Small Business

Small Business Payroll: Do it yourself?

Updated on November 29, 2019


When it comes to managing a small to medium sized business’s payroll obligations, most business owners have trouble knowing where to start. There may be various types of issues to worry about, whether it is overtime hours, tax issues, medical overage, bonuses, raises and beyond. Some choose to tackle the problem themselves but yearn for better results. Others lean on the expertise of payroll service professionals or even use online payroll services. Let’s take a look at the challenges posed by small business payrolls to help you determine the best way to manage your business’s payroll responsibilities.

Small business payroll: online payroll

The introduction of cloud platforms has allowed for a convenient and well organized online payroll service. Online payroll specialists can now help businesses manage and conduct payroll regardless of location. They can even file all of the necessary reports with various state, local and federal wings of government. Online payroll services are now capable of processing new hires. Certain online payroll services also offer tools for managing flexible spending accounts, health insurance plans, retirement services, paid time off etc.

Small business payroll: payroll software

If you haven’t yet allied with an online payroll service provider, consider using payroll software. Some may even offer a free trial period. There are also business payroll software services that integrate with online functions for even more customization and helpful features. Most payroll software is priced through a base rate per month along with an extra cost for each employee who uses the software. However, it must be noted that some payroll software programs will not transmit forms directly to the IRS. This is one of the negatives of relying on such software programs.

Small business payroll: DIY Payroll

If your small business has few employees and you are adamant that doing the work yourself will save time and money, you may want to adopt the DIY approach. However, this do it yourself style is typically only appropriate for the smallest of businesses. If you want to do a truly bare bones payroll, this approach does not involve the use of any software program or other form of electronic assistance. Keep in mind that performing a weekly or bi-weekly payroll is a time consuming process. If you are bad with numbers or data entry, it may be worth considering outsourcing the work to specialists. On the contrary, if you love numbers and filling out spreadsheet cells, you might actually look forward to running a weekly payroll. Aside from the time commitment, the primary drawback to the DIY method is the increased likelihood for errors.

Small business payroll: Outsourcing to a Traditional Payroll Service Provider

Paying a conventional payroll processor may also be an excellent option. Cutting checks, recording hours worked, adjusting pay rates and other details are the types of duties that the average business owner or manager would prefer to delegate to others. An accountant will also make payroll and payroll tax filing responsibilities that much easier. By outsourcing all of your payroll needs to those who specialize in this niche, you can free up your time to focus on more pressing issues that require your unique experience and skill set.

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