (the payroll company was launched in 2011). Nevertheless, the platform was made by a company named Payroll Center, Inc. that has over 30 years of industry experience – so don’t let OnPay’s young age fool you.

Here are some other notable features about OnPay to know about before you use this payroll company for your business:

Pricing

OnPay’s pricing starts at $40 per month and includes 10 employees. Adding additional employees beyond that amount costs just $1 per employee per month. The only time OnPay isn’t the cheapest plan is if your company has fewer than 5 employees, in which case the other options on this list will edge it out by a few bucks. Most businesses, however, will be able to save considerable money by switching to OnPay.

Tax Accuracy Guarantee

The low price tag doesn’t mean OnPay can cheap out on its accuracy guarantee. No matter how much you’re paying the company each month, you’re guaranteed to be protected from tax penalties assessed while using OnPay. Provided you enter information on your end correctly, OnPay will guarantee protection from tax deadline penalties or penalties related to inaccurate payments. This guarantee rarely plays a role, but it’s a good backup plan for businesses that can’t afford costly tax penalties.

Renowned Customer Service

If you’re a weekend warrior who likes to do your business’s bookkeeping on evenings and weekends, then OnPay might be the right choice for you. OnPay’s customer service is open longer than all of its competitors listed here. While Intuit Online Payroll and Gusto’s customer service is open from 9am to 6pm during normal North American business hours on weekdays, OnPay’s is open from 9am to 8pm every day of the week. This might not be a big deal for business owners who like to solve problems themselves, but it can be huge for the weekend warriors out there who aren’t so good with technology.

Mobile Friendly

OnPay, like Gusto, avoids the use of mobile apps for its payroll software. Both companies want to avoid having sensitive customer data on unprotected devices. Nevertheless, OnPay has invested significant effort into making its website mobile-friendly and easy to access. So if you’re accessing payment information on-the-go or on your tablet, then you’ll appreciate Gusto’s easy interface.

Conclusion: Is OnPay the Right Payroll Company for Your Small Business?

OnPay is a feature-rich payroll company that does a good job of completely handling all aspects of your business’s payroll. With extensive mobile functionality and competitive pricing, OnPay is a good fit for businesses across America.

Patriot Payroll Software – Payroll Company

Patriot Software Free TrialPatriot Payroll has surprisingly cheap pricing and full payroll support. It doesn’t have the flashiest interface compared to its competitors, but it makes up for it with extensive functionality.

Some of the key features of Patriot Payroll you need to know before you use this payroll company for your business:

Pricing

Patriot Payroll is priced at $10 per month plus about $2 to $3 per employee per month (the price varies according to how many employees you have). However, this $10 per month plan only provides printable W-2s and free direct deposit and will not file payroll taxes on your behalf. To get that level of support, you’ll need to pay for the Full Service plan, which starts at a reasonable $25 per month.

Add-Ons

Patriot Payroll is one of the few payroll companies that lets you add on HR kits ($4 per month) and employee hour reporting tools ($5 per month). Employees can us the Time & Attendance add-on to easily track their own hours, while the HR tool helps an HR manager keep track of employee demographic data and employment history, among other things.

Conclusion: Is Patriot Payroll Software the Right Payroll Company for Your Business?

Patriot Payroll Software is an inexpensive yet fully-functional payroll software solution that will adequately meet the needs of most businesses – even if the UI isn’t as flashy or mobile-optimized as its competitors.

One comment

  1. I have a small fleet claim processing business with 7 employees. I still use QuickBooks + Enhanced Payroll.

    Based on my experience, it’s very hard to know which software is good until you are well deep into it. A good payroll service should address each of the following.

    Integrated w/ bookkeeping software
    tax tables subscription (Federal & State)
    print checks and stubs
    Print Federal tax forms
    Print State tax forms
    e-file Federal forms
    e-file State forms
    e-pay Federal taxes
    e-pay State taxes (for states that have the option)
    direct deposit option

    Once your efile/epay accounts have been established with the IRS and your State, your payroll software should be able to automate it.

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