2023 Deel Review: Is It the Right Global Payroll Service for Your Business?
This article is part of a larger series on Payroll Services.
Deel is an international payroll and hiring solution for businesses with plans to expand globally. In our review of the best international payroll services, Deel earned an overall score of 4.41 out of 5. It offers employer of record (EoR) services, which enables you to hire, onboard, and pay employees and contractors in more than 150 countries. Running global payroll is also a breeze with its easy-to-use online platform and multiple payment options. Further, its network of over 200 in-country expert partners ensures you remain compliant with local laws and tax regulations.
Its monthly fees for hiring and paying international contractors start at $49 per worker. If you need EoR services, Deel will charge you $599 per employee monthly. For qualified venture capital (VC)-backed startups, you get discounted pricing on your first year.
What We Like
- Free online account sign-up (you can explore its features at no cost); you will only be charged when you hire and pay global workers
- Assigns a dedicated customer success manager (CSM) to its clients
- Built-in expense and time-off management tools
- Multiple payment options (such as via bank transfer, crypto, bitcoin, digital payment processors, and a contractor card)
- Dedicated support with contractor misclassification protection services
- Doesn’t offer a special plan or discount for hiring refugees
- Dedicated CSM is not provided to small business (only available to enterprises)
- Contractor misclassification protection available only in higher tiers
- Companies with plans to hire globally but don’t want to set up in-country business entities: Hiring employees in another country typically requires you to set up a local entity. With Deel, you can recruit workers in the 80+ countries it has legal entities in. For countries where the provider doesn’t have a local entity, Deel has in-country partners that can handle your hiring needs.
- Employers looking for international contractor payroll tools: Apart from EoR services, Deel offers a contractor package to help you hire, onboard, and pay global contract workers in 150+ countries.
- Global businesses that want to avoid contractor misclassification claims: While Deel has over 200 local partners who can help you navigate in-country labor laws and regulations, its misclassification protection services include a penalty coverage of up to $25,000 if a misclassification case arises.
- Business owners who plan to hire refugees: Deel doesn’t have a special package if you want to hire refugees. If this is important to your business, consider either Oyster or Remote. Both provide EoR services for recruiting qualified refugees, with Remote offering it for free while Oyster has discounted pricing for refugee hiring services.
- Employers looking for a budget-friendly global contractor payroll solution: Deel may only charge you $49 per contractor monthly for hiring and paying global contract workers, but Papaya Global offers a more affordable package—its contractor management plan is priced at $25 per worker, per pay cycle.
- Companies that don’t have international expansion plans: Deel’s solutions and services are designed to help businesses with plans to expand globally. If you only need HR and payroll tools to manage US-based workers, consider Rippling or check out our list of the best HR payroll software to find a more suitable option.
Deel Deciding Factors
Supported Business Types
Small to large businesses that need online tools and services to help them compliantly hire and pay international workers.
None, but you can sign up for an online account and explore Deel’s platform for free. However, once you use its tools to hire and pay global workers, then Deel will start to charge the applicable fees.
VC-backed startups with less than $10 million in funding get a discount on their first year with Deel (contact the provider for a quote)
Ease of Use
Its online platform is relatively easy to learn and use, but you need to know the basics of paying international employees and global contractors.
Online FAQs and how-to guides; in-app 24/7 chat support; in-country partners and specialists; country hiring guides; dedicated account manager; access to compliance experts
Looking for something different? If you only want online tools to pay US-based employees, check out our list of the best payroll services. If you need help deciding which payroll software to get, read our guide to finding the right payroll solution.
Top Deel Alternatives
Best for: Small to midsize companies needing affordable international payroll services
Best for: Employers looking for global payroll with stock option tracking tools
Best for: Tech-heavy businesses that want global HR, payroll, and IT solutions
Base monthly fee from:
$650 per employee for EoR services $20 per employee for global payroll
Base monthly fee from:
$699 per employee for EoR services Custom-priced for global payroll
Base monthly fee from:
Custom-priced; call Rippling for quote $35 plus $8 per employee for US payroll (based on a quote we received)
Read our Papaya Global review
Read our Remote review
Read our Rippling review
In our evaluation, Deel nearly earned a perfect score for pricing given its reasonable fees, multiple plan options, and separate payroll plan for contractors. It lost points because not all of its product’s pricing details are available on its website.
For contractors, Deel offers three packages with monthly fees that start at $49 per worker. Meanwhile, its pricing plans for employees are based on whether or not you own business entities in countries you want to expand to. Note that aside from automated payroll with one-click payments, all Deel pricing packages include access to local benefits plans, expense and time-off tracking, tax document management, customizable contracts, data protection agreements, compliance support, and intellectual property and invention rights protection.
- Hire contractors: For $49 per worker monthly, you can compliantly hire and pay contractors in 150+ countries, as well as use Deel’s localized contracts, online onboarding, automated invoicing, and document management tools.
- Deel Premium: This custom-priced package comes with an additional layer of protection against contractor misclassification issues. If a misclassification claim arises, Deel will cover all legal fees, tax penalties, and third-party indemnity costs of up to $25,000.
- Deel Shield: The differences between this custom-priced plan and the Deel Premium tier include access to a global team who can help manage administrative HR tasks and a more robust contractor misclassification protection service. With this plan, Deel will review each contract and confirm whether or not you can hire the worker as a contractor. Deel will even assume total liability for contractor misclassification cases.
- Hire employees: For $599 per employee monthly, you can make use of Deel’s local entities in 80+ countries to hire, onboard, offboard, and pay employees.
- Run global payroll: This custom-priced plan is ideal for businesses with local entities worldwide and only need a payroll tool to pay international employees.
For large businesses, Deel offers custom-priced enterprise solutions. Discounted pricing is also available for VC-backed startups with less than $10 million in funding. However, the discount is only applicable during your first year with Deel. Contact the provider for a quote.
In our evaluation of Deel’s payroll features, the provider earned a 3.88 out of 5 score. It didn’t get a perfect rating in this criterion because it lacks time tracking tools (only offers PTO management) and doesn’t own local entities in all the 150+ countries it services (only 80+ as of this writing).
Regardless of whether you have international employees or contractors, Deel supports payroll processing for both worker types. With local entities in 80+ countries, its in-house payroll team manages pay processes, salary calculations and deductions, government declarations, and payroll taxes (including generating required tax forms and year-end documents) for you. Payroll runs are also automated, plus you can pay your global team with just one click.
For contractors, Deel automatically generates invoices depending on the contract details, such as completed milestones, projects, and tasks (or the number of actual hours worked). Contract workers can also add and remove extra items to and from invoices like bonuses and expenses. Once approved, Deel will process the applicable payments and send these to the workers’ accounts.
With Deel supporting payroll payments in over 200 currencies, your international employees can receive their salaries through their local bank accounts and in their local currency. If you have US employees who prefer to be paid in crypto, Deel’s partnership with Coinbase allows you to do just that and with zero transaction fees. Aside from bank transfers and Coinbase, your workers can get their pay through PayPal, Wise, Payoneer, Binance, and Revolut.
Contractors can opt to get a Deel card (costs $5), which they can use to receive their payroll in USD. The card also works as a debit card, allowing your team members to use their earnings to purchase personal items either online or in-store.
The Deel card is available as a virtual card, which is optimal for online purchases only. For an additional $5, your contractors can apply for a physical card for both online and in-store purchases. If your contract workers opt to get a physical card, they will receive the item in around 10–15 days after the online application, depending on the location.
As of this writing, the Deel card is available only in the following countries.
- United Kingdom
Note, however, that Deel card transactions that are non-USD have a 1.25% fee. The card also doesn’t automatically have ATM withdrawal capabilities, but you can apply for it. For the card to be eligible for ATM withdrawals, it has to be an active account and your business must pass Deel’s know your customer (KYC) process. This process involves verifying your identity and checking whether there are potential risks of unlawful use of Deel’s platform.
Having your Deel account verified not only unlocks the Deel contractor card’s ATM withdrawal functionality but also grants you access to additional client payment methods, such as SEPA direct debits for Europe bank transactions. It even comes with perks, like discounts with some of Deel’s partner software and a cash advance option for contractors.
Part of the advantages of having your account verified by Deel include access perks to contract workers, allowing them early access to client payments and short-term cash advances with zero interest rates.
Contract workers can use Deel’s early withdrawal feature to get their earned salaries or upcoming client payments up to five days before the scheduled payday. Your eligible contractors can instantly transfer payments to their Deel accounts, provided that you have approved their invoices and Deel has processed the payments.
For this service, Deel charges a 1% fee with a maximum of up to $15 USD. Note, however, that the standard fund withdrawal processing time for banks and digital payment processors still applies. Contractors with outstanding Deel cash advances also can’t use its early withdrawal feature.
With Deel Advance, your eligible contract workers can get an agreed amount (max of $20,000 USD) of their earned salaries or payments in advance. If approved, Deel will instantly credit the amount to the contractor’s account and then automatically deduct it from the worker’s upcoming client payments.
Aside from a one-time fixed fee, the service is free if the amount to be advanced is up to $50. However, if the amount exceeds $50, Deel charges a flat fee of 3% with a minimum of $10 USD.
Note that the provider uses an algorithm to determine the maximum amount that a contractor can get. All Deel cash advances are in USD—although the contractor can choose to withdraw or repay it in another currency (standard exchange rates will apply). Contract workers also can’t use Deel’s early withdrawal feature if they have an outstanding Deel cash advance.
With Deel, you can choose to pay employees directly or have the provider do it for you. If you select the former, Deel will provide a CSV file containing all payment details for the payroll period. You can use the file to process the employee payments and transfer the salaries to your employees’ bank accounts. Note, however, that this process is optimal for businesses with local entities or a local HR team in countries where their international employees work.
If you prefer to have Deel handle this for you, the provider will send you a funding request for the total payroll amount. Funding Deel’s payroll request can be done via bank transfer, Wise, Coinbase, credit card, and automated clearing house (ACH) direct debit. After you approve the request, Deel will process the payroll payouts to your employees.
Deel earned perfect marks for HR functionalities given its solid compliance support and onboarding/offboarding tools. With its EoR services, Deel handles hiring and essential HR administrative tasks for you so you can find and hire qualified candidates. Aside from granting access to customizable employment contracts and local benefits plans, it has online global hiring guides that you can use for free.
With Deel, you can create, send, and sign employment contracts that comply with local labor laws. To help protect your business from unnecessary risk, the provider works with in-country legal experts to keep your employment contracts up-to-date with labor law changes on a quarterly basis. Deel also offers document management tools, providing you and your employees with a centralized platform to view and manage contracts, benefits plans, expense claims, time-off requests, and more.
Deel’s online platform is designed to streamline and automate the onboarding process, helping you collect information and required employment documents from your new hires. It also offers 24/7 support in 12 languages in case your employees have questions about the onboarding process or need assistance with setting up their Deel online profiles.
Included in Deel’s EoR service is access to local benefits plans and competitive health options that you can offer to your employees. If you want to provide benefits to international contractors, Deel offers a 50% discount for full health insurance coverage (via a Remote Safety Wing plan) in most countries.
In addition to its contractor misclassification risk protection services, which include contract review and liability coverage, Deel has over 200 legal hiring experts around the globe to help keep you compliant with local labor laws and regulations. Signing up for its Deel Shield contractor plan even provides access to a global team who can help you manage HR administrative tasks.
If you require visa assistance for your international workforce, Deel’s in-house team of experts can help handle this for you—from assessing your employee’s work visa eligibility based on local requirements and providing visa application support. However, as of this writing, this service is available only in the following countries.
- South Korea
If you have global work-from-home employees, Deel’s partnership with Hofy lets you find, rent, ship, and retrieve your remote team’s computer devices and peripherals, like laptops, computer monitors, webcams, keyboards, headphones, and mobile phones. In addition to sending the items via door-to-door delivery, Hofy will handle customs, tax compliance, and shipping documents for you.
In case your employees require IT support, they can contact Hofy’s Remote IT Service Desk for assistance. For laptop repair, Hofy will help with the repair service and provide a loaner device if your employee needs one.
Deel also offers a Deel Equipment solution, which allows you to create and send agreements to compliantly assign business devices and tools to your global employees and contractors. This service costs $19 per item, and Deel will only charge you after the agreement is signed by all parties (note that this doesn’t include Hofy’s rental fees for the equipment).
In our evaluation of Deel’s reporting functionalities, the provider received a perfect rating in this criterion given the payroll and tax reports it provides. Reports are also downloadable in CSV and PDF file formats.
In addition to localized employment contracts that you can customize, it has a library of job profiles you can use to identify your contractors’ scope of work. It even comes with salary benchmarks based on market insights to help you check whether or not the salary you’re offering for a specific job title is below, at par, or above market rates.
Deel earned high marks in this category given its user-friendly platform, solid HR and compliance support, and 24/7 customer assistance. It didn’t get a perfect rating because it lacks phone support and doesn’t provide dedicated account managers to all of its clients (only to large businesses).
- Easy-to-use platform
- One-click payments and automated processes
- Visa support
- Online global hiring guides and tools
- How-to guides
- 24/7 in-app live chat support
- Dedicated customer success manager
- Access to legal and compliance experts
- Accounting and HR software integrations with open API
What I appreciate about Deel is the compliance support it offers, helping you manage global employees while ensuring you remain compliant with local labor laws and tax regulations. Its online platform is relatively simple to learn and use, plus it comes with online tools that make global hiring and pay processing easier to handle.
Tracking important deadlines and tasks (such as payment and time-off requests) is also made easy through Deel’s online dashboard. Reminders are sent to you via email, and you can choose what type of notifications you can receive from Deel.
For those who are using accounting, financial, and HR software, Deel integrates with popular systems like QuickBooks, Xero, Workday, Expensify, Greenhouse, BambooHR, HiBob, and Workable. It also supports custom integrations via an application programming interface (API).
If you require assistance, its help center contains how-to guides, FAQs, and articles that provide more insight into its services. If you have questions about global recruiting, Deel’s website has a hiring toolkit that contains salary insights, a misclassification quiz for identifying the risks of hiring a contractor, and online tools for exploring local benefits packages, calculating employee costs, and comparing local laws and employer costs in more than 80 countries.
What I don’t appreciate about Deel is the lack of phone support. You can only contact its support team through live chat and submit inquiries via the “Submit a request” online form. While it has dedicated account managers, Deel only provides this to large businesses.
In our expert assessment, Deel earned a rating of 3.75 out of 5. Its relatively user-friendly interface, efficient EoR services, and solid global payroll tools contributed to its score. It lost points because its HR solutions, while sufficient enough to handle global hiring and onboarding, aren’t as robust as competitors like Rippling’s all-in-one HR platform. For example, aside from hiring and payroll, Rippling comes with time tracking, learning management, employee surveys, and a flexible professional employment organization (PEO) service you can easily turn on and off—features that Deel doesn’t have.
Further, Deel’s EoR and global contractor solutions aren’t as budget-friendly as similar international payroll services. For instance, Papaya Global offers contractor management for only $25 per worker, per pay cycle (Deel’s monthly fee starts at $49 per contractor). Meanwhile, Oyster’s EoR service starts at $399 per employee monthly (Deel’s is priced at $599 per employee monthly).
Many of the Deel reviews on third-party review sites like G2, Capterra, and Trustpilot are positive. In our evaluation of this provider’s popularity among users, Deel received a 3.75 out of 5 score in this criterion given its average rating of 4 and up on online review sites. It didn’t get a perfect score in our assessment because its average user reviews didn’t reach 1,000.
However, most of the positive Deel reviews are about its solid EoR and payroll solutions that make handling hiring and employee management processes easy for global businesses. Several users also appreciate the onboarding and account support that Deel offers through its customer success managers (CSMs).
Those who left Deel payroll reviews like that its online platform provides visibility on all payments and comes with various currency options and salary withdrawal methods. They even highlighted its software’s ease of use, legal local contracts, and online onboarding tools as some of Deel’s best features.
On the other hand, some reviewers said that Deel’s pricing can be a little high, especially if you have a large team. Others mentioned that its reporting tools aren’t robust and that its in-app chat support tool can be glitchy at times. Several users also commented that while you get good service from Deel’s CSMs, the quality of support you receive from its general customer service team is less than ideal. A few reviewers complained of having experienced poor after-sales service and encountering unresponsive support reps.
At the time of publication, Deel reviews earned the following scores on popular user review sites:
- G2: 4.3 out of 5 based on more than 200 reviews
- Capterra: 3.7 out of 5 based on nearly 30 reviews
- Trustpilot: 4.8 out of 5 based on 1,700+ reviews
How We Evaluated Deel
We looked at the provider’s features (both HR and payroll) and payment options. We also considered ease of use, transparency in pricing, HR and compliance support, and customer support. Access to third-party integrations, employee benefits plans, and onboarding tools is also important. We even check the feedback that actual users posted on popular user review sites.
Click through the tabs below for our full evaluation criteria:
25% of Overall Score
We looked for convenience features like automatic pay runs, local tax filing, and the ability to pay contractors and employees with manual check capabilities and direct deposit. Providers rank better if their services are available in more than 100 countries, with a team of in-country payroll and HR compliance experts.
20% of Overall Score
We highly favored providers that showed straightforward pricing with multiple plan options. In addition to each software’s per-employee pricing, we checked if any required setup fees. We also gave more points to providers that allow unlimited pay runs and have multiple plan options.
15% of Overall Score
The best global payroll service includes essential HR features, such as onboarding, self-service portals, and benefits. We favored companies that offered tools to help with legal compliance issues. We also considered PEO services and benefit and deduction assistance.
15% of Overall Score
The global payroll software should have no setup fee and be easy to use. We also looked for an intuitive user platform, including live phone support, training options, and flawless integration with other software.
10% of Overall Score
In addition to the number of payroll reports, we considered whether they are customizable or if you could create special reports for your specific need.
10% of Overall Score
Sometimes, a service can check all the boxes but not be the best fit for a small business. The expert review is our opinion on how well a service meets SMB needs for payroll and HR, including its general value for the dollar.
5% of Overall Score
We took the average review ratings from third-party sites like G2 and Capterra, which are also based on a 5-star scale. Any option with an average of 4+ stars is ideal. We also favored software with 1,000+ reviews on any third-party site.
If you plan to expand business operations outside of the US and ramp up hiring to complete your global workforce, Deel is a good option. Its EoR service removes the burden of handling global hiring, payroll, tax, benefits, and HR processes by yourself. Deel’s international payroll services also cover more than 150 countries, with the provider owning local entities in 80+ locations. And even if it lacks a legal entity in a country, its partner of 200+ local experts can guide you through the complexities of finding, recruiting, paying, and managing a global workforce.
Sign up for a Deel plan today.