Payroll is one of those aspects of business that many are reluctant to change, but it's worth evaluating from time to time and this is a good time of year to do it. If you decide to make a change, you have time to be up and running with your new payroll system by the first of the year (or sooner if you want).
Over the years my opinion has changed as to who should handle the payroll tax payments and tax filings. While I have many clients who are competent and can certainly handle payroll, I often find many would be better off doing another aspect of the business. Payroll can be a time-consuming task and mistakes can be costly. 40% of small businesses pay about $850 (many much higher) each year, so you could quickly wipe out any savings from doing it yourself. If Intuit makes the mistake, they pay the penalties and interest. Having Intuit handle your payroll can also help prevent fraud. Having that extra layer of protection is worthwhile for many businesses. So here are the two Intuit products where Intuit handles the tax payments and filings for you.
Intuit Full Service Payroll (IFSP)- For my clients who do not need job costing, I always recommend at least looking at the Intuit Full Service Payroll. With IFSP, you simply enter your hours online and Intuit takes it from there! It's a flat fee per month - doesn't matter how frequently you pay your employees, which is highly unusual. Most payroll services will charge you not only on the number of employees you have, but the frequency as well. Full Service Payroll includes direct deposit, making the tax payments and filing the tax forms. Reports are included and the integration with QuickBooks is seamless (at no extra charge). For many businesses when comparing IFSP to another payroll service, you can't beat the price. And many businesses like having the tax payments taken out of their account when it's due instead of with each payroll. Of course that means setting the money aside, but why not hang onto your cash for as long as you can?!
Intuit recently added the ability to do Classes with IFSP and Job Costing on the account level which makes this product a viable option for many more businesses now!
Intuit Assisted Payroll: If job costing is important to you, my preferred payroll product is still the Intuit Assisted Payroll. Many of the job cost reports pull from the Items list and not the Chart of Accounts. While the Intuit Full Service Payroll will let you do job costing, it's at the Account level and not the Items level. So you still miss out on some of the really good reporting. I've worked with clients who outsource their payroll with a provider other than Intuit and then we have cumbersome workarounds to get the job costing in, which is expensive in terms of manpower and still not as good as if the payroll had been done in QuickBooks. Assisted Payroll is simple to use from within QuickBooks (PC desktop versions only) and Intuit handles the payroll taxes and filings for you. All of your payroll reports are inside QuickBooks and there is no importing or exporting.
But if you still want to do payroll yourself, you have two other options - Intuit Online Payroll (IOP) and the Enhanced Payroll. The advantage of the Intuit Online Payroll is like it sounds - you can do your payroll anywhere you have Internet access and it works with all the QuickBooks products. Enhanced is for PC desktop products only.