5 Must-Have Features You Should Look for in Your Small Business Payroll Software

Nearly 24% of small businesses spend over 120 hours a year dealing with employee federal tax issues. Not including correcting or paying for payroll mistakes, proving it’s a time-consuming process.

The easiest way to streamline the laborious task is by investing in an effective small business payroll software. If you don’t know where to begin, you’ve come to the right place.

Here are five essential features a payroll software must-have.

Benefits of a Payroll Software

Before discussing small business accounting software with payroll, we must cover the benefits of using one. These will convince you to invest in payroll software immediately.

Consider these advantages, for example:


Most business payroll software is inexpensive and lets you scale alongside your business. And many offer monthly, quarterly, and annual plans so it’s cost-efficient. This means you only pay for what you use so there are no surplus charges.

Easy to Use

Payroll systems for small businesses have features, options, or business policies depending on your company’s needs. Using the software means you don’t need an employer toiling over attendance data and there’s less chance of error.

Instead, you can press a button and the team’s entire payroll can be processed. You can also consider a free pay stub template so it’s easier for you.

Relief From Regulatory Aspects

Dealing with business taxes can be a painstaking process especially when you’re handling deductions and filing statutory remittances. If done incorrectly, your business can suffer from financial loss or you may face fines as a penalty.

Luckily, payroll software keeps you updated with the latest laws and changes in taxes which saves you time and money.

Before your search, decide what you need from the service. You should consider:

  • How many employees you have
  • Who will manage the payroll 
  • How much time will be spent on payroll
  • Your budget
  • The biggest pain point in your current payroll process

These answers will lead you to the best payroll option to ensure everything runs smoothly.

The 5 Must-Have Payroll Software Features

We’ve covered the advantages of the payroll software and now we must discuss the essential payroll software features. Before sealing the deal, compare prices with a wide range of providers so you find the best plan for you.

These are the five must-have features, for example:

1. Setup, Training, and Dashboard 

Your first impression about the payroll software is how easy it is to set up. There should be a dashboard to ease you into the process so you know how to do everything from filing taxes to checking attendance data.

A premium payroll software will have videos on basic knowledge like payroll terms, paychecks, and filings so you’re confident. It’s also important that the payroll software integrates with crucial programs like your accounting system to save you time and money.

You must also find a payroll program that integrates with your timecard software so you don’t have to manually enter data each time.

Further, find payroll software that is accessible on computers, mobile phones, or tablets so employees can always log in to their accounts.

2. Direct Deposit 

Companies that don’t have a direct deposit system are outdated and this will leave a bad impression on your team. In fact, 82% of all workers in the U.S choose to receive their compensation through direct debit.

If your company doesn’t support it, employees have to wait for their paycheck at work then cash it in their own time until the bank verifies the funds.

Plus, direct deposits are paperless so you save time, effort, and money. You also no longer have to sign and hand out paper checks which are tricky to co-ordinate if you have several locations.

3. System Notifications 

Find a small business payroll software that has system notifications so you remember to input your data for a specific pay period.

A reputable software will also inform you of any tax law changes especially around the end of the year. Plus, notifications are a useful way to track an employee’s birthday or work anniversary.

For instance, Tom’s fifth work anniversary is coming up so his manager can show Tom their appreciation at the next employee meeting, a fantastic way to boost employee retention.

You must also be able to customize your notifications to choose the reminders you receive and who will receive them. Tom’s upcoming work anniversary is useful to his manager but it won’t be relevant to the marketing department, for example.

4. Employee Self-Service

This feature lets employees access their payroll data so they can see their pay stubs, W-2 forms, and vacation days. Otherwise, employees will have to pester managers or the HR department which will waste time and resources.

If you employ contractors and full-time employees, find payroll software that supports both so you don’t have to switch between two programs.

5. Tax Filings

Taxes are the most complex part of the payroll system. To help you, find payroll software that generates tax forms so payments are on time. Most software providers agree to cover any fines if they mess up.

The software should also give you W-2 forms, the employee’s salary, and further tax information.

These Are the Best Small Business Payroll Software Features

Now you know the best small business payroll software features to consider. 

Find a payroll software program that’s easy-to-use, has training videos, and is optimized for a range of devices. The best payroll systems promote employee self-service, direct deposit, and streamline the tax process to make your life easier. Happy hunting!

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