Top 5 factors to consider when picking payroll service providers Top 5 factors to consider when picking payroll service providers

If you run one of the nearly 32 million small businesses in the US, you understand how important it is that payroll runs smoothly. Many employees live paycheck-to-paycheck, which means any hiccup in payroll can upend their lives.

Of course, payroll is also an area where it’s easy for a hiccup to occur. For example, the person in charge of payroll comes down with something. The potential for this kind of problem is why many businesses outsource their payroll need. So, how do you go about picking payroll service providers?

Keep reading for five factors to keep in mind when making your choice.

  1. Cost

The cost for payroll providers will vary a bit based on a few main points, such as:

  • Number of employees
  • Pay periods per month
  • State tax requirements

For example, payroll becomes simpler in a state with no income tax requirements which typically means lower costs. Most payroll companies offer packages, which makes comparing provider costs an easier task.

  1. Features

Another area where you should undertake some comparison shopping is with the payroll software features. Does the software include an online portal for you and for the employees? Can you preview the payroll before it submits?

Just as importantly, you should make sure that the payroll provider software can integrate with your time tracking software.

  1. Security

As online services become more and more common in areas like payroll, you should ask a lot of questions about security when dealing with an online payroll provider.

How do they protect employee information? Do they use encryption? What kind of security measures are in place on their online portal?

While a data breach might technically fall on the payroll company in terms of liability, it won’t matter to your employees if their identities get stolen.

Read next: Top Human Resource Technology Trends

  1. Additional Services

When considering your payroll provider options, you should also investigate whether they provide any additional services beyond payroll. While you might only need or want payroll services now, many companies also offer services like accounting and bookkeeping. If you’re curious about the types of additional services available, you can read more here.

  1. Reviews

When it comes to business-to-business services, word of mouth was once the main way you knew whether to move forward or steer clear. These days, though, you can often learn about a business service provider by reading online reviews. It can take a little work to find those reviews, but they are out there online.

Picking Payroll Service Providers for Your Business

When it comes to picking payroll service providers, it takes some balancing between your needs and their service offerings. You want something affordable, but reliable and secure. At the same time, you want some bells and whistles like online portal access for yourself and your employees.

Plus, you also want to consider what services you might want down the road. It can take a little comparison shopping, but you can typically find a provider that ticks all the essential boxes.

Looking for more tips on business tech? Check out some of the posts in our Technology section.

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