Growing a business, cementing relationships with loyal clients, meeting the demands of your employees, and paying them for their contributions are huge milestones. However, making timely staff payments can be challenging.
The payroll software market has grown, with each HCM and ERP software boasting capabilities superior to its competitors. Here are 16 essential tips to help you pick the payroll software that best suits your needs.
Consider the Cost
You’ll want to consider the price when deciding whether or not a software is right for you. You may also want to look at how much similar programs cost and make a comparison.
Inquire about the pricing structure, such as if it is a flat monthly rate or proportional to the number of users added to the system. You should also be aware that the payroll software’s price will fluctuate depending on the size and needs of your company.
Before installing any software, you must determine exactly what features you need. Although all processing software automates payroll, each has its unique functionalities. Factors such as premium deductions and bonus pay will impact your payroll calculation.
Ensure that the payroll system you’re considering can record how many hours every staff member works. Besides facilitating deductions, your payroll software should have the following functionalities:
- Maintaining records.
- Organizing tasks.
Integration With Existing Procedures
It’s crucial to consider your company’s existing system when choosing a specific software. Even if you hire a third party to handle payroll processing, selecting payroll software that aligns with your operational procedures is essential.
You may already be utilizing various software, including accounting and vetting services. Selecting a payroll software service that works effectively with such systems will help you save time and effort in monitoring and administering them.
Consider Previous User Experiences
If you’re running a new business, it’s advisable to use payroll software with good ratings from most of its previous customers. Choose an HCM and ERP software that’s easy to operate instead of a complex one.
It’s unlikely you’ll get your money’s worth out of the software if your staff isn’t happy using it. You can ask for reviews from businesses that have used similar software.
Tax Withholding and Reporting
Tax withholding is among the most burdensome aspects of payroll processing. Depending on your selected method, some people can submit their taxes quarterly to the relevant local, state, and federal agencies.
Some may submit documents such as W-9 and 1099 for contractors and W-2 for ex-staff to the Internal Revenue Service (IRS). In cases where the payroll service guarantees that their tax services are error-free, the client is not accountable for any penalties assessed by the taxing authorities.
Determine if the Software Is Cloud-Based
Some businesses need to operate around the clock, without limits or boundaries. Using a cloud-based payroll solution renders it simple for the manager to authorize fundamental requests remotely.
It also allows workers to verify their job status and make necessary adjustments. Furthermore, having a central hub from which to manage all operations reduces complexity for everyone.
Besides providing accessibility from any location, cloud solutions usually offer a monthly payment option, permitting you to stretch out the software’s expense and avoid a hefty up-front investment.
Access to Customer Support
Consider if you need guidance to switch from managing payroll with a spreadsheet to the software or if you can navigate the basics independently.
The extent to which you can access customer support varies from one service provider to another. Whereas some services will assign a single point of contact to your account, others will make their entire staff available to you. Think about your requirements before making a final decision.
Think About Confidentiality
Payroll services, such as staff wages and performance reports, entail much private information. You should carefully consider the security features offered by any payroll software you want to purchase. It’s advisable to look for one that offers multi-level encryption.
Preferably, the solution should allow you to precisely define all departments’ responsibilities, preventing access to sensitive information by those who shouldn’t have it.
It would be best to control access and user roles so that you can invite people from different departments to collaborate with you, allocate multiple responsibilities, and set permissions for every unit.
You’ll have complete command over all personally identifiable information while being able to communicate across many departments seamlessly.
Your human resource team will appreciate payroll software with audit trail reports to track down and probe any unauthorized modifications to workers’ data.
Compliance With the Law
Besides the typical payroll regulations, check if there are any extra laws that the business you’ll be processing payroll must follow. If so, consider choosing software that complies with the applicable laws.
Maintaining your company’s legitimacy relies on your compliance with applicable statutes. It would help if you used a solution that instantly calculates things like provident fund (PF) and income tax for your staff.
The program should let you tweak the PF settings to your liking, create organized reports for easy tax reporting, and adjust to new guidelines efficiently.
Adjustable Salary Parameters
Your workforce may be a mixture of seasoned professionals and newly hired interns. You’ll have an easier time managing payroll, team budgets, and staff expenditures if you can accommodate the various compensation arrangements within your firm.
The solution you choose should allow you to tailor salaries to a wide range of roles and responsibilities. For instance, your field sales staff might require a higher reimbursement cap for gas than your office-based marketers do. Furthermore, it should permit you to save those configurations as blueprints and apply them to new hires in the future.
Electronic Salary Transfers
Consider payroll services that have established relationships with major direct-deposit banks. That permits you to deposit paychecks directly into workers’ bank accounts without leaving the payroll software.
You may also choose software that allows you to send your workers payments by gathering and entering their bank details during recruitment and selection.
An efficient software allows for a rapid salary transfer via pre-populated bank information during payday. These alternatives are dependable and assure your staff that they’ll receive their paychecks on time.
Staff Self-Service Portal
The payroll department operates on a strict timetable and stringent deadlines. The solution you choose should include a self-service interface for workers. Having workers electronically submit documentation for tax returns and reimbursements is convenient.
Furthermore, you’ll reduce the likelihood of mismatching worker records. You can establish due dates and send automatic reminders to ensure the workers submit the documents on time. It becomes easier to verify the entries online, allowing bills for reimbursement to sort themselves into appropriate categories.
Processing payroll requires a series of inputs, most of which you obtain from different places. Since it’s the standard data storage method in many firms, finding software that can process spreadsheet input is essential.
Avoid the time-consuming process of manually generating worker entries by importing big data sets using the import function. The software should permit you to upload bulk workers’ entries. You’ll have quick access to data such as worker profiles, bank accounts, and work histories.
Full and Final Settlements
Any decision to dismiss a worker is tough. Nevertheless, the procedure should be smooth once you’ve made a decision.
Ensure the software you’re considering buying permits you to account for workers gratuities, bonuses, commissions, and uncashed leave. It should also have an alternative to send payslips or reminders to an employee-specified email address.
Number of Workers
Before choosing the specific payroll software, it’s crucial to determine the number of workers the payroll system will need to accommodate. Consider seasonality and any staffing changes that may arise when calculating this number.
Incorporate new hires and departing employees because if anyone departs, their information must stay on your payroll software throughout the year for use in year-end reports. Remember that most service providers will charge according to workforce size.
Ask if There Is a Trial Period
Trying out a payroll package before purchasing it is a great way to ensure it meets your needs. Most payroll software providers now offer free demos or trial periods, so you may try the software before committing to purchase it.
It would be better if the company allowed a free trial subscription without collecting your payment information. If you think the software is ideal for your business but needs specific customizations, you can send the seller feedback.
Investing in payroll software is your company’s vital financial and operational decision. However, it’s easy to be carried away by the hype of HCM and ERP solutions available in the market. You should learn your firm’s requirements before purchasing the appropriate payroll system.
Select a payroll software that prioritizes users’ needs in terms of ease of use, accessibility, customer service, and data security. With the right software in place, you can lay the foundation for a successful firm that will thrive in the foreseeable future.