Processing payroll can be time consuming, and paying for an enterprise solution can be prohibitively costly for small business enterprises. Cutting costs and overhead is important, but not at the expense of workflow. If small businesses sacrifice product in order to achieve a bottom line, they’ll be left with neither. Hard choices are a necessity in a down economy. Online payroll solutions that combine flexibility, low overhead and an intuitive interface can help you meet your payroll needs without struggling.
Payroll Software Functions
What can you expect from an online payroll provider? The exact features vary by service provider, but you can look for automated payroll calculations, employee tax amounts, an easy way to allocate employee funds to employee savings accounts, project cost reporting, job cost reporting, withholding calculations, direct deposits, automated check writing and end-of-year tax forms, including W-2s and 1099s. Some payroll systems allow employees to log on and view sick time, personal time, vacation days, unpaid leave and other payroll-related benefits services.
These basic functions give small business providers everything they need to calculate employee benefits, employee tax information, project reporting information and tax and other financial data. Calculate salary rates, adjust for employee raises or calculations, make payments online and ensure that you’re meeting federal tax compliance standards with a few clicks.
Advantages of Going Online
Switching to an online payroll system can save you time and money, as well as help you avoid fines for late invoices, past due payments, and other fines. When you switch to an online system, you streamline all of your regular expenses, legal and regulatory responsibilities in one system. Set reminders for payments or configure automatic payments, and then devote less time on a day-to-day basis to business accounting. Automating payroll procedures gives you more time to devote to other tasks. You can track payments in the online interface so you know when money is going out.
The cost of small business payroll solutions varies by exact service. Even if a system has a high cost initially, it’s a one-time expense that more than pays for itself over time. Small businesses may not have the budget to hire a CPA or an accountant, but an online payroll system gives anyone the means to perform complicated accounting tasks with a few simple clicks. You don’t have to be a bookkeeper to do this. Because the system automates procedures, there’s less of a chance for you to make errors in tax processing, payments or other processes. This also translates to time savings because you’ll do things right the first time.
Choosing a System
The online payroll market is crowded, so you’ll have lots of choice when considering a small business payroll product. It is wise to consider whether the online payroll product integrates with any other accounting software you use in your business, as well as the help and support options. Look for a payroll system that gives you telephone, chat, or email help at hours that are convenient for you.
Price is also a factor, of course. Examine what options are available at different price points, and think about what core features you need. Be realistic about your current needs, as well as direction of growth. If you don’t need a feature today but anticipate using it within six months, purchase more than you need in order to have the ability to expand in the future. Look over a product’s website to see what customer support is available and whether a system has user reviews or testimonials from satisfied clients.
Automating payroll services can give you the peace of mind you need to know that payments for goods and services as well as tax payments are taken care of, leaving you the time you need to concentrate on running your company and doing what you love. Online payroll systems come with different packaging options, making them affordable accounting solutions for all different types of small businesses.