As a small business owner, what holds you up most at work?
If meeting your payroll needs on time has become an issue for you, what do you plan to do about it going into the New Year?
Payroll is one of if not the most important issues a small business owner must deal when employing others. Whether they are full-time, part-time or freelance employees, it is a no-brainer that workers want to get paid and paid on time at that.
So, if you are finding payroll to be an issue for your small business, is outsourcing it the right call to make?
When you find the right payroll provider, you can take the time and effort that you or one of your employees were doing to meet payroll and direct it elsewhere. Finding that right provider, however, can take some doing.
Among the things to look for in a payroll provider are:
Dependability – First and foremost, have you ever dealt with your workers not getting their paychecks on time? It can oftentimes lead to reduced effort on the job, not to mention disgruntled employees if it happens too often. By outsourcing your payroll needs to the right payroll service, you lessen the chances of errors happening on your watch for starters. Any well-run payroll service provider can easily cut checks or handle direct deposit, make sure your taxes are properly covered (see below), and handle items such as health insurance and 401k deductions;
Taxes – One of the biggest fears any small business owner has is getting a letter from the IRS, stating that the company’s taxes are off. With the right payroll provider handling your finances, you can make sure that the proper payroll tax deductions were made each pay period, and that W-2’s and 1099s are properly handled. Keep in mind, however, that you as the employer still maintain the final responsibility for the proper deposit and payments of all federal, state and local tax liabilities, not the payroll provider;
Direct deposit – While some employees still prefer a paper check, many workers in today’s fast-paced world like the money to go right into their bank accounts via direct deposit. Not only does this cut down on the paper expense, but it saves you from having to have checks mailed to your office, with the potential of course for being late or misplaced. Many payroll providers are happy to oversee direct deposit for your workers, making it one less thing for you to worry about;
Staying up to speed on changes – It is not uncommon for there to be changes in regulations, withholding rates and forms. As a result, do you really have time as a small business owner to review all of them? A payroll service provider has the time and the knowledge to deal with such changes, meaning your payroll will be handled according to the most recent rules and regulations;
Timing – With the New Year right around the corner, going with a payroll provider in 2013 could make it easier for both you and your workers. You start a new year off with a new service, you are up to speed on any new rules that oftentimes commence at the start of a new calendar year, and you can start saving money over the long haul by outsourcing your payroll needs;
Referrals – Last but not least, how will you go about finding the right payroll provider? Online searches and referrals are two good roads to travel. Make sure that each provider you look at is properly licensed and bonded, has a track record of proven customer service, does not come up under searches for numerous customer complaints with the Better Business Bureau (BBB), and most importantly, go over their fees. It is not uncommon for providers to charge per payroll check, along with a base account expense. With potential add-on costs, know what you will be financially responsible for before agreeing to any contract. Also, check to see if the provider has a security system in place so that no employees end up having personal data such as salaries and Social Security numbers compromised.
If you have been thinking about switching to a payroll provider, it could pay off in more ways than one for your small business.
About the Author: Dave Thomas covers small business topics for various websites, including why companies should consider payroll outsourcing.