Payroll – In House or Outsource?

Posted on Jul 14, 2015

By Miguel Cornejo

Payroll can be a confusing topic for many people, and making sure your employees get paid correctly is critical. Also important is making sure that you’ve collected and paid the appropriate amount in taxes, and that your payroll tax returns are filed both timely and accurately. Here are a few things to consider if you’re handling payroll yourself:

  1. Changing Tax Rates. Unemployment and L&I taxes will fluctuate depending on the amount of unemployment claims filed against your company. Making sure this tax rate is updated and accurate will ensure you’re collecting and paying the appropriate tax amount and help avoid any liability in the event of an audit.
  2. Paying Your Taxes. Due dates for payroll tax payments vary depending on the agency. Knowing when these payments are due can help you avoid any unnecessary penalties and appropriately manage your cash flow.
  3. Filing Requirements. Federal and state agencies require you to file payroll tax returns on either a quarterly or annual basis. You’ll need to know what forms to file, and when. Depending on how many employees you have, you may be subject to the additional reporting requirements of the Affordable Care Act.
  4. Infrequent Items – Things like bonus payments, wage garnishments, employee loan repayments, and owner distributions may not happen regularly, so knowing how these transactions affect your payroll will help you meet your cash flow needs and keep accurate records.

For some, the benefit of having payroll and the accompanying reporting requirements handled by an experienced and dedicated outside provider well outweighs the cost. Fortunately, there are several third-party payroll processing companies available in today’s marketplace that have helped to reduce the price of these services.

Many payroll providers also offer online tools to help you keep an eye on payroll and help your accounting team make sure everything is recorded properly. They also offer various levels of service, from benefits management to retirement plan administration. So as your business develops you’ll have a payroll provider that can help you manage your growth so you can stay focused on your business.

Even if you have some help with payroll, it’s still up to you to make sure that your payroll reporting is timely and correct. You’ll still want to make sure someone in your organization is reviewing timecards, payroll reports and filings provided by the payroll provider to check for accuracy.

While outsourcing payroll to a third-party allows you to spend more time focusing on your business, it’s important to select the right payroll company for you. There are several industries that are unique, so partnering with a payroll provider that understands your industry will help to avoid any problems down the road.

Miguel Cornejo is an Associate in Clark Nuber’s Accounting and Consulting Services Group. Contact Clark Nuber.

For more information about tackling your payroll requirements or how to select your payroll provider, please contact Cindy Doyle, who leads the Clark Nuber Accounting and Consulting Services Group.

© Clark Nuber PS, 2015.  All Rights Reserved

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This article or blog contains general information only and should not be construed as accounting, business, financial, investment, legal, tax, or other professional advice or services. Before making any decision or taking any action, you should engage a qualified professional advisor.

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