May 20, 2022
2022 Gusto vs QuickBooks Payroll: Which Is Better for Your Business?
Gusto and QuickBooks Payroll are affordable software options for small business owners. Both offer full-service payroll with unlimited pay runs and direct deposits, including payroll tax processing and filing. Gusto offers contractor-only pricing, better benefits options, and more human resources (HR) tools. QuickBooks Payroll, on the other hand, offers faster direct deposit processing time and health insurance in all 50 states (vs Gusto’s 39 states). Based on our comparison, we’ve determined the following: : Best for small businesses needing to run payroll―for employees and/or contractors―plus access to some complementary HR tools and services : Best for small businesses offering health insurance to employees across the United States or those already using other Intuit QuickBooks software Gusto vs QuickBooks Payroll Compared Key Takeaway: If you need full-service payroll with robust HR support, employee benefits options, and third-party software integrations, is the best payroll solution for you. Plus, it offers a contractor payroll service that’s low cost (priced at $6 per contractor monthly). However, if you’re using QuickBooks accounting software and/or want access to health insurance benefits that are not serviceable by Gusto (Alabama, Alaska, Hawaii, Louisiana, Mississippi, Montana, Nebraska, North Dakota, South Dakota, West Virginia, Wyoming) you should consider QuickBooks Payroll. It also has fast direct deposit timelines—wherein the longest is next-day processing and the quickest is same-day processing. Although Gusto offers next-day processing, QuickBooks Payroll’s same-day processing may come in handy in some cases like when you need to process emergency paychecks. Both providers offer: Full-service payroll in 50 US states Unlimited pay runs Automated taxes and forms Deductions and garnishments Reporting tools Expert product support When To Use Gusto & When To Use QuickBooks Payroll Best in Pricing: QuickBooks Payroll Both Gusto and QuickBooks Payroll offer affordably priced product plans that come with unlimited pay runs. At first look, Gusto’s lower base fees for the Core and Complete plans may seem more affordable than QuickBooks Payroll’s Core and Premium plans. However, QuickBooks Payroll’s lower per-employee pricing makes it more cost-efficient than Gusto once you have more than three employees. Here’s a comparison of the two providers’ pricing for 10 employees for their Core plans: Gusto: $99 per month, calculated as ($6 per employee x 10 employees) + $39 QuickBooks Payroll: $85 per month, calculated as ($4 per employee x 10 employees) + $45 For $45 plus $4 per employee monthly with QuickBooks Payroll’s Core plan, you get full-service payroll, next-day direct deposit, federal and state tax payments and filings, and access to 401(k) plans and health benefits. You get similar features with Gusto’s Core plan for $39 plus $6 per employee. However, if you only employ contractors, Gusto offers a contractor-only plan costing $6 per month, per person. QuickBooks Payroll doesn’t have a special pricing scheme for contractors, so you have to pay the same rates as indicated in its three plans. Best for Payroll Features: Gusto When it comes to payroll processing, Gusto and QuickBooks Payroll have similar feature sets. Both offer automated payroll and tax processing and year-end tax report preparation and online delivery of Form W-2s and 1099s. However, QuickBooks Payroll lacks a pay-on-demand option that allows your employees to be paid their earnings whenever they want. Also, with QuickBooks Payroll’s Core plan, you get payroll tax payments and filings only for state and federal taxes. For local taxes, you have to print the forms and file them with or upload them to the applicable local sites yourself (unless you’re subscribed to its Premium or Elite plans). Moreover, Gusto’s payroll automation can handle pay processing for salaried and hourly workers, whereas QuickBooks Payroll’s automation is only for salaried employees. When QuickBooks Payroll’s Payroll Features Are Enough If you require same-day direct deposits, then you may want to consider QuickBooks Payroll. Gusto provides two-day direct deposits for its Core package and next-day processing for its Complete and Concierge plans. Best for HR Features & Employee Benefits: Gusto With Gusto and QuickBooks Payroll, you get a self-service portal that employees can use to view their pay slips and employee benefits online. Both providers also offer access to expert professionals who you can contact to get HR, payroll, and compliance advice. However, we’ve found Gusto to have better HR functionality. Some of Gusto’s essential HR features include new hire state reporting and a wide range of employee benefits options such as health insurance, commuter benefits, and flexible spending accounts. It even has workers’ compensation administration, a functionality that Gusto offers across all of its product plans. Additionally, you get access to online offer letters, customizable onboarding tools, employee surveys, and a staff directory. QuickBooks Payroll, on the other hand, can only generate new hire state reports, and you have to file the actual reports yourself. Its benefits options are also limited to health insurance plans, and while it does offer workers’ compensation administration, it is available only for Premium and Elite subscribers. When QuickBooks Payroll’s HR Features & Employee Benefits Are Enough Although QuickBooks Payroll only offers health insurance as an employee benefit, what’s great about it is that it covers all 50 US states. Gusto’s health insurance coverage is limited to specific states. At the moment, Gusto doesn’t offer health insurance to the following states: Alabama Alaska Hawaii Louisiana Mississippi Montana Nebraska North Dakota South Dakota West Virginia Wyoming Best for Ease of Use, Customer Support & Integrations: Gusto When it comes to ease of use, Gusto and QuickBooks Payroll have user-friendly and intuitive platforms. Both offer phone support, including access to HR advisers and how-to guides. However, for third-party software integrations, Gusto has a more robust selection. Meanwhile, QuickBooks Payroll primarily offers integration with Intuit products. If you use your existing accounting software, you’ll have to manually input data from your accounting software into QuickBooks Payroll. With Gusto, you can integrate with accounting, POS, business operations, and time tracking solutions. Gusto integrations: FreshBooks, Xero, QuickBooks Online, ZipBooks, Sunrise, Homebase, QuickBooks Time, When I Work, Ximble, 7shifts, Clover, Upserve, Veryfi, Vagaro, and Hubstaff QuickBooks Payroll integrations: All Intuit products Gusto & QuickBooks Payroll User Reviews Gusto: Users who left reviews on G2 and Capterra rated it 4.3 and 4.7 stars, respectively. Reviewers highlighted ease of use, straightforward and intuitive interface, and good customer support as Gusto’s top features. It also helps small businesses to be compliant legally with wage laws. The complaints, meanwhile, include occasional software glitches and a desire for a wider offering of HR tools, reporting features, and software integration options. QuickBooks Payroll: Users gave QuickBooks Payroll 3.6 and 4.5 stars on G2 and Capterra, respectively. Most of the positive comments it received include “easy to implement” and “user-friendly.” There are mixed reviews about its customer support—some users noted its support team isn’t knowledgeable, while others said they received good service. Some also mentioned that it needs to have more robust reporting features. How We Evaluated Gusto vs Intuit QuickBooks Payroll To compare the two providers, we looked at the providers’ payroll solutions and HR services for small businesses. Apart from looking at employee pay and payroll tax processing functionalities, we checked whether HR tools and employee benefits are part of their offerings. Ease of use, pricing, and customer support are also key criteria, including whether users have access to expert professionals who can provide HR and payroll advice. Based on our evaluation, QuickBooks Payroll and Gusto are both easy to use and have similar customer support tools. However, Gusto offered more robust payroll, HR, and benefits features. Gusto also integrates with more third-party software while QuickBooks Payroll is more affordable for small businesses. Bottom Line To help you choose a payroll solution that’s best for your business—be it Gusto or QuickBooks Payroll—start by assessing how many employees you have and plan to have in the future, along with your need for HR support and software integrations. You should also determine if you want to offer benefits and, if so, consider if any are negotiable. If you’re already using QuickBooks’ accounting software, then QuickBooks Payroll may be a better option. The learning curve will be much lower than you’d get with other small business software, and you can provide your employees with health insurance benefits in any state. However, if you need more than just health insurance benefits to build a quality team or your business and employees are in an eligible state, consider Gusto. You'll get more onboarding and HR support plus more affordable plan options.
May 20, 2022
How To Leave a PEO in 7 Steps + FREE Checklist
Knowing how to leave a professional employer organization (PEO) can be challenging for small businesses. You have to think about when to notify your PEO provider, what information you need to disclose to your employees, and how to make the transition seamless. We’ve made this task easier with a free downloadable and customizable PEO exit checklist. To ensure a smooth transition, you need to consistently communicate with both your old and new providers to make sure nothing, like payroll or tax payments, slips through the cracks. You should also perform a thorough analysis of cost changes for both you and your employees—and be sure to notify them of changing health insurance premiums. Follow these steps for a successful transition. 1. Define How HR & Payroll Needs Will Be Met Before you start the process of leaving your current PEO, it’s important to know where you are going. Will you be using another PEO service? Will you be transitioning to an HR provider? Will you be transitioning to a payroll provider? Will you be taking over the process in-house? You should determine this early to ensure you won’t experience a gap in services. For instance, PEOs handle payroll; if you’re switching to a DIY payroll provider that doesn’t file taxes in your state, you’ll need to set up a process in-house to ensure you don’t miss any deadlines. Or, you can weigh your options and consider a full-service provider. Also, determine how much HR expertise your company has access to under your PEO. If you find yourself calling for labor law guidance every other week, you’ll need to consider how you will work around that should you sign up with a provider that doesn’t have certified HR experts. 2. Figure Out the Best Time To Make the Change Typically, the best time to change providers that perform payroll services for you is either at quarter-end or year-end. It helps you make a clean cut when it comes to taxes; if you switch providers at any other time during the year, you’ll need to ensure that none of your tax liabilities slip through the cracks. Make it a point to work with your PEO representative to send any related tax and payroll paperwork over to your new provider, and make sure that the new provider is clear on what it should do with them. When you make the switch, you’ll need to verify your year-to-date payroll numbers. Sometimes, new providers don’t transfer all of your prior period data over, which can cause issues. Payroll records will be incorrect, including your year-end tax forms, if the software pulls the data from payroll entries. However, most payroll and HR software companies will assist you in uploading the information before your first pay run is complete. Regardless of when you choose to change HR payroll providers, give yourself enough lead time to perform all of the tasks on your to-do list. 3. Gather Stored Company & Employee Information Many PEOs will still allow you to access your data after you leave, but it can be challenging if you’re not able to freely log in and navigate their software. Therefore, be sure to collect copies of the following payroll documents: Company tax information Employee payroll tax information Employee deductions PTO balances Benefits data Performance evaluations Termination records You should also consider where you will store the information when you have it. Will you use your own network? Will you print them and save them as paper files (which isn’t very efficient if you’re a growing company)? Or are you able to upload them directly to your new provider’s database? 4. Communicate Health Insurance Option Changes to Employees One of the primary benefits of using a PEO is the competitive health insurance rates, and unless you’re leaving for a different PEO, your employees will likely experience a rise in coverage costs. It’s important that you obtain clear details on what those new options are and how much they will cost, so you can communicate to your employees as soon as possible. Dropping the ball in this area could lower morale and cause employee turnover. If there’s going to be a significant increase in insurance rates (and it’s a big possibility), do your best to explore as many options as possible. If you are no longer offering company-sponsored health insurance, consider offering credit to your employees’ paychecks so they can use it to purchase insurance on the Marketplace. 5. Request Updated Information on Employees’ FSA/HRA Accounts As part of your health coverage, you may currently be offering your employees a flexible spending account (FSA) or health reimbursement arrangement (HRA). However, you need to understand that all funds associated with these accounts stay with the PEO company when you leave—meaning the PEO (employer of record) retains the right to all funds contributed, not you the employer. When you leave your PEO you will need to determine if those accounts will remain open with the PEO or get closed and reopened with another provider. Ask if the PEO will continue to process claims until the end of the FSA and HRA period or if you need to transition that responsibility to another administrator. It’s possible you will have to pay a fee for the PEO to maintain this service. Employees will also need to be made aware of their current balances and how much time they have remaining to spend it. If the PEO will not continue to manage the funds until the renewal period, then your employees may need to go ahead and spend their balances (likely within 30 days of leaving the PEO). 6. Check HR & Payroll Compliance Obligations Because your PEO functioned as a co-employer, you will be transitioning to fully employ your workers on your own. And as a somewhat new employer, there are certain factors you’ll need to consider and prepare for: Ensure you have a federal and state tax ID number to file taxes under: PEOs file employer taxes under their own IDs, so this isn’t something you’ve had to be concerned with for a while—or at all if you’ve been using a PEO since your business started. Check for both withholding and unemployment tax accounts. Time workers’ compensation so there’s no gap in coverage: Workers’ comp insurance is a requirement in all states except Texas, so you’ll likely need to maintain it. Check that your new provider offers it, and be sure the start date is immediately after the end date with your PEO. Figure out COBRA obligations: Since the PEO’s relationship is being terminated, they will be responsible for sending COBRA notices to your employees; double-check that they do, however. You might also be charged a hefty fee if the PEO has to manage any COBRA accounts. Review any garnishment orders: If your PEO was managing any garnishments for you, you’ll need to assume responsibility for it. Ask for copies of the garnishment order, so you have it for your records. It’s best to be proactive and communicate the employer change to the applicable court that issued the order (contact information should be on the withholdings order) and set up a process to start withholding and sending funds as soon as the PEO stops. Set up your own payroll: When you leave a PEO, you also leave your current payroll process. Be sure to set up payroll with another provider before leaving so that you have everything in order when the switch happens. This includes making sure that your payroll is run on the same schedule, letting your employees know what deductions to expect from their new payroll, and how their pay will be distributed (i.e., direct deposit, pay card, or paper check). This is especially important if any of these will be changing (i.e., moving from pay card to direct deposit). 7. Create New Employee Paperwork If this is your first time fully employing workers, you’ll need to put together an onboarding packet. This packet should include: Direct deposit form Form W-4 Form I-9 Employee handbook Leave policies Non-discrimination policy Sexual harassment policy Be sure to take a close look at the policies your PEO required and confirm that you want to maintain those once the relationship ends. You might need to create new documents with these policies in them if you’re unable to make a copy of the PEO’s documents or if they are very specific to the PEO. Also, communicate any changes to employees—have them sign a new acknowledgment form for good measure. Top Reasons Companies Leave a PEO Companies leave PEOs for a few reasons. In most cases, it is a reaction to growth due to hiring or expanding locations and an increased desire to utilize resources in-house and control the company culture and benefits. Benefits choices: While PEOs can often help smaller companies obtain better benefit rates, as a company grows, it may earn competitive rates on its own from a broader choice of providers. Corporate culture and industry expertise: Companies striving to create a specific yet evolving corporate culture may find that they can control it better by utilizing an in-house team with industry experience. Misalignment or duplicate resources: Some companies find that their in-house teams and PEO resources are misaligned and not working well together, or they may be paying for duplicate resources. In some cases, it becomes a harmful “us and them” type situation. Fast growth: As companies grow and hire, they may find that their current PEO cannot provide services to the new locations. So, they may choose to move those services in-house rather than contracting with multiple PEOs. Or, the company is growing so big that using a PEO is more expensive than hiring an in-house HR team. What To Consider Before Leaving a PEO Before migrating away from your PEO service, you’ll need to consider all contingencies carefully to ensure a smooth transition. Also, assemble your team leaders to discuss how the changes may affect their processes and resource needs, and bring on additional resources, such as HR and accounting team members if needed. Consider the following: Costs: Before, during, and after the change Time: When to start the process, how long it will take, how long to implement and onboard the new PEO or HR team HR management: How will HR processes be managed during and after the change Business interruptions: How to keep processing running during the process What To Consider After Leaving a PEO After running the first round of payroll, work with team leaders and managers to determine the next steps. Discover roadblocks and problem areas to relieve. Hopefully, the change went well, but if not, now is the time to fix any issues. Your situation will be unique, but it may help to consider the following actions: Schedule the HR team to follow up with the "new employees" to help them navigate the changes. Consider adding benefit choices. Create culture-building materials and team-building activities. Build new performance plans. Share company information such as new organizational charts. Remove redundant resources if needed. Review technologies and consider new additions if helpful. Audit compliance, tax, and legal requirements to ensure compliance. Bottom Line Leaving a PEO service is a positive step for many growing businesses looking to pull in costs and control their workforce. However, successful change depends on careful planning and management of a long list of details. With a good team and thoughtful planning, leaving your PEO can go smoothly.
May 20, 2022
What Is a Learning Management System? A Small Business Guide
A learning management system (LMS) is a platform that makes it easy to organize, manage, and administer your small business’ training content. Also commonly referred to as a training management system or learning experience platform, LMS software simplifies the administration of employee-specific and companywide training while tracking employee progress, performance, and satisfaction. This makes it an excellent solution for businesses in highly regulated industries and companies that prioritize employee training and growth. How Learning Management Systems Work Individual employees can be assigned personal login credentials to a cloud- or software-based LMS to access unique training materials. Once training is underway, administrators can monitor each employee, looking at completion rates, progress (through training requirements), and performance (through online assessments). This data can be analyzed within the LMS or be synced with a human resources information system (HRIS) or other talent management tools to draw correlations between training and employee satisfaction, advancement, and attrition. Cloud-based LMS Cloud-based LMSs are hosted on the internet and accessed by logging in to a web portal that houses all of a business’ training materials. No software is required, so this is an excellent format for businesses that rely on remote training sessions. They provide an efficient way for organizations to manage their courses, messages, and content across multiple devices. They also allow users to access learning resources from anywhere, at any time. In addition, cloud-based LMSs are cost-effective, making them a great choice for small businesses and organizations that need to scale quickly. Software-based LMS Software LMSs are programs loaded directly onto your computer that allows individual access to training materials. Unlike cloud-based, where you can access your training from anywhere, using software LMS will likely require you to log in to one dedicated device. This could potentially slow training, but can allow for more control and security than cloud-based platforms. Once logged in, system administrators—like a business’ HR team—can upload educational resources, create and administer quizzes and other assessments, and track the progress of individual learners or the team as a whole. Many LMSs streamline this process through automated notifications to keep employees on track. Using an LMS With an HRIS If your business relies on an HRIS to manage its HR needs, integrating it with an LMS can improve data syncing and streamline reporting. Not only can an LMS-HRIS integration make it easier to track employee progress, but it can also simplify the onboarding process and reduce discrepancies and the amount of time spent entering data. Having all of your business’ HR and training data in one place can also help your team spot relationships between training and other important metrics like employee productivity, engagement, satisfaction, and turnover. If you already have an HRIS, contact your account manager to find out what kind of LMS options are available. Some platforms, like , include built-in training tracking that can take the place of a full LMS; others require a third-party integration. What To Look for in an LMS The best LMS for your business depends on a number of factors, like budget, number of employees, and whether you’re in a highly regulated industry. However, there are several more common features to consider when choosing a platform. Some of the most helpful LMS features include the ones listed below. Integrations If you use an HRIS, talent management software, payroll service, or other platform to manage and administer your business’ HR strategy, look for an LMS that can integrate with those tools. Integrations make it easier to sync employee data and can significantly reduce the time spent entering and analyzing that information. Larger companies with the infrastructure to develop their own proprietary LMS can design custom LMS tools to integrate with current systems. Automations Automations and notifications can help both HR leadership and employees meet their training goals. By setting up course completion deadlines and training timelines, your business's HR department can ensure employees are getting automated reminders when it’s time to meet specific training requirements. These automations and notifications also make it easier for HR to monitor where each individual learner is in the training process—and identify who is falling behind or failing to meet compliance requirements. For training beyond your company’s minimum requirements, many LMS options can use algorithms to make additional course recommendations based on the user’s interests, role, and performance. User-friendly Learning Hub Having an easy-to-use centralized learning hub means your business’ HR team and other employees can quickly and conveniently access training materials. Not only does this improve the learning process, but it can also cut down on the frustration that often comes with training and certification requirements. Look for an LMS that offers an enjoyable user experience for learners and a streamlined interface for those managing and tracking employee training. Tailored Training If you’re offering training to team members in different departments—like engineering, marketing, and sales—you may want to provide a different learning environment for each. In this case, look for an LMS that lets you personalize the training experience by curating relevant coursework for each employee or department. Depending on the type of training you plan to offer, you may want an LMS that features adaptive assessments and quizzes that automatically adjust based on a learner’s mastery of the materials. Data & Compliance Tracking One benefit of LMSs in business is that they let HR professionals track an employee’s progress through available training materials. Not only does this let businesses better understand the status and effectiveness of their training strategy, but it also makes it easy to spot patterns in employee behavior. For example, using data available through an LMS may reveal that highly trained employees are more engaged and have a lower attrition rate. Likewise, you may find that employees who are not required to complete periodic training are less engaged and, therefore, more likely to leave the company. If your business is in a regulated industry, look for an LMS that offers compliance tracking tools. These features make it easier to track individual knowledge, performance, and gaps, while creating a compliance record that can be referenced in an audit. Reporting & Analytics For many business owners, reporting and analytics are among the most important features of an outstanding LMS. While your HR team may be able to administer training courses without too much effort, tracking who has completed and passed each training requirement can be more daunting. Common reporting features include progress and completion rates, assessment results, participation and engagement, and time logs. Many businesses can also benefit from analytics that track learner satisfaction and course ratings. Consider how you plan to utilize an LMS and choose the most beneficial reporting tools based on those needs. Assessment Tools & Test-out Options In addition to using adaptive assessments to tailor the user experience, many HR departments find value in advanced assessment tools for tracking employee progress. This can help your team measure everything from learner engagement to comprehension and, ultimately, retention. If assessments are an important element of your business’ training strategy, look for an LMS with options like quizzes, exams, simulations, and feedback mechanisms to help learners improve over time. Where appropriate, assessments can also help employees test out of lessons. Ultimately, this may reduce the time employees spend in unnecessary courses—thereby improving productivity and reducing burnout or frustration stemming from excessive training. Smart Scheduling For businesses that rely on synchronous learning—rather than just asynchronous content like slides or pre-recorded video—choose an LMS that offers smart scheduling. These tools make it easier to find times that work for large training groups and offer more flexible scheduling options that don’t interfere with employee productivity. Security Protocols Security may not be the first thing that comes to mind when choosing an LMS, but it’s important to choose an option that will protect employee data and your business’ valuable proprietary information. For example, you can increase security by choosing a single-tenant LMS that can only be accessed by your team rather than a multi-tenant option that hosts multiple clients. Pros & Cons of an LMS LMSs are a great tool for training and development. They allow for easily tracking and managing training sessions, as well as providing easy access to past sessions for review. LMSs can also be used to distribute training materials and recordings, prompting participants to revisit training materials during or after the session. However, there are also some cons to using an LMS that should be considered before making the investment. Who an LMS Is Right For In the business context, LMSs are generally aimed at simplifying training, but there are certain businesses that will benefit more from the technology than others. Businesses likely to benefit from an LMS are those: Operating in a highly regulated industry that requires regular training and certification renewal Requiring employees to participate in corporate training videos during onboarding and beyond Relying on a large remote workforce that can benefit from having an LMS with scheduling and tracking tools Providing training products to customers, especially via client-specific login credentials Every business is unique, and your company may benefit from an LMS even if it doesn’t fit into one of the categories above. LMSs may also be a good option for business owners who want to: Streamline the administration of companywide training and certification requirements Provide a more consistent training experience across all employees Track employee-specific training progress and generate reports to illustrate educational milestones Meet training requirements imposed by law or industry-specific regulations Reduce employee education-related expenses by limiting travel, optimizing efficiency, and eliminating expensive overlap that can stem from disorganized training Top LMS Platforms The top LMS platforms offer something unique for each business, such as industry compliance, new hire training, and performance management. Choosing the right platform depends on the factors listed above. We recommend that you consider from the following: : Best overall employee training software : Best for industry compliance : Best for onboarding/new hire training : Best for supporting employees in multiple locations and languages : Best for performance management and testing Bottom Line Whether you’re a small, heavily regulated business or a large company with extensive onboarding materials, an LMS can help you organize and administer the resources necessary to meet your goals. Beyond just training your employees, you’ll also gain insight into how education requirements can impact performance, well-being, and overall job satisfaction. If you’re considering an LMS, take time to evaluate your needs and research providers before signing up for a paid platform.
May 19, 2022
13 Employee Theft Statistics You Should Know in 2022
No matter how much time and money you spend strengthening your company culture and investing in your people, your business may still be affected by employee theft—of money, of confidential data, of time. Understanding this issue is key to combating or even preventing it. Use the employee theft statistics and trends discussed below to learn where your business may be at risk, how much employee theft could cost your business, and, most important, what you can do to lessen its impact. General Employee Theft Statistics 1. 57% of fraud cases are employee-related Fraud that involves an employee (whether working on their own or with an external party) represents over half of the fraud cases an organization experiences, according to a 2020 PwC report. Middle management are slightly more likely to be involved due to their knowledge of internal systems and controls combined with their relationships with a vast array of employees. 2. Fewer than 30% of organizations strongly agree they’ve implemented or upgraded technology to detect fraud A variety of challenges stand in the way of organizations adopting the proper technology to combat fraud. These include financial costs, human resources, and lack of technological expertise. 3. 22% of small business owners have had employees steal from them In an anonymous survey of 700 small business owners, 22% claimed that employees have stolen from them. Money, time, and electronics are some of the most stolen items. 4. Almost half of reported frauds happen within four departments Most employee theft tends to happen in departments that have access to financial-related information like invoices, payroll, financial statements, and sales forecasts. Operations accounts for 15% of cases, followed by Accounting (12%), Sales (11%), and Executive/Upper Management (11%). 5. An employee theft incident costs retailers 3x as much as a shoplifting incident According to the 2021 National Retail Security Survey from the National Retail Federation, the average loss per employee theft incident for retailers is more than $1,500 compared to $460 per shoplifting incident. Half of the survey respondents reported an average dollar loss of at least $1,000 per employee theft case. 6. 88% of employee theft cases include attempts to hide the fraud Since employees are more likely to commit theft when they believe they can hide their misdeeds, securing your documents and having a separation of duties can go a long way in theft detection and theft deterrence Risk-specific Statistics on Employee Theft Listed below are some statistics that may help you uncover which theft your company is more likely to be more susceptible. 7. Billing and noncash fraud represent 38% of employee theft cases Billing theft can include an employee inflating invoice prices to customers, submitting an invoice for non-work items, or completing false invoices. Noncash theft can include inventory theft like merchandise or data theft like passwords and user identification. These two items represented the two largest risk categories in the Association of Certified Fraud Examiners’ Report to the Nations study. 8. Small businesses are more likely to deal with check and payment tampering and skimming than other businesses Small businesses are more susceptible to employee theft than larger businesses in two areas: check and payment tampering and skimming. This can be a result of one employee performing multiple roles with no oversight, lack of internal controls, or a high level of employee trust within the organization. 9. Over 70% of data breaches include an employee abusing their data privileges According to a recent Data Breach Investigation report by Verizon, most employees who steal employer data are doing so for financial gain. They are also most likely to steal personal data over all other types of data types. 10. 40% of internal data breaches take years to uncover vs just 10% of data breaches in general Data breaches that involve an insider (i.e., an employee, business partner, or subcontractor) take much longer to discover and get to the root cause than phishing exhibitions done by outside parties. Employee Theft Prevention & Mitigation Statistics With all of the information about the seriousness and frequency of employee theft, you may feel like there is not much that a company can do. Fortunately, there are multiple steps that an organization can take to protect itself. 11. Nearly 60% of companies that conducted an investigation ultimately ended up in a better place One of the best ways to combat fraud is actually conducting a full investigation—figure out why the problem happened, discipline the offending employees, and bolster your company’s policies and procedures. According to the 2020 PWC Global Economic Crime and Fraud Survey, only about 50% of organizations complete the step of going through an investigation. 12. 42% of employee theft is detected by tips Employees are more likely to detect theft by fellow co-workers than any other company stakeholder. Creating a system for employee tip reporting (via email, web, or phone); conducting company training to encourage whistleblowing; and building healthy dialogue between employees, management, and leadership can go a long way to help detect theft. 13. Companies that invest in fraud prevention tend to spend 42% less money on fraud response Unfortunately, companies cannot be completely protected against fraud, but having a dedicated fraud prevention program can save your business money even when fraud is committed. Beyond the more than 40% savings in fraud response, companies with a dedicated fraud prevention program saved money in remediation efforts and in fines and penalties. Bottom Line Employee theft, and theft in general, can be a concerning topic for many organizations and their leaders. With the statistics covered above, you can provide a strong case to implement theft prevention measures like security cameras, inventory controls, an employee tip hotline, cybersecurity software, and employee background checks. An understanding of the issue and implementation of these measures can help protect your business and lessen the impact of employee theft at your workplace.
May 18, 2022
How to Develop a Diverse Recruiting Strategy for Your Small Business
A diverse recruiting strategy is when businesses actively recruit a wide variety of candidates—and ultimately hire from that pool to create a diverse workforce, which translates to a business that allows for more innovation, creativity, and a better understanding of customer needs. Here, we’ve outlined steps to help you craft a diverse recruiting strategy that touches every aspect of your recruiting process, from your employer brand to interviewing to new hire onboarding. 1. Ensure That Your Company Brand Mirrors Diversity It is important that your company and employer brands reflect diversity. A statement on how diversity in the workforce is important to your business and makes your team successful should be accessible on your website. Meanwhile, diversity in your company mission statement and core values should represent everyone that works for the company. This is important because it shows that the company values all and wants to include them in its success. Including diversity in your mission statement and core values can also help increase the number of people who apply to work for your company, which will make it more likely that you will find the best employees. 2. Use Inclusive Language in Hiring Communications Employers can show they are open to hiring a wider range of applicants and creating a more inclusive workplace through inclusive language. This means using words and phrases that avoid bias, local colloquialisms (such as slang), and expressive language that discriminates against certain groups of people. It’s more than just stating that your company prevents discrimination in the workplace—when communications are written in a way that is inclusive of all, it sends a message that the company respects the individual experiences of existing and potential employees. Your recruitment, hiring, and initial onboarding practices set the tone for the entire hiring team—making a strong defense against discrimination and highlighting inclusivity as essential for collective, organizational success. 3. Post to Diverse Job Boards Part of advertising your job openings involves where you post your recruitment ads. Traditional job boards, like , , and are all really good recruitment vehicles to use. However, if you are focused on building a diverse workplace, you have to include culture-, gender-, and at times race-specific resources to put your opportunities in front of the audience that you are attempting to court. Consider posting on diversity job boards, like: - caters directly to military veterans in transition - will help you find talented workers among people with disabilities - has a talent pool of minorities, females, veterans, and people with disabilities - specializes in job ads for students and alumni of Historically Black Colleges and Universities (HBCU) According to Glassdoor, 76% of job seekers say that a company with a diverse workforce is a deciding factor when evaluating companies and job offers. 4. Practice Blind Resume Reviewing Biases are not always explicit or intentional—many are subconscious. Therefore, we recommend the practice of blind resume screening. This involves limiting identifying factors about the candidate (including their name, college or university names, graduating year, or photos). This practice can be easily accomplished by blacking out any identity-specific information on the resume, CV, and cover letter. If the interviewing process moves through HR to your hiring supervisor, then this stage can be managed by the HR team. Once blinded, the resume would pass to the supervisor who views only skills, experience, and overall fit for the job. 5. Standardize Your Interview Questions Standardizing interview questions for diversity is important to avoid potential discrimination. By having a set of questions that are common across different interviews, companies can ensure that they are asking all candidates the same questions, while avoiding potentially discriminating topics. When interviewing candidates, it is important to ask questions related only to the job seeker’s skills and experience. Additionally, there are questions that you should avoid asking, especially illegal interview questions—those that are related to age, race, and gender. If you are performing pre-employment assessments for candidates during the interview process, be sure you utilize the same testing for all candidates that apply to a particular position. All candidates for a job class should be tested utilizing an appropriate tool for the job that they are being considered for (e.g., a math or basic accounting principles test for finance-related positions). Without any regard to personal traits or background, candidates answer questions that either further qualifies them or removes them from the process altogether. 6. Inject Diversity Into Your Onboarding Program Once you have hired your new team member, your onboarding process needs to start with the full welcome of your organization, which should include the mission or core beliefs of the organization. Remind your new hires immediately that your company is made of diverse and dynamic team members, which is the key to the organization’s success. One way to successfully make this important impression is for HR and senior leadership to spend time with new employees. They should address how diversity within teams, departments, leadership, and locations (if your company has multiple sites) is cultivated, specifically to balance the workforce and bring the best, most creative ideas and concepts to the table for consideration. However, be sure that your diversity is genuine. If your attempt at creating a diverse work team and brand is only for surface or disingenuous reasons, don’t bother. Once employees and customers realize you are not sincere they are likely to leave the company. Why a Diversity Recruiting Strategy Is Important Businesses that employ a diverse workforce are more likely to be successful in the future. By implementing diversity recruiting, companies can benefit from the following: Attracting and hiring individuals with unique perspectives and experiences Being better equipped to address varied customer needs and challenges Being able to tap into new markets and grow their customer base Reducing workplace incidents and lawsuits Encouraging collaboration and productivity Fostering an inclusive environment for employees Bottom Line A diverse recruiting strategy is important for organizations’ success because it can lead to innovation and a more accurate reflection of the customer base. By targeting a wider range of candidates, organizations can find the best talent for their specific needs. Additionally, a diverse workforce can help to create a more inclusive environment for employees.
May 18, 2022
2022 7shifts Review: Is It Right for Your Business?
is a cloud-based scheduling software designed specifically for restaurants, but its features make it a good choice for a wide range of industries. You can use 7shifts for rules-based scheduling, templates, manager log books, group communications, shift swapping, and more. Its higher plans also allow autoscheduling and forecasting. It offers a free plan, and paid options start at $34.99 per month, per location. What We Recommend 7shifts For We reviewed 7shifts specifically for restaurant scheduling software, but when comparing it to the many other schedulers and time trackers we’ve researched, we can recommend it for other businesses as well. It integrates with payroll and popular POS systems, has a robust work-hour rules-setting feature, and features great guides for a new or experienced user. We particularly recommend it for: Large restaurants and restaurants with franchises: 7shifts was built with restaurants in mind. Its features, from the health screening to the task lists and manager logbook, address the needs of a busy restaurant. We gave it 4.35 out of 5 stars in our guide to the best restaurant scheduling software and apps. Retail, amusement parks, and other businesses that hire minors: 7shifts has tools for setting work-hour limitations that are very useful when dealing with minors, who may have more work-hour restrictions than other employees. Businesses that require close supervision and paper trails: Whether you need to keep up with health codes or have projects where steps must be logged with evidence, 7shifts’ manager logbook and task management features can help you keep records, track trends, and uncover issues. When 7shifts Might Not Be a Good Fit If you have more than 20 staff and the free plan is not sufficient for your needs, there are providers that offer less expensive by-employee plans—and has just that. You may also want to check out , which has a free plan that offers great scheduling and communications tools. If you have several locations but not a lot of staff, then we recommend , a provider that earned the top spot in several of our employee scheduling buyer’s guides. It has excellent scheduling and time clock tools, even in the free version, and offers compliance, hiring, and some basic HR functions. 7shifts Alternatives At-a-Glance 7shifts Pricing 7shifts offers a very basic free plan with limited features and a limit of 30 employees; its paid plans have a 14-day free trial. 7shifts charges by location rather than by employee, so it can be cost-effective if you have a large workforce; however, it limits the number of people on each plan. *Annual pricing available at a discount. Very large franchises with multiple locations can get custom pricing with the Gourmet Plan, which includes everything in The Works plus task management, operations overviews, machine-learning autoscheduler, training support, and more. Add-ons 7Shifts knows that sometimes you need a specific function but don’t want to pay extra for items you don’t need. Thus, it has an a la carte menu of features you can add to any paid plan. 7shifts Features 7shifts makes it easy to get started. In addition to loading company information and employees, you can add labor settings for overtime and breaks and even designate jurisdictions where there are additional labor laws. 7shifts has default compliance rules set for New York, California, San Francisco, Philadelphia, and DC, so you don’t have to research them. You can designate your POS system, and there is a tab in the setup for APIs in case you have other third-party tools you want to integrate with. 7shifts Ease of Use Intuitive interface Capterra awards for ease of use Fully-featured mobile app AI scheduler available Video and illustrated how-to articles Support via email, chat, and phone This app won the Best Ease of Use award from Capterra in the categories of employee scheduling software, restaurant management software, and scheduling software in 2020. It has an intuitive interface and even lets you create schedules on the mobile app. It’s easy to see employee availability, send out manager or employee requests for shift swapping, and view hours worked. Unfortunately, the machine-learning autoscheduler is only available with the highest-tier Gourmet plan. The knowledge base is full of illustrated articles to walk you through processes and functions. There are also videos, templates, guides, and more. However, live support is via ticket only. What Users Think About 7shifts This is one of several scheduling apps that users rave about, especially in the past year or so. The user interface earned a lot of praise on 7shifts reviews, and in fact, it has won multiple awards from Capterra for ease of use. Complaints were mild and were either about the mobile app having issues (which were few and far between) or a request for more robust features in the less expensive plans. Capterra: 4.7 out of 5 based on 800+ reviews G2: 4.6 out of 5 based on 50+ reviews TrustRadius: 9.3 out of 10 based on 10 reviews Bottom Line 7shifts is a scheduling software designed for restaurants, but it can work for any business needing a scheduler and time clock that can set work-hour rules, post shift notes, and send communications. With advanced plans and add-ons, it’s also great for task management and forecasting. There is a free plan with the most basic features while its paid plans have 14-day free trials.
May 17, 2022
ZipRecruiter vs LinkedIn: Price, Features & What’s Best for Your Business in 2022
ZipRecruiter and LinkedIn are both recruitment platforms that hiring teams can use to find, hire, and connect with candidates. ZipRecruiter is ideal for the mass posting of any job, while LinkedIn is a professional networking platform that makes it easy to connect with high-quality candidates and those who are a good fit for white-collar positions. In this guide, we compared LinkedIn vs ZipRecruiter in-depth to help you determine which recruitment platform is best suited for your business. If you’re looking to find the right hiring solution quickly, consider our recommendations: : Best for growing companies planning to scale and needing a wide job posting reach to hire quickly : Best for businesses wanting access to a large network of qualified professionals and a way to boost their brand When Neither Is a Good Fit If you’re looking for recruitment software that lets you post unlimited jobs for free, then you may want to consider an alternative platform. With Indeed, you can post job listings and search resumes for free. It also offers reasonably priced job advertising tools, enabling you to widen your job posting reach and quickly find qualified candidates for your open roles. : Best for budget-conscious companies hiring for common positions that they need to fill quickly ZipRecruiter vs LinkedIn Side-by-Side Comparison Takeaway: As recruitment platforms, both ZipRecruiter and LinkedIn provide efficient solutions for sourcing candidates. For businesses looking to hire employees quickly, ZipRecruiter is an excellent choice. Aside from letting you post and advertise your open roles on its site, it distributes your job ads to more than 100 job boards. It also provides access to a database of over 25 million resumes. Meanwhile, LinkedIn has several solutions for sourcing talent. This includes Job Posts, where you can post one free job at a time and set a daily budget for promoting it. Job Slots and Recruiter solutions have more advanced features to get new hires including candidate engagement and applicant management tools. When To Use ZipRecruiter vs When To Use LinkedIn Best for Job Seekers: Tied For job seekers, both ZipRecruiter and LinkedIn offer online tools that allow them to look for job opportunities based on their professional interests and location. LinkedIn’s professional networking feature and social feed on current issues in and outside of the workplace makes it great for highly qualified professional jobs, while ZipRecruiter’s niche job posting partners makes finding more specialized jobs quick. Both platforms each have job alerts and one-click apply buttons for faster job applications, including mobile apps (for iOS and Android devices) that enable users to search for jobs and apply to open roles while on the go. Job seekers can access premium job search tools to help them get hired quickly by signing up for LinkedIn’s paid Career plan. For $29.99 per month (when billed annually), job seekers can check who viewed their profile in the last 90 days, see jobs where they are a top applicant, and directly message recruiters and job posters (up to three per month). In addition, job seekers also get interview preparation tools, applicant insights comparing their skills to other candidates, and online video courses that feature in-demand business, creative, and technology skills. Best in Pricing: LinkedIn We choose LinkedIn to be best in pricing because of its more affordable plans. However, what’s best for you will ultimately depend on your hiring needs (specifically the types of positions for which you’re hiring). For some, LinkedIn’s free option may work, while others may need to set a daily budget for postings. This allows you to spend as little or as much as you want, depending on the number of hires you need. However, if your recruiting needs increase or you’re hiring regularly, ZipRecruiter’s solutions may be more suitable. To help you find employees with ease, LinkedIn offers several custom-priced talent solutions—from job posting and hiring tools to dynamic job ads and a company page. Under its hiring tools are the full-featured Linked Recruiter solution and its basic version, Recruiter Lite. While you have to contact LinkedIn to request a quote for its Recruiter solution, the fees for Recruiter Lite are published on its website. Its monthly- and annual-billed plans are priced at $140 per month and $1,440 per year, respectively. With LinkedIn’s job posting solution, LinkedIn Jobs, you can post one job at a time for free. This job post is searchable on LinkedIn and appears in search results. As soon as your job posting receives a certain number of applications, it is automatically paused and removed from the search results. You must promote it to unpause the job. LinkedIn Jobs also has advertising tools that follow PPC pricing and a daily PPC budget. In addition, it has an ATS (named LinkedIn Talent Hub) that features both of the provider’s job posting and recruiting solutions to help you efficiently manage hiring processes. ZipRecruiter offers three monthly plans (Standard, Premium, and Pro) for small and midsize businesses (SMBs), wherein pricing is based on the level of job ad distribution and the number of reusable job slots you need. It has fees that start at $299 per month for a Standard tier with one reusable job post and offers subscription options that are priced on a daily per-usage basis. The fees vary depending on the plan type, wherein standard subscribers are charged $16 per job post daily, while premium subscribers pay $24 per job post daily. Neither provider offers free plans, though they do have free trials. ZipRecruiter has a four-day free trial, whereas LinkedIn gives a one-month free trial for its Recruiter Lite solution. Note, however, that both require a credit card. Not all of ZipRecruiter and LinkedIn’s pricing information are published on their websites, but you can contact their respective sales teams to ask for a quote. Best Company Page Features: LinkedIn ZipRecruiter doesn’t have a company page builder, while LinkedIn has LinkedIn Career Pages, which allows employers to share their open jobs, including information about their business and workplace culture. Available as a separate paid solution, this tool aims to attract and engage qualified candidates to apply to your job posts. You can add photos and videos on your LinkedIn page to show business clients and potential candidates what’s unique about your company. With ZipRecruiter, you don’t get a company page where you can showcase your employment brand. Its platform is focused mainly on creating and sharing job posts, including managing candidates. Best Job Posting & Advertising Tools: ZipRecruiter While both ZipRecruiter and LinkedIn offer job posting and job advertising tools, the former has a wider job ad reach. With a single click, it distributes your open positions to more than 100 job boards (such as Recruit.net, Better Jobs, LiveCareer, JobHero, Adzuna, Hireable, and FlexJobs) and social media platforms. Plus, subscribing to one of its higher tiers provides you with either premium or maximum job ad placements. Meanwhile, LinkedIn lets you advertise job posts on your company page for free but requires you to pay PPC fees to promote them across its platform, in emails, and as mobile push notifications to 600+ million LinkedIn members. What’s great about its job advertising tool, though, is that you can set daily budgets for your campaigns. With ZipRecruiter, you only get that option if you subscribe to its enterprise plan for large businesses. If you need help learning how to advertise your open position, check out our guide on how to post a job ad. Best Job Description Templates & Resume Search: ZipRecruiter ZipRecruiter offers more than 500 customizable job descriptions. With this many templates to choose from, employers and recruiters can easily create job postings for their open roles. In terms of resume search, ZipRecruiter provides unlimited resume searches and previews. However, you have to subscribe to one of its premium plans to access its resume database of over 25 million resumes. If you have a Standard plan, you have to buy resume access credits (starts at $20 per month for 20 views). As for LinkedIn, it technically doesn’t have a resume bank, but you can view a potential candidate’s professional background through the platform’s user profiles. These profiles contain information about the LinkedIn member’s work experience, professional skills, and educational background. You can also use the platform’s search tools to find potential applicants, and then reach out to qualified candidates through its “InMail” messaging solution—provided that you subscribe to one of LinkedIn’s hiring solutions. Best Candidate Matching & Screening Questions: Tied Screening questions make it easier for you to assess whether or not applicants who applied to your job posts meet your basic hiring requirements. Both ZipRecruiter and LinkedIn allow you to add screening questions to your job ads. LinkedIn even lets you incorporate skills assessments into job postings, while ZipRecruiter has a “deal-breaker question” feature, wherein it automatically hides candidates who didn’t answer the question or gave an incorrect response. Both ZipRecruiter and LinkedIn have smart applicant matching tools that recommend qualified candidates who meet your job post’s criteria. The two platforms also learn from your candidate ratings. LinkedIn recommends your job post to professionals within networks that have work credentials matching those of the candidates you rated. ZipRecruiter, on the other hand, sends a pre-written message asking candidates who match your open position to apply for the job. Best for Applicant Management: Tied Both platforms provide online tools to help you manage and track applicants as they move through the recruitment pipeline. Each offers a dashboard where you can sort, review, and rate candidates. You can also integrate third-party ATSes to both LinkedIn and ZipRecruiter. Here are some of the two providers’ partner systems: ZipRecruiter: Bullhorn, Apploi, Pereless Systems, Greenhouse, ApplicantPro, Breezy, MightyRecruiter, JazzHR, Zoho Recruit, ClearCompany, and JobScore LinkedIn: Bullhorn, ClearCompany, Greenhouse, JobScore, iCIMS, JazzHR, JobDiva, SmartRecruiters, Workable, Avature, Dynamics ATS, ADP, and Workday Best in Ease of Use & Customer Support: ZipRecruiter ZipRecruiter and LinkedIn both have platforms that are generally easy to use. They offer smart hiring tools that make posting jobs and finding qualified candidates easier tasks for employers and recruiters. However, in terms of customer support, ZipRecruiter has an edge over LinkedIn since clients can contact customer service via live chat, phone, and email message through its website. It also has a knowledge base that contains FAQs and how-to guides. LinkedIn, on the other hand, only offers live chat support and a help center where you can either access useful guides or submit online queries. If you want to ask other LinkedIn clients questions about the platform, then you can visit its help forum. User Reviews ZipRecruiter: Job seekers and employers who posted online reviews on third-party sites (such as G2 and Capterra) like its user-friendly interface, adding that it enables them to efficiently find jobs and track applicants. On the other hand, some reviewers said that it is a bit pricier compared to similar solutions. LinkedIn: Most of the online feedback for LinkedIn’s talent solutions are positive, wherein users highlighted its candidate search tools and the quality of its talent network as its best features. Meanwhile, others complained about having experienced occasional system bugs and site crashes. How We Evaluated LinkedIn vs ZipRecruiter We evaluated ZipRecruiter vs LinkedIn based on these criteria: Price: We compared pricing structures to check whether or not each provider has transparent fees, free options, and reasonably priced plans for small businesses. Ease of use: Apart from offering online tools that are simple to learn, the best recruiting and job posting sites should be intuitive—making it easy for job seekers and employers to use. Job posting: We looked at both providers’ job posting functionalities, including their job advertising tools and reach. Job seekers: Having access to a platform that can attract job seekers is helpful. In addition to job posting tools, we looked at each providers’ pricing for job seekers, job search tools, mobile accessibility, easy sign up, and application to evaluate how appealing both are to candidates. User reviews: We evaluated customer reviews to find the best option for recruiters and job seekers alike. Bottom Line As with any company looking for efficient recruitment software to use, business owners have to consider several factors, such as budget, hiring needs, and talent acquisition strategies. For most employers, will work well; it’s a general job board that can post ads to more than 100 job sites (some niche options). While its fees may not be the cheapest in the market, it offers several plans—some of which include pay-per-post options. It also has a free trial. If you’re certain you will be hiring for more highly-qualified positions and need to build your employer brand, we recommend . It has a range of hiring and recruiting solutions plus you can post a single job for free. It also has a solid “InMail” messaging tool that lets you contact passive candidates whose professional skills and work experience fit your hiring requirements, giving you access to top talent you wouldn’t otherwise be able to connect with.
May 16, 2022
ExcelPayroll Review: Is It Right for Your Business in 2022?
is a free payroll solution designed to help small businesses and nonprofits (especially those with 10 or fewer employees) accurately pay their workers. It utilizes Microsoft Excel to perform payroll processes such as calculating amounts for tax withholdings, deductions, and payments. What We Recommend ExcelPayroll For Using ExcelPayroll, you can calculate payroll for small businesses and small nonprofits. Once payroll is calculated, you can print checks, share data with accounting software, and create simple reports. Because the data produced is Excel-based, it’s shareable with popular accounting solutions. In short, ExcelPayroll is best for: Nonprofits, small companies, and educators looking for free payroll processing software: This software is free to use and includes the essential tools to run basic payroll. It’s not intended for large organizations, and we don’t recommend it for companies with more than 10 employees. Microbusinesses using Excel for payroll calculations: Because ExcelPayroll is based on the Microsoft Excel program, the transition would be easy if you’re familiar with the software. The tools are just more structured and have a higher level of automation than you would get using manual spreadsheets. When ExcelPayroll Would Not Be a Good Fit Companies with more than 10 employees: Businesses with more than just a handful of employees would benefit from a more complete solution with HR tools, benefits, and payment options. Check out our best payroll software guide for more options. Growing companies that are in an active hiring phase: This software does not include hiring support such as recruiting, applicant tracking, onboarding, training, and HR document management. For more suitable options, check out our top HR information system (HRIS) software picks. Businesses paying executive-level salaries: ExcelPayroll doesn’t support paying a single employee more than $458,300 in a year. If anyone on your payroll earns more than that amount, you’ll need a different service. Read our guide on the best payroll services for a list of other services you should consider. Restaurants paying tipped employees: ExcelPayroll doesn’t support paying an hourly rate less than $7.50, so restaurants with tipped workers won’t find this useful. The federal tipped minimum wage is much less, $2.13 an hour. Check out our restaurant payroll software guide if you need other options. If you need help deciding which payroll solution is best, check out our guide on how to choose the right payroll provider. ExcelPayroll Pricing ExcelPayroll is free to download and use. Its features include payroll and tax calculations, printable tax forms, PTO accruals management, and a time card tool for tracking job costs and employee work hours. It also allows you to manually update tax tables, although you can opt to purchase its tax update service. ExcelPayroll’s pricing for state tax table updates is $50 per state, except for Alabama and New York, which cost $100. Given that ExcelPayroll designed its pay processing solution for small business and nonprofit use, it placed several plan requirements and system limitations. If you don’t meet these requirements or exceed the limits, then you can’t use its free payroll solution. Number of employees (for payroll): Up to 50 active employees Number of employees in timecard: Up to 57 active employees Minimum hourly pay rate: $7.50 per employee Maximum hourly pay rate: $4,807 per employee Maximum annual salary: $458,300 per employee Number of payroll transactions: 3,640 in a year For nonprofit organizations, ExcelPayroll can adjust some of its limitations if you need to run more than 3,640 payroll in a year or have more than 57 active employees for its timecard solution. Contact the provider to discuss your requirements. ExcelPayroll Features ExcelPayroll is a simple payment processing tool. It helps small organizations calculate payroll for a small group of employees. It is free, making it a good option for those trying to avoid buying expensive software or committing to a monthly agreement. While it does not process direct payments, it saves organizations money by providing simple check printing for free. Let’s look at some of its essential features. ExcelPayroll Ease of Use No software installation required Similar to using an Excel spreadsheet Calculates deductions and withholding Allows you to print paychecks in-house Full instructions included ExcelPayroll can be challenging to use if you’re new to Microsoft Excel and doing payroll. Even if you are adept at handling both, navigating through and using its features can be a bit difficult mainly because it entails a lot of manual entries. This can be a source of potential errors, such as incorrect time and pay data, and might impact payroll security. It also lacks tax filing services, HR tools like onboarding, and an employee self-service portal, which would have made managing payroll easier for you. Plus, it doesn’t automatically update the tax tables to the current year's tax rates—you have to do this yourself (either by manually uploading a new tax table or inputting the new tax rates into the system). Despite these shortcomings, ExcelPayroll is a good solution to use if you have basic pay processing requirements and only have a handful of employees. Since it is Microsoft Excel-based, it integrates with any product Excel is compatible with. It can also be used to share information with popular accounting software such as QuickBooks. What Users Think About ExcelPayroll As of this writing, there are no ExcelPayroll reviews available on popular review sites such as G2 and Capterra. However, since this payroll software is free, you can download it and test it for yourself, provided you have Microsoft Excel software installed on your computer. Top ExcelPayroll Alternatives If you’re unsure ExcelPayroll is right for you, see how it compares with other top free payroll systems. You may also be interested in our article on doing payroll in Excel, which includes a free template and video guide. Bottom Line is not designed to support large businesses that require complex HR and payroll tools, such as hiring assistance, direct deposit payments, and performance management. It targets small business owners with experience in Microsoft Excel who need a simple upgrade from a pen-and-paper payroll system. It has all the essential tools for calculating wages, paying employees via check, and generating the required tax forms. Best of all, it is free to use—provided you have 50 or fewer active employees (we recommend it for businesses with no more than 10 employees, however). Set up your company account and enjoy free payroll processing. Download ExcelPayroll today.