How Much Does a Payroll Software Cost?

If you’re a growing business – which I'm guessing you are – then you know that a payroll Software is essential for you, and you are here to find out how much is it going to cost you.

But, why is a payroll software so essential for any business nowadays?

  • Saves you time and money

Payroll Processing is time-consuming, but a payroll processing software works very fast. It will not only do it quicker than, say, a third-party payroll company or service but also with fewer mistakes. This means it will save you time. The cost of a payroll processing software is also much less than that of a contract with a third party to handle your payroll.

  • Easy to use

While the process of payroll can be complicated and confusing, using a payroll software is actually quite simple.

  • Always be up-to-date

As a busy business owner or manager, it’s not easy being always up-to-date with the latest updates on taxes and regulations. But with a payroll software, you can rest assured that you will never miss an update again.

  • Fair Employee Management

Many Payroll Software options offer employee management and calendar features and allow managers to track employee hours and handle things such as leaves, absences, and overtime with efficiency.

  • Secure and Private

 Your employee’s data is private, and it should be kept secure. With a payroll software, your employee’s data will be more private than it will ever be with a third party.

Now, let’s get back to talking money.

The important question that any business owner will ask after deciding to go with a payroll software is: How much does it cost?

And this is what we’re in here for.

Okay, first off, let’s agree that the cost of a payroll software depends on 6 variables:

  1. The size of your business
  2. Number Of Employees (how many employees do you want to have access to the software)
  3. The features you want in the software
  4. What country you are from
  5. The provider of the software
  6. The pricing models.

Now, back to pricing.

Before we begin comparing prices, you should know that there are 3 major pricing models:

  1. Free
  2. Per Employee (or user)/Monthly payment
  3. One Time payment

Now, let’s talk about each of the pricing models so you can get a better idea of what it is and, more importantly, how much you will be paying!

1- Free Payroll Software

Free Software

In case you are running on a tight budget, it’s alright, there are still some free and/or open source options that you can find.

However, using a free software means you are sacrificing customer service and some other features, as well as risking the security of your data. Some free software will also have ad space, so there’s that as well.

One more thing, some software may claim to be free, but have “hidden costs”, so you might want to take a closer look at the writing between the lines.

Examples of free software: and Zenefits

Zenefits’ payroll features include:

  • One place

You can manage payroll, HR, benefits, and track employees time from one place

  • Automatic Proration

New employees are added straight to payroll.

  • Automatic Upkeep

Any change you make anywhere in Zenefits is automatically added to payroll

  • Payroll Timeline

You can track all changes made to any employee’s paycheck just pinpointing it.

2- Pay per employee/Per Month

Monthly subscription

This is the most popular price model nowadays, thanks to the services it provides such as could data storage, customer service, and convenience over all.

If you went to this model, you will be paying a monthly fee depending on the number of employees in your business, regardless of how many of those employees use the software.

However, you should also note that there are one-time implementation fees over that.

If you are a large business, you may be glad to know that with most of the payroll software in this model, the cost per employee goes down as the number of employees goes up. This means that the larger your business is, the less you will pay per employee.

How Much? You can expect to pay from $1-$10 per employee per month plus the basic fee that starts from $10 per month.

Because this is the most popular pricing model, let us talk numbers about some of the most popular solutions:

Gusto: Basic $39/month + $5/month per employee.

APS Payroll Solution: Starts from $50/month

Intuit QuickBooks Payroll: Basic $60 month + $5 per employee

Patriot Payroll Software: Basic $10/month + $2/month per employee

Considering this is the most popular payment method, apps using this payment method often have the most features.

Let’s take a look at the payroll features provided by Patriot Software, but bear in mind that these features can also be found on other, similarly priced payroll software options (yes, including those not mentioned in this article):

  • Online Payroll Anywhere, Anytime
  • Accurate payroll calculations
  • Free Payroll Setup
  • Integrated Payroll Add-Ons
  • Customization
  • Free Direct Deposit
  • Time-Off Tracking
  • Free Payroll Portal
  • Full Payroll Service

3- One-time payment

One-time Payment software

This one is common for large businesses find monthly payment per employee unsuitable and has the funds to pay for the software upfront.

In this model, you pay the whole sum upfront based on the features your business needs and the size of your business as well.

Some of the providers in this model will also charge an annual fee for exchange for customer support all year long, but this is often optional, and you can opt to not go for it.

The price here differs. If you are a small or medium-size business, you can expect to pay $500-$1000. But large enterprises pay higher fees than that, it can be $100,000.

Some examples:

Optimum Payroll (doesn’t release their pricing publicly, you must call them for a quota)

Staff Files – Click on the link to check their prices

Optimum Payroll (doesn’t release their pricing publicly, you must call them for a quote)

Staff Files – Click on the link to check their prices

Some of the Optimum HRIS Features:

  • Tax Form printing
  • Accounting Integration
  • Vacation and leave tracking
  • Direct deposit – including optional prenote
  • Year to date tracking
  • Payroll Tax management
  • Employee benefits management
  • Secure Data Management
  • Unlimited Employee Records
  • Employee Self Service Integration
  • Employee Attendance Management
  • Applicant Tracking Integration
  • Wage Garnishment
  • Secure Wellness Tracking
  • W-2 Preparation
  • Reporting (ACA, COBRA, OSHA, etc)

In a nutshell

So, let’s see what you are going to do:

  1. Decide what features you need of the software
  2. Decide what pricing model you prefer
  3. Do a detailed comparison between the providers in this model according to your needs and budget

At the end of the day, it’s you that can decide what’s best for your business. We hope this article has provided some help.

If it did, or if you found this article helpful, share it with friends. If you have any questions, feel free to leave them below and we will get back to you as soon as possible with the answers.

Also, if you feel we’ve missed out on something, leave a comment below.

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