Payroll Software: What to Consider Before Your Search

If you are searching for new payroll software, you are either just starting up, or you have outgrown your previous system. Either way, there are certain problems you must solve with your payroll software! Before you begin conducting your search and calling vendors, take the time to consider these four important points. They will leave you better prepared for your search.


Maybe you need to keep track of employee garnishments in a certain way, or you want to use direct deposit rather than issuing paper checks. No matter what your needs, be sure to write them all down on paper so you don’t forget them during your search! Use this check list to organize your thoughts.


Several things can affect the scale of payroll software that will fit for you. If your budget is $2,000, then that’s where your search efforts should be focused. Having said that, you might find that your needs exceed your budget. Things that can affect the cost of your payroll software are the number of users, employees, and companies managed. Some of the features that typically affect cost are: direct deposit, tax filing method, multiple state tax filing, custom payroll setup, and more. Therefore start with a budget in mind, but understand that your needs may require you to adjust the budget accordingly.


Do you have the computers and/or networking capabilities necessary to run your payroll in-house? This is the major question you need to answer to help you decide whether to use in-house payroll software or software as a service. Some people like the control of having the whole system in-house, while others do not want the cost or responsibility of purchasing and maintaining hardware. If you are one who doesn’t want to deal with the hardware, then software as a service is probably the right direction to go. On the other hand, if you have the staff and hardware available, and you desire more control, then go down the road toward the payroll software option. Both in-house payroll and software as a service are extremely popular; it just depends on the needs of your business.

Future needs.

The reason many people switch software is that their payroll needs outgrow their software. They need to manage payroll for more employees, or need more flexible pay entry, etc. The list of reasons all depends on that company’s needs. You can prolong the life of your payroll software by projecting your needs for the next seven years or so. Ask yourself, will you expand to paying employees in other states? Will you add another business location? Will you want to offer employees debit cards or direct deposit for their pay? These are all things that should be considered, and then you should choose the payroll software accordingly.

Being prepared for your payroll software search can help ensure you get a payroll system that fits well and can grow with your company for years to come.

Payroll Company

Are you looking for a payroll company to help you process payroll? This short article will help you understand the different payroll company types, and will also tell you how to find them more quickly than just browsing around the internet.

So, what kind of payroll company is right for you? There are two main types:

  • Payroll Software Company

    This company develops payroll software which is purchased and installed on your computers. Some payroll software companies sell at retail stores, and some sell through partners or accountants. The software can be installed on one or more computers and all of the payroll data is then housed internally. The benefit of using software from a payroll software company is you have more control of the process. Depending on the size of your business and the depth of your payroll needs, it might also be more economical.

  • Payroll Service Company

    A payroll service company provides the service of processing payroll for you, and can also take care of the payroll tax filing. You will still need to input such things as hours worked and maintain employee information. Instead of purchasing and installing software, the software is typically accessed online. Accessing the software online does save you from having to maintain the software with updates. The benefit of using a payroll service is the burden of tax filing is on their shoulders instead of your own.

It is nearly impossible to do a thorough job of researching to find a payroll company by merely searching online for ‘payroll company’. You won’t find a comprehensive list of payroll companies on the first page of Google. You need a better way to find the best payroll company. There are a few good directories available, and here are a couple of them.

  • allows you to choose in detail, which payroll features you will need. Look within the accounting software category, as this is where payroll is typically found.
  • also allows you to choose the details of the type of system you are looking for by choosing necessary features.

Both of the above Web sites also offer the possibility of calling them to speak with a consultant, tell them what you are looking for, and then receive calls from the vendors that fit for your search. This is free for you as a software purchaser.

Accounting and Payroll Software – Five Signs it’s Time to Switch (Even when You Don’t Think You Need to)

Has anyone ever tried to sell you something you were completely uninterested in purchasing? You know, the long and drawn out sales pitch with the salesperson talking non-stop about features, not even stopping to take a breath for fear you will say, “NO.”

It’s times like this when we appreciate our ability to be assertive and walk away. This situation can happen just about anywhere from the car dealership to the perfume counter, or to a work situation. The simple resounding answer to give these tenacious sales people is “NO.” Purchasing software for your company is no different! If you are currently satisfied with the accounting or payroll software for your business, it’s probably a good idea to stay with what you have. After all, switching software involves a learning curve, and your company will need to take the time to adjust.

While the above is true most of the time, there are certain times when a business person believes they don’t need to move to a different software application, yet for the good of their business, they absolutely should. Here are the main reasons a company should consider a software move, even when they don’t think they need to.

  1. You are still using a DOS based product. There were many excellent DOS products available in the 1980’s. In fact some of them still work well to this day. This leads some people to believe they can keep using the program(s) to run their business indefinitely. If you are using a program that was created in the 1980’s, the upside is that the company you bought it from must be pretty good to have kept it working that long. If you drive a car from the 1980’s you have surely had a lot of work done just to keep the thing running. Nothing can last forever. When it comes to software, DOS based software is a thing of the past and you need to move forward as soon as possible, or at least develop a plan to do so. Operating systems are moving forward and Microsoft has released Vista, with talk of the next system around the bend. Your DOS system probably won’t work on either one. So if any of the computers in your operation crash, you will need to purchase a new one. Where will you be when there aren’t computers available to run your DOS program? Develop a plan now, and you won’t have to panic later.
  2. Your software product is no longer being supported. If your product is no longer supported, you will not be able to get your questions answered and will be left to handle questions and problems on your own. Updating to something newer will allow you to ask questions and get help when you need it.
  3. You are spending more time ‘tricking’ your system than simply working with it. This is the kind of thing you don’t realize you are doing until after you change software. Set aside one whole week where you consciously keep track of how much time you or your staff spends manipulating your software to handle the way you need to enter or analyze your data. Are things such as invoice entry or inventory tracking taking you three to four steps when they should really only take one or two? If so, you and your staff could save significant time by moving to a system that can handle your needs.
  4. You have a hard time finding hardware that will work. Simply put, you should be able to find hardware such as computers, printers, and other devices for your business without much hassle. If you have to search from store to store or on eBay to find a device that will work with your old software system, it’s time to upgrade your software.
  5. You stay with your accounting software and/or payroll software because you are afraid. Don’t feel bad. There are many business people who simply stay with the software they have even while they know full well they really should move to something different. They know that their security would be better, their processing would run more smoothly, and that they would save themselves and their staff valuable time by moving to newer software. Feeling bad won’t help, but developing a plan to move forward will. Even if you can’t make the switch now, planning it out ahead of time will reduce the worry and stress you are feeling right now.

Payroll Time Clock Software - How it can Benefit Your Business

Are you wondering whether employees are really there when they say they are? Does your payroll staff spend time re-entering hours instead of pulling them in electronically? If so, then your company may be ready to implement a time clock, and integrate it directly to your payroll software. There are several distinct benefits your company can enjoy by doing this.

Eliminate double entry.

With the implementation of a time clock, hours worked are entered directly into the time clock by the employee, eliminating the need for hand-written time cards. This can eliminate the confusion of unclear or inaccurate handwriting. When it comes time to process payroll, the time worked is pulled in electronically from the time clock, eliminating the need for somebody to re-enter hours. This not only saves a significant amount of manual work, but also ensures better accuracy.

More accurate tracking of hours worked.

Do you wonder whether employees are actually working the hours they recorded by hand? This worry can be drastically reduced or eliminated with the implementation of a time clock. There are various methods provided by time clocks to ensure the employees are actually recording their own hours and not ‘buddy punching’, a term which refers to people punching in and out for each other. There is a wide variety of clocks providing different methods of verifying time worked, such as the biometric clock, which verifies employee identity based on their actual fingerprint.

Smoother processes.

Integrating your time clock with your payroll software makes your whole payroll process faster and simpler. After all, if you have to re-enter data from the time clock into your payroll software system, you are losing out on a great deal of the benefits you were meant to have. Be sure the time clock you choose will work together with your software application; this will guarantee much faster and simpler payroll processing for all involved.

By implementing a time clock, your business can gain more accurate pay information and streamline payroll processes. Make the most of your time clock with a direct interface to your payroll software, and you’ll be on your way to a much simpler and smoother payroll processing system.

Payroll Software Programs

Payroll software programs are extremely useful tools that can help your business stay compliant with payroll taxes, manage employee information, process payroll, and of course pay employees on time and accurately. Without it, you are left to manage very important and very private information using scattered spreadsheets or keeping track of it on paper.

Are you looking for payroll software programs to help you find the right one for your organization? These days we typically take to the internet as a first research step. But there are only ten results on the first results page when you search, and there are far more payroll software programs out there that could be a better fit for your business. It would be really hard to sift through pages and pages of Google search results, and in between the information you are really seeking, you will find a lot of sites that don’t even sell payroll software. Use these tips to help you narrow down your search.

CPA (Previously CPA Technology Advisor)

This is a great starting point for finding a payroll software program. Each year, this publication reviews professional payroll systems in detail for five different categories, and then assigns a star rating for each category. An average star rating is assigned for each payroll program and a summary is also given. To access these reviews, visit and type ‘payroll software reviews’ in the search box.

This Web site is dedicated to helping businesses find software and offers free tools to sort and find systems by entering your needs. You also have the option of speaking with a software expert and having vendors contact you, at no cost to you. Here is a link to see available payroll software programs.

This site, which is mainly dedicated to the search for accounting software, also includes a comprehensive listing of payroll software programs. You can browse through available programs or use their matching service, where you speak with a software expert and get matched up with appropriate vendors. They know which questions to ask, you will receive relevant results. Here is a link to view the payroll software programs.