Issue: Web-based payroll services for small businesses offer more features than ever, and at better prices.
Benefit: Save HR time and cut your administrative costs.
Action: Look into the vendors cited below, but ask the right questions so you don't "overbuy" or "underbuy" for your needs.
Many Web-based payroll services for small businesses now include HR features. Examples:
- Paychoice offers a payroll service that also tracks sick time, training history, I-9 citizenship information and military status. Go to www.paychoice.com/paychoiceproduct.html.
- Paychex Online also handles workers' compensation and 401(k) plans. Go to www.paychex.com/owners/onetofortynine.html.
- Payroll processing giant ADP offers separate payroll and HR packages for businesses with fewer than 50 employees. The separate HR offerings include benefits,
- ADP also combines its payroll and HR products as part of Business One, a small business accounting and sales service offered online by SAP America. Find details at www.sap.com/solutions/ smb/businessone.
Before buying, find out if the service works for your firm by asking vendors:
1. How detailed is the payroll report that the service generates? Can you view the data by each individual employee?
2. How is the service updated to keep current with changing laws and regulations?
3. How can the service handle payroll for a changing combination of full-time, part-time and temporary employees?
4. What provisions do you make for data backup?