Painless Payroll: 5 Top Tips on How to Streamline Your Payroll Process

Does the payroll process leave you feeling frustrated?

If you’re not naturally a numbers person or don’t have payroll experience, the task can eat up lots of your work time. Payroll takes almost five hours per pay period for many small business owners.

Streamlining payroll process

Streamlining the process helps simplify the tasks to make sure you get everything done while taking less time to do it.

Use these five tips to streamline payroll.

1. Create a Standard Payroll Process

Having a set way to do payroll each time makes the process easier. It also reduces the risk of forgetting a payroll step. Little mistakes can mess up your employees’ pay and create headaches with taxes and benefits.

Create a checklist that details all of the payroll process steps. Follow it each time you process payroll.

If you’re not sure what you should do, work with an accountant to set up your system initially. Once it’s in place, you can follow the checklist yourself.

Create additional checklists for onboarding employees and handling employees who leave the company. Both situations require special steps for handling payroll properly.

2. Use a Paperless System

Are you still recording employee time on paper and printing out paper checks and pay stubs?

Not only are you using more resources than you need to, but your making payroll more complicated.

Going paperless with electronic time tracking, direct deposit, and online pay stubs cuts your office supply costs.

It also makes less work for you.

Direct deposit eliminates the need to print and distribute checks. You also eliminate the hassle of dealing with lost checks.

3. Connect Your Systems

If your employees log their time, choose a system that integrates tracking software with your payroll software.

This eliminates the need to manually enter the hours for each employee into your payroll system. The data transfers automatically. You just need to verify that everything is correct.

It also reduces the risk of errors. Since the system transfers the info, you don’t have to worry about accidentally entering a number incorrectly.

4. Stay Current

It may seem like more work, but staying current on tax and payroll regulations is crucial to making your process easier.

If you don’t follow the guidelines and laws exactly, it creates more work for you. The work has to be redone to comply with regulations.

It could also cost you money if you make a major mistake.

It’s easier to ensure you understand the regulations than it is to find out too late that you’re doing things the wrong way.

5. Outsource Your Payroll

One of the simplest ways to make payroll easier is by turning it over to someone else.

You have lots of options for outsourcing payroll, including sites such as When you outsource, you let a professional handle payroll, so you don’t have to worry about it.

Outsourcing can improve the accuracy of your payroll. If you don’t feel comfortable with the process yourself, letting an experienced company handle it can give you peace of mind.

You know payroll will get done on time, and you can focus your attention on core business activities.

Get Help With the Payroll

Mastering the payroll process can make your life as an entrepreneur easier. Your employees get paid on time, and you can get back to other business tasks.

Find more advice on how to improve your small business in our archives.


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