7 key features that your payroll software must have

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Written By Charlotte Miller

In order to keep your business running smoothly, you need the right payroll software to take care of calculating and delivering salary payments to your employees. To ensure you have found the best possible solution, however, it’s important to consider all of the features that you need from your payroll software so that it can handle all aspects of your company’s payment process. Payroll software that does not include these seven key features will cause more problems than they solve, and may even put your company in legal trouble. Read on to learn about each feature and how it benefits your business.

1) Automation

While it’s not impossible to handle payroll manually, no one can claim it’s ideal. The whole point of automating timekeeping is to streamline and simplify so you can spend more time on other critical business issues. Automation becomes especially important when dealing with large, multi-location organizations because it gives you better visibility across all locations—from tax reporting to billing. If you do everything manually, chances are good there will be inconsistencies among employees or between your company and government agencies. A strong automated system also allows for customized rules based on individual needs, such as capping deductions for certain items or providing manual override options during periods of high risk.

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2) Accuracy

The most important quality of payroll software is its accuracy. If it’s not, you’re going to lose money either through underpaying employees or overpaying taxes. To ensure your technology is accurate, ask yourself whether it can support multi-state companies and a variety of business structures, including corporations and LLCs. It should also support a range of plans, from standard hourly work to salaried positions with bonuses and commissions. In addition, find out if vendors offer tax filing assistance for those who use their services–most do now. Finally, if you operate in multiple states or collect information from contractors as well as employees, make sure it has an optional cloud-based storage system so you don’t run into issues with HIPAA compliance or state data-storage regulations.

3) Safety

An online payroll system offers round-the-clock access for employees to view their earnings and payslips, eliminating the need for excessive physical paperwork, which poses risks of being lost or stolen. This digital approach creates a paperless employee environment, enhancing organizational efficiency and security. Online systems are designed to ensure complete data protection, safeguarding employees’ personal information. Additionally, an online system simplifies annual tasks like collecting W-2 forms from employees. By shifting away from paper checks, the system streamlines payroll, resulting in significant long-term savings in human resources costs.

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4) Workflow Integration

Time tracking is easy to forget about, but it’s an important part of calculating employee hours and accurate paychecks. You want to make sure employees are tracking their time on payroll; if they don’t, you can set alerts for them or even fire them (just kidding!). Workflow integration with tools like Slack can help you check in on how employees are spending their time.

5) Reporting

If you want a clear picture of how much money you’re making and how employees are being paid, a reporting function is a valuable tool. This feature allows you to generate reports on what’s going on with your employees. For example, if an employee is being paid incorrectly or not at all, you can quickly determine why and fix it without delay. In addition to correcting problems, reporting can also help you track finances over time.

6) Security

A good payroll system needs to provide enough security to protect its users against hackers, both external and internal. They should also ensure that employee data is well protected from unauthorized access. The system you choose should have multiple layers of security, especially since it will be dealing with sensitive information about employees’ personal details, salaries, tax deductions etc. It’s important to find a tool that not only protects your information but also provides for regular network monitoring so as to keep all financial data secure at all times.

7) Mobile Accessibility

Nothing is more frustrating than trying to manage employee time, attendance, and other important tasks when you don’t have access to your information. For many businesses, access to their information has become even more crucial in recent years with expanded coverage of major holidays. Mobile accessibility means you can take care of everything at any time while on the go! Take it from us, having payroll software without mobile capabilities is like driving down an open highway without gas in your car—it just won’t get you very far. If yours doesn’t offer mobile accessibility or any other feature on our list, it might be time for an upgrade!

Payroll is one of those accounting-related tasks that aren’t fun at all. The slightest mistake can cause a lot of problems. If you want to prevent them from happening, use a top-quality program. In order to choose one, it is important to be aware of its characteristics and functions.