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How to Choose the Right Payroll Software

Jerika Holton
Aug 18, 2022
5 min

Labor is an organization’s largest expense, so it is important that your payroll is both accurate and submitted in a timely manner. Calculating such a large expense can be difficult to do manually. One of the most time-consuming tasks is manually doing the calculations for state, federal, and even local payroll taxes and having to maintain compliance throughout the calculations.  

Choosing a provider to take on your organization’s largest expense, payroll, can seem scary, but it does not have to be. You want to feel informed and empowered to make the best business decision, so here are some steps to help guide you to feel confident to make your decision:

Evaluate your business needs.  

Before searching for the best payroll software for your organization, it is important to understand the exact opportunities you are looking to solve. Having this foundation will help guide you to make the best decision for your business when choosing a payroll software provider.

  • Consider the size of your organization, for example, smaller organizations may not have a need for payroll software yet. The more you continue to grow and scale, the increases the need to ensure accuracy and timely payroll processing. Your company headcount may also show how much configuration you need from your payroll provider.
  • Setting a budget can help you to narrow down your options of payroll providers, It is important to see a return on investments with your payroll software, you want to choose payroll software that covers your needs but also maximizes your return.
  • Payroll compliance can be difficult to maintain doing payroll manually, especially if you have unique payroll tax needs. For example, if you have employees across different states then payroll taxes may be different depending on what state or city your employee lives in. You want to understand your unique payroll tax needs that are time-consuming, this can help you to find a solution that takes a task that is a normally daunting task, and make it easy.  
  • Understand your employees’ needs, the pandemic has changed the workforce in many ways. Employees are looking for more from their employers, and your payroll software can help in retaining employees. Your employees may be seeking a company that provides earned wage access to feel comfortable in the current economic state, or maybe your employees are looking for a company that has performance management software so they can professionally develop. No matter what your employees need, payroll software can benefit not only the employer but the employee as well.

Do your research.  

There are many payroll software providers that have a long history in the industry, and as the need for cloud-based software increases, there are software providers that have entered the market. Although product offerings may seem the same across platforms, there are key differences that set providers apart.  

  • Understand what key industries a payroll provider may specialize in or at least has experience in servicing the industry. Every industry has unique needs, you want to ensure your payroll provider can maintain compliance in your industry and that the software is configurable to fit your needs.  
  • Understand what company size the provider has success supporting. If you are a small-sized organization, you may not want payroll software that is used by large-sized businesses, they may have extra features you do not need or may not be a cost-effective solution.
  • Understanding organizations of similar size or industry’s experience with a payroll provider can help you navigate who is best suited to tend to your business needs. Customer reviews can give you a feel for how the payroll software performs. Reviews provide feedback from real people who have real experience using the software to help support their business needs.
  • Compare package offerings. Once you understand your business needs you will understand what features you need most for your budget. With so many different options for payroll software packages, add-on features, and stand-alone options, pricing can get very tricky.
  • Be sure the software you choose can integrate with any existing products you already have, or you are looking to use for your business. Work with your IT team to ensure the software you choose is compatible with your business.

Choose a Payroll Provider

Once you have defined your business needs and you have done your research, you can feel confident that you are armed with the right information to make the best decision for your business. If you are unsure about making the final leap, it is ok to ask for more information. Asking questions regarding product demos, free trials, and money-back guarantees can help you ease your worries. Just remember there is no one-size-fits-all solution for payroll, but you can pick a solution that is best tailored to fit your individual needs.  

If you want to learn more about how Greenshades can support your payroll and HR contact us.

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