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Payroll Providers?

Al Gil's Profile

As a new controller for a smallish company, I also wear the HR and payroll hats. The CEO has agreed to outsource our payroll processing and I would love to get this changes over asap (by month end) I have been looking at various companies and not having any real world experience with them, was hoping my colleagues here could provide some feedback. Primarily looking at Paychex, Gusto and Intuit. We have office in Virginia and in Texas, offer full benefits, and mostly salaried workers. Dont really need a time keeping system etc.

Any suggestions or recommendations? We want to make a decisions in the next week or so!

Allegra Helms, CPA
Controller

Answers

Randy Moore
Title: CFO
Company: SJB Bagel Makers
(CFO, SJB Bagel Makers) |

I don't know anything about Gusto for payroll. I know a little about Intuit payroll and find it kind of lightweight. You would be better off in the long run to find a service that provides more than just paychecks and tax reporting. You may not need the full HR components available but some added bells and whistles will make life easier - you will need to decide what those are for you and your firm.

At all my stops in my career, I end up reviewing payroll services and without exception I end up with Paychex. They offer good value and a wide range of services and they stand behind them. I have used ADP, Ceridian, and the other usual suspects. Currently the best added service we use from them is tracking the necessary numbers needed for ACA reporting. While this may go away soon, it sure has stopped us from reinventing the wheel.

As a new controller I would not jump into it to quickly but take your time and figure out exactly what is needed for your situation.

Al Gil
Title: NA
Company: not applicable
(NA, not applicable) |

We've been looking since I came on board a month or so ago. It's a long story but we need to change asap from our current in house/outsource combo.

I've also been looking at Payficiency but have not been able to find much in the way of reviews that don't originate from them.

Mark Fuller
Title: Controller
Company: New Ocean Health
(Controller, New Ocean Health) |

I am in the same position - Controller also acting as HR, payroll, and first-line legal. We opted for ADP. We are in PA with employees in PA, NJ, DE, VA. We went with the full tax service because PA has income taxes down to the municipality. A nightmare for sure. The Resource platform includes access to an HR professional, who will visit and go over anything you need. I have had to call to get advice for various awkward HR situations. There is an employee handbook wizard, but there are also people to review and finalize your employee handbook. They also do job descriptions. These may seem menial, but the results are all compliant with federal and state regulations. I'm not sure what Paychex offers in addition to the payroll processing. We chose ADP and have grown from simple (RUN platform) to their Resource platform.
I know this will be a different discussion, but we may have to move off Quickbooks onto the next level of accounting package. Any suggestions?

Topic Expert
Wayne Spivak
Title: President & CFO
Company: SBAConsulting.com
LinkedIn Profile
(President & CFO, SBAConsulting.com) |

The last firm I was associated with had an HR director who picked ADP. I asked for a year end summary of payroll. It took two weeks because it wasn't a "standard" report.

Really?

The client before where I was the CFO used Paychecks. The number of people you had to speak to, to get an authoritative answer was mind-boggling.

My suggestion is use a local or regional provider. You'll probably end up with better service. Ask your CPA firm.

Al Gil
Title: NA
Company: not applicable
(NA, not applicable) |

We've just gone through a very long painful struggle to implement a custom SAP system that still isn't 100%. This was done through a small/local provider. We're a bit gun shy from that.

We dont have a CPA firm. That's also on my list even though I am a CPA. I know enough to know what I don't know.

Al Gil
Title: NA
Company: not applicable
(NA, not applicable) |

We've just gone through a very long painful struggle to implement a custom SAP system that still isn't 100%. I would suggest that rather than going with a custom solution from a small provider, you work with a company that has resources, experience and happy prior clients.

Topic Expert
Wayne Spivak
Title: President & CFO
Company: SBAConsulting.com
LinkedIn Profile
(President & CFO, SBAConsulting.com) |

Unfortunately, that is usually the case with SAP, and it isn't call sap for nothing... like sapping your energy, life blood, and bank accounts. :)

If you don't have a firm, contact the local CFO/CPA groups. AMA, State Society, FEI, FENG, etc. I'm sure you can get some good recommendations.

Len Green
Title: Performance Improvement Consultant and E..
Company: Haygarth Consulting LLC
LinkedIn Profile
(Performance Improvement Consultant and ERP Strategist, Haygarth Consulting LLC) |

Hi Allegra
It's not clear from your post if your company has documented (i.e. really knows) what it needs. So I would counsel you to replace urge for speed with the need to define your key requirements. Then evaluate options

You state your ERP is SAP (which product?). Do you need any HR-PR integration with SAP or are you ok with simple export-import of data (e.g. Payroll JE)? In future are you likely to have employees report billable time for clients? How would SAP or your new HR-PR system handle that? Do you need integration with benefits providers (e.g. how do people enroll for benefits?)?

Are you looking at cloud or on-prem? Any preference? How do you need employees to report PTO, billable time, etc?

You posted this question June 13-how practical is it to complete your list of key requirements, schedule vendor demos and evaluate them, review issues, obtain estimates, and make a sound decision within a week or 2?

As far as payroll solutions are concerned, maybe add Paylocity to your potential vendor list. I can provide you with a contact there.

If you have any more detailed questions, feel free to reach out to me. I help people choose and use software.

Al Gil
Title: NA
Company: not applicable
(NA, not applicable) |

Hi Len!
I have actually been reviewing payroll providers since March (I started part time back then). Our original plan had been to change at year end but some other issues came up that made changing sooner desirable.

Our ERP is a custom SAP product built from the ground up. We don't currently need any HR integration and our ERP handles project costing including billable time. Integration with benefit providers would be nice but not mission critical. Prefer cloud system so it can be managed from anywhere. Employees use our ERP system for time/PTO etc.

I had narrowed it down to the ones I listed and was trying to get some real world feedback before we made a final decision in order to be able to transition for the next quarter.

Topic Expert
Bob Stenz
Title: Controller
Company: Silicon Valley start-up
(Controller, Silicon Valley start-up) |

As a career controller (...someday I hope to make CFO), I'll suggest a PEO (say Insperity, Trinet, or ADP TotalSource). Using a PEO will save you lots of administrative hassles with benefits and other HR matters and allow you to focus on critical areas knowing that you have HR backstopped with experienced hands.

Topic Expert
Wayne Spivak
Title: President & CFO
Company: SBAConsulting.com
LinkedIn Profile
(President & CFO, SBAConsulting.com) |

Welcome back Bob!

Wayne

Steve Banks
Title: Director of Operations
Company: O'More College of Design
LinkedIn Profile
(Director of Operations, O'More College of Design) |

We just switched over to ADP. I would like to use a PEO at somepoint, but unless you have a real need for virtual PT assistant, the price point for ADP Totalsource is to high (imo). But with multiple states go with one of those big guys - ADP, Paychex, Paycor - Intuit? well you get what you pay for and if you have to babysit it then it is not much good.

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