Unlike hourly and salaried employees, truckers are paid differently since their pay rates are sometimes based on the miles driven or truckload carried. Having payroll software that can support unique scenarios and fulfill trucking-specific requirements can simplify pay processing for you.
To find the top software for payroll for trucking companies, we looked at 12 options—from those that offer general payroll solutions and services to transportation management systems (TMSes) that include payroll. We narrowed it down to our six best.
- QuickBooks Payroll: Best overall payroll software for trucking businesses
- Gusto: Best for trucking companies that want a simpler, more straightforward option for payroll and HR
- ADP Run: Best for growing trucking companies needing strong HR functionalities, like training and learning management
- Patriot: Best for startup trucking businesses that want an inexpensive payroll solution without a lot of additional tools
- TruckingOffice: Best for trucking businesses that primarily hire contractors
- Axis TMS: Best for employers who want a full-service TMS and will pay extra for an integrated payroll add-on
How We Chose the Top 6 Payroll Software for Trucking Companies
In our evaluation of the best trucking payroll software, we compared 12 solutions, removing those that did not allow payment by miles or provide some way to designate a different pay rate beyond hourly and salary. We chose solutions that offered the best mix of pay processing and trucking-specific features, giving priority to the latter.
As you review this article, you’ll notice that none of the providers scored exceptionally high as trucking payroll software. This is primarily because trucking-specific systems (like TMSes) tend to score well for trucking-related features but may rate low for essential HR and payroll functionalities. Similarly, payroll software providers that offer solid pay processing and HR solutions tend to have limited trucking features.
Based on our evaluation, QuickBooks Payroll is the best payroll system for truckers. It has a solid payroll system with employee benefits and time tracking solutions. The software is also flexible enough to handle driver payments, plus it integrates with several TMSes.
To see our full evaluation criteria for best payroll software for trucking companies, click through the tabs in the box below.
30% of Overall Score
Trucking companies need more than basic payroll. We looked for payroll companies that let you pay by miles, designate roles, track International Fuel Tax Agreement (IFTA) information, and integrate with or are part of a trucking software. While Axis TMS rated highest in this criterion, you may need to pay extra for IFTA tracking and maintenance tools, depending on the license option you select.
20% of Overall Score
We gave points for plans costing less than $50 per employee monthly. We also favored companies that have transparent pricing, no set-up fees, and unlimited pay runs. Nearly all of the software in this list earned perfect scores here, except for ADP and Axis TMS, primarily due to non-transparent pricing and expensive plans, respectively.
15% of Overall Score
Software that can calculate taxes and offers two-day direct deposits and other payroll tools (such as automatic pay runs and year-end tax report preparation and delivery) are rated favorably. While many of the TMSes on our list scored low in this criterion, they made up for it in other features (like trucking-specific tools). Gusto, ADP, and QuickBooks Payroll scored well in this area.
15% of Overall Score
We looked for features that make the software easy to learn and use, such as having an intuitive and modern-looking interface. We also checked the integration options available, file export capabilities, and the type of customer support offered. While QuickBooks Payroll, ADP, and Gusto earned scores ranging from 4 to 4.5 in this criterion, these three lost points due either to limited integration options, paid access to dedicated support, or a learning curve.
10% of Overall Score
We looked for HR tools like new hire reporting, online onboarding, compensation management, training, performance management, and self-service portals. ADP received a perfect score here given its feature-rich HR platform. Meanwhile, Axis TMS and TruckingOffice scored poorly here mainly because both are TMSes with very limited HR functionalities.
5% of Overall Score
We considered online user reviews, including those of our competitors, wherein any option with an average of 4+ stars is ideal. Also, software with 1,000 or more reviews on third-party sites is preferred. ADP, Gusto, and Patriot earned perfect scores here, while the rest of the software in this list lost a few points mainly because they had fewer than 1,000 reviews online.
5% of Overall Score
Aside from having access to standard payroll reports, we looked at whether or not you can customize them and create new ones directly from the system. The software that met all the requirements in this area include QuickBooks Payroll, ADP, and Gusto.
- Reasonably priced plans that include full-service payroll and health benefits
- Next-day direct deposits included in all tiers
- User-friendly with an intuitive interface
- Limited trucking-specific features
- Requires QuickBooks Accounting to integrate payroll and bookkeeping, including third-party TMSes
- Doesn’t handle local payroll tax payments and filings
|RATING CRITERIA||Pricing||5.00||OUT OF||5|
|Trucking-specific features||3.25||OUT OF||5|
|HR Features||3.75||OUT OF||5|
|Payroll Features||4.00||OUT OF||5|
|Ease of Use||4.50||OUT OF||5|
QuickBooks Payroll is our top-ranking software to pay truck drivers—scoring 4.06 out of 5 in our evaluation. Its pay processing tools are efficient and robust, letting you run unlimited payrolls with next- and same-day direct deposit options. It also doesn’t charge for setup, plus it works with SimplyInsured for employee health benefits and Mammoth for expert HR support. Note that the TMSes in this list don’t offer these two solutions.
However, unlike Trucking Office and Axis TMS, it has limited trucking functionalities (no IFTA information tracking) and requires QuickBooks Accounting to integrate it with a trucking management software (TMS). QuickBooks Payroll also doesn’t have a direct way to pay by miles—you have to manually calculate and input the applicable rates when you run payroll. If you have QuickBooks Accounting Online, you can set up vendor profiles for employees so you can track and reimburse mileage per driver.
With QuickBooks Payroll, you get more than just pay processing tools. Read our QuickBooks Payroll review to learn about its employee benefits, time tracking, and essential HR features.
QuickBooks Payroll Pricing
- Core: For $45 plus $4 per employee monthly, you get full-service payroll with payroll tax filings and payments (federal and state), automatic pay runs, next-day direct deposits, health benefits, and expert support via phone and 24/7 live chat.
- Premium: Priced at $75 plus $8 per employee monthly, it has all of Core’s features plus same-day direct deposits, time tracking, workers’ compensation administration, and access to expert HR support.
- Elite: This plan costs $125 plus $10 per employee monthly and comes with additional functionalities and services like project tracking, white-glove customized setup, and a personal HR adviser.
QuickBooks Payroll Standout Features
- Ease of use: QuickBooks Payroll has an intuitive interface with tools that are easy to learn and use. You can even set up and do payroll in just a few clicks. In case you require assistance, the provider offers customer support (through phone and 24/7 live chat), how-to guides, video tutorials, and a community forum with other QuickBooks users.
- Payroll processing and tax filing even while on the go: In addition to comprehensive pay processing tools and fast direct deposits (quicker than any of the providers on our list with its same-day option), its mobile apps (for iOS and Android devices) let you run payroll and electronically file and pay taxes even while on the go—provided you have an available internet connection. With its robust mobile functionalities, QuickBooks Payroll topped our list of best payroll apps. Note that other TMSes and payroll solutions in this list don’t have both mobile app tax payment and filing capabilities.
- Efficient HR tools: Online onboarding, time and paid time off (PTO) tracking, and employee benefits (such as health insurance, retirement plans, and pay-as-you-go workers’ compensation) are just some of the HR features that you get with QuickBooks Payroll.
- Integration with TMSes: You can connect to Tailwind and Kuebix—provided you have QuickBooks Accounting.
- Robust reporting: Aside from payroll-related documents, you can generate and customize reports that show time sheet activity and labor costs by driver and fleet.
- Affordable plans with health benefits in all tiers
- Multiple payment options, including payroll card and on-demand pay
- Responsive customer support
- Lacks integration with TMSes
- Has limited trucking-specific features
- Health insurance not available in all 50 states
|RATING CRITERIA||Pricing||5.00||OUT OF||5|
|Trucking-specific features||2.25||OUT OF||5|
|HR Features||4.13||OUT OF||5|
|Payroll Features||4.75||OUT OF||5|
|Ease of Use||4.00||OUT OF||5|
Gusto is a highly rated payroll software with HR functionality. Scoring 3.90 out of 5 in our evaluation, it calculates employee and contractor pay, handles PTO and time tracking, and files taxes on the federal, state, and local levels. It is affordably priced, more so than the trucking-specific software (Trucking Office and Axis) with monthly fees that start at $39 plus $6 per employee. As of this writing, Gusto also offers health insurance in 39 states and is working to get coverage for the other 11.
Similar to QuickBooks Payroll, it doesn’t track IFTA information and requires integration with expense management software to monitor mileage. However, Gusto’s solid range of easy-to-use payroll and HR tools can help you efficiently process driver payments. Many users find its interface intuitive and its support team helpful.
- Core: Priced at $39 plus $6 per employee monthly, this plan comes with unlimited pay runs, two-day direct deposits, benefits administration, automated payroll taxes, PTO tracking, new hire reporting, and employee self-service tools.
- Complete: For $39 plus $12 per employee monthly, you get all of Core’s features plus next-day direct deposits, time and project tracking, hiring, and team management tools.
- Concierge: This plan costs $149 plus $12 per employee monthly and includes additional premium features like compliance alerts, dedicated support, and access to certified HR experts.
- Contractor-only: If you have only contractors in your workforce, then Gusto lets you process payroll for them for $6 per person, per month.
- Add-ons: Gusto doesn’t charge administration fees for its health insurance and pay-as-you-go workers’ compensation plans, but you have to pay the applicable premium costs (custom priced). You also have to pay participation fees for the following:
- Retirement plans: Monthly fees start at $39 plus $8 per participating employee
- Commuter benefits: $4 per month, per participating employee (requires a monthly minimum of $20)
- Health savings accounts (HSAs): $2.50 per month, per participating employee
- Flexible spending accounts (FSAs): $4 per month, per participating employee (requires a monthly minimum of $20)
- 529 college savings: $6 per month, per participating employee (requires a monthly minimum of $18)
Gusto Standout Features
- User-friendly platform: Gusto’s intuitive platform makes navigating through all its features easy for users. Its online tools are simple to learn, unlike ADP Run that has a moderately steep learning curve, but in case you have questions about its functionalities, Gusto offers unlimited phone, email, and chat support.
- Robust payroll tools: You get full-service payroll with unlimited and automatic pay runs, plus you can add custom earning types. In addition to payroll tax payments and filings, Gusto automatically generates and sends electronic copies of W-2s/1099s to employees for free—under all of its plans. This is unlike ADP Run’s premium plans that charge an additional fee for that service.
- Multiple payment options: You can pay employees through manual checks, pay cards (Patriot and QuickBooks Payroll don’t offer this), and direct deposits (with next-day, two-day, and four-day options). It also has a “Gusto Cashout” feature that lets your staff access earned wages (wherein the amount is based on estimated accrued net salaries) before paydays.
- Efficient HR tools and support: Aside from payroll, you are granted access to hiring, onboarding, time tracking, and self-service tools, including compliance alerts and support from HR experts. While its health benefits cover only 39 states (ADP and QuickBooks Payroll offer health insurance in all states; TruckingOffice and Axis TMS don’t offer health benefits), Gusto provides several options like medical, dental, vision, retirement, commuter benefits, workers’ compensation, health reimbursements, HSA, FSA, and 529 college savings.
- Smart reporting: You can run and customize a wide range of reports, from payroll registers to bank transaction summaries and workforce costs. Gusto also has a report builder that lets you create custom payroll journals, employee lists, and employment status reports.
- Multiple payroll plans to choose from
- Feature-rich HR suite (offers hiring, payroll, time tracking, benefits, and talent management tools)
- Integrates with TMSes
- Pricing isn’t transparent
- Charges by pay run; has setup fees
- Lacks IFTA info tracking
|RATING CRITERIA||Pricing||1.00||OUT OF||5|
|Trucking-specific features||3.75||OUT OF||5|
|HR Features||5.00||OUT OF||5|
|Payroll Features||4.50||OUT OF||5|
|Ease of Use||4.38||OUT OF||5|
ADP is a versatile payroll program that can meet the needs of small to large businesses in a variety of industries, including trucking. It has multiple payroll packages with plans tailored for companies with more than 1,000 employees. It also has a wide range of features for payroll and HR and can support trucking companies as they grow.
Scoring 3.62 out of 5 in our evaluation, ADP offers a better range of payroll tools for truckers than most general payroll software. It supports non-driver staff designations and integrates with trucking software. It also has background checks, which is useful when hiring drivers. However, pricing isn’t transparent, and you have to pay setup fees.
If you want to learn more about ADP’s small business payroll solution, check out our ADP Run review.
- Software: ADP doesn’t publish its pricing online, so you have to call them to discuss your requirements and request a quote. For basic payroll, we received a quote of $9.95 per employee, per pay run for 10 employees when asking about its premium plans. While it charges setup fees, you get the first three months free. The basic product costs $59 monthly plus $4 monthly per employee.
- Add-ons: The preparation, delivery, and filing of W-2s/1099s cost extra. Other paid add-ons include time and attendance monitoring, workers’ compensation, retirement plans, and health insurance options. However, you have to call ADP to inquire about pricing details for these add-ons.
- Discounts for trucking companies: As of this writing, TruckersB2B members get a 25% discount and waived setup fees.
ADP Standout Features
- Feature-rich platform: Compared to the TMSes and other payroll software in this list, ADP has an extensive HR solution suite, enabling you to efficiently handle the entire employee lifecycle. Aside from payroll, it offers recruitment, time and attendance, benefits, learning and development, and performance management tools. It even provides HR outsourcing and professional employer organization (PEO) services.
- Efficient HR solutions: Unlike Gusto, QuickBooks Payroll, Patriot, and the TMSes in this list, ADP has online tools to help you manage both employee onboarding and background checks with ease. Its mobile apps (iOS and Android) also let your employees access their paystubs, tax forms, time sheets, and benefits information while on the go. Plus, if you need expert support, ADP has a team of HR professionals who can assist you with compliance and HR issues—provided you subscribe to its higher tiers.
- Trucker-friendly payroll tools: ADP can handle non-driver staff designations and integrates with TMSes, such as Tenstreet and allGeo. It also has the capability to pay by alternate means like miles—a pay processing functionality that most trucking companies need.
- Multiple payment options with secure paychecks: In addition to direct deposits (which are offered for free), you can pay employees through a Wisely Direct debit card. If you subscribe to ADP’s premium payroll packages, you are granted access to pay checks with advanced fraud protection features, as well as check stuffing services.
- Robust reporting: You can view, run, customize, and print a wide range of payroll and HR reports.
- Budget-friendly pricing
- Free payroll setup, expert support, and direct deposits
- Unlimited pay runs
- Lacks IFTA tracking and TMSes integrations
- Limited HR features; doesn’t offer benefits
- Federal, state, and local tax payments/filings available only in the Full Service Payroll plan
|RATING CRITERIA||Pricing||5.00||OUT OF||5|
|Trucking-specific features||4.00||OUT OF||5|
|HR Features||0.00||OUT OF||5|
|Payroll Features||3.25||OUT OF||5|
|Ease of Use||1.63||OUT OF||5|
If you want to run payroll at any time and need a reliable system that makes it easy to calculate pay and taxes, Patriot can get the job done. With its mobile-responsive platform, you can access its system from your smartphone and tablet’s web browser—provided you have an available internet connection. The software is affordably priced with zero setup fees, but you need to upgrade to its Full Service Payroll tier if you want federal, state, and local tax payments and filings, including year-end tax reporting. Overall, it earned 3.41 out of 5 based on our scoring criteria.
While Patriot offers a simple and affordable payroll solution, its HR and trucking features are limited. It doesn’t have online onboarding, benefits options, and HR experts you can consult for compliance issues. It also lacks IFTA tracking capabilities and integration options with TMSes. Nonetheless, Patriot is flexible enough to handle the basic payroll needs of a small trucking company. It is highly rated by users for functionality and ease of use.
If you’re wondering whether Patriot has the essential payroll tools that your business needs, check out our Patriot review to learn more about its capabilities.
- Basic Payroll: This tier comes with all of Patriot’s pay processing tools, except for payroll tax filings and payments (including year-end reporting). Monthly fees start at $10 plus $4 per employee. Compared to QuickBooks Payroll and Gusto, Patriot’s starter plan rates are more affordable. ADP’s rates are also competitive, but pricing isn’t transparent.
- Full Service Payroll: Unlike Basic, this plan includes Patriot’s payroll tax filing and payment services. You’ll also be covered by a tax filing accuracy guarantee, wherein Patriot will cover all penalties and interests in case your taxes aren’t paid and filed correctly and on time. Monthly fees start at $30 plus $4 per employee.
- Add-ons: Patriot’s basic HR software and time tracking solution each costs an additional $6 plus $2 per employee, per month. If you want to use its accounting system, you have to pay $15 and $25 monthly for its basic and premium editions, respectively.
Patriot Standout Features
- Mobile-responsive platform: Unlike the other software in this list, Patriot has a mobile-responsive system that works on computers, smartphones, and tablets. You don’t have to download apps—all you need is a web browser and an internet connection. This makes pay processing easier because it allows you to run payroll at any time and from anywhere.
- Easy to use: Its online tools are simple to learn and use. You can even set up and run payroll with Patriot in just a few steps. In case you need assistance, the provider offers how-to guides and customer support through phone, chat, and email.
- Efficient payroll tools: In addition to unlimited pay runs, it can handle multi-location payroll, multiple pay rates, employee and contractor payments, and all pay frequencies—from biweekly to monthly. While it has standard hours and money types, you can add your own, like bonuses and mileage reimbursements.
- Multiple driver pay options (e.g., pay by mile, load percent, and custom designation)
- Offers full truckload (FTL), less than load (LTL), and IFTA solutions
- Straightforward interface with easy-to-use tools
- Limited payroll tools (doesn’t have tax filing capabilities)
- Lacks HR features
- No auto-pay runs
|RATING CRITERIA||Pricing||5.00||OUT OF||5|
|Trucking-specific features||4.50||OUT OF||5|
|HR Features||0.00||OUT OF||5|
|Payroll Features||1.25||OUT OF||5|
|Ease of Use||3.25||OUT OF||5|
TruckingOffice is a cloud-based TMS for managing dispatches, invoices, expenses, and fleet maintenance. It offers multiple plans that are reasonably priced with monthly fees that start at $20 for an owner/operator with up to two trucks.
Scoring 3.24 out of 5 in our evaluation, TruckingOffice has strong TMS tools, but its pay processing features are limited—it doesn’t file payroll taxes. However, it’s still a popular option among trucking companies with simple pay processing needs. Its lack of payroll tax filing capabilities makes it an ideal choice for trucking business owners who employ only independent contractors since they don’t need to manage payroll taxes—the drivers are the ones expected to pay taxes and report their income to the IRS.
TruckingOffice’s pricing scheme is based on the size of your fleet. It offers two products, Basic and Pro.
- Basic: This tier is ideal for FTL hauling and supports pay per mile, by load percent, and manual pay. You can also enter your load and trip into the system at the same time. It has four plans:
- 1–2 trucks: $20 per month
- 3–7 trucks: $45 per month
- 8 and more trucks: $75 per month
- Unlimited dispatches: $45 per month
- Pro: This option can handle complex payment agreements like customizing the split of driver fees based on a negotiated contract. It handles both FTL and LTL hauls. Unlike Basic, Pro lets you add loads individually into the load planner and then create a dispatch by assigned planned loads per truck. It has three tiers:
- 1–2 trucks: $30 per month
- 3–7 trucks: $65 per month
- 8 and more trucks: $110 per month
- Add-ons: To access its PC Miler premium routing/mileage add-on, you have to pay the following fees:
- 1–2 trucks: $5 per month
- 3–7 trucks: $15 per month
- 8–15 trucks: $25 per month (plus $2 monthly for each additional truck in excess of 15)
TruckingOffice Standout Features
- Transparent pricing with reasonably priced plans: What’s great about TruckingOffice is that there are no surprises when it comes to pricing. All of the monthly fees are published on their website. Its plans are also reasonably priced, with fees that start at $20 per month.
- Unlimited pay runs: While TruckingOffice doesn’t offer automatic pay runs and tax filings (like the other payroll software in this list), it lets you process payroll as many times as you want without having to pay extra.
- Multiple driver pay options: In addition to manual pay calculations, TruckingOffice has the capability to calculate earnings by miles and load percent, including splitting the fees as indicated in negotiated driver contracts.
- Robust TMS functionalities: With its wide range of TMS tools, TruckingOffice can help you track FTL/LTL dispatches, revenue and expenses, IFTA information, and fleet maintenance. It also has an invoicing tool that lets you bill clients. Axis TMS may offer similar functionalities, but the payroll software in this list doesn’t have all of these capabilities (such as dispatch management and fleet maintenance tools).
- Ease of use
- Robust mobile app with driver-friendly tools
- Responsive customer support
- Payroll and IFTA tracking are paid add-ons (depending on the license option selected)
- Does not pay taxes; has limited HR features
- Expensive compared to similar TMSes
|RATING CRITERIA||Pricing||3.00||OUT OF||5|
|Trucking-specific features||5.00||OUT OF||5|
|HR Features||1.00||OUT OF||5|
|Payroll Features||2.00||OUT OF||5|
|Ease of Use||2.25||OUT OF||5|
Axis TMS is a TMS with integrated driver payroll, client invoicing, document scanning, and two-way messaging solutions, and it received 3.13 out of 5 based on our scoring criteria. Unlike TruckingOffice and the other payroll software in this list, it has comprehensive TMS tools and a robust mobile app (for iOS and Android devices) that lets your drivers scan and send documents, request cash advances, check shipment directions, and get order offers, among other tasks.
While Axis TMS has limited HR features, doesn’t handle payroll taxes for you, and costs more than other software we reviewed in this article, its advantage lies in having payroll directly tied to the trucking software. This makes it easy for you to determine mileage and hourly pays (including deductions for cash advance requests) to get accurate calculations.
Axis TMS Pricing
Axis TMS’ pricing scheme depends on the length of your commitment. The longer the license period, the less expensive it is. You are also granted access to features that are typically paid add-ons to its shorter license options.
- 36 Month License: $50 plus $10 per truck monthly (billed as a lump sum)
- 12 Month License: $65 plus $12 per truck monthly (billed as a lump sum)
- Monthly Recurring: $90 plus $15 per truck monthly
- Add-Ons: You have to pay extra for payroll ($50 per month), client billing ($40 per month), fleet maintenance tools ($30 per month), IFTA tracking ($3 per truck monthly), and EDI/API integrations (custom priced). Note that you won’t need to purchase some or all of these add-ons if you subscribe to either its 12- or 36-month license options.
Axis TMS Standout Features
- Robust driver mobile app: Its mobile app for drivers stands out given its features. In addition to getting order offers, you can request cash/fuel advances and maintenance assistance, scan documents, and communicate with dispatch and other drivers. It has GPS navigation, a driver logbook, and an electronic signature tool. Drivers can also check-in/out from stops, providing instant updates to customers and dispatch personnel.
- Comprehensive TMS tools: From dispatch and order management to real-time monitors and safety and fleet compliance tools, Axis TMS has a more comprehensive trucking-related toolset than TruckingOffice. It even integrates with fuel cards, PC Miler (for mileage tracking), and electronic logging devices.
- Multiple driver pay options: Compared to TruckingOffice, it offers a wider range of driver pay options. Aside from running driver payroll on weekly, biweekly, and monthly pay periods, Axis TMS can pay drivers per mile driven, truckload, percentage, and by the hour.
- Smart reporting: Some of the reports that you can generate include payroll, billing, cash advance, driver performance, fuel consumption, and truck-related reports. Axis TMS also allows you to customize reports and extract these in PDF or CSV formats.
Still not sure how to make the best choice? Check out our step-by-step guide on how to choose payroll software for your business.
Trucking companies have a lot of moving parts to keep track of—and we’re not just talking about the trucks themselves. With a good trucking payroll software, especially one that is part of a TMS or can integrate with one, your office staff can keep your drivers paid on time and accurately.
Although it’s not TMS software, we chose QuickBooks Payroll as the best payroll software for trucking companies. Through QuickBooks Accounting, it can track mileage and integrates with several TMSes. It also has a good range of payroll and HR features. Sign up for a 30-day free trial today.