How To Pay Small Business Employees and Contractors More Productively

Posted on August 29, 2017

New businesses struggle to make ends meet in almost every situation. Being very touch-and-go from the moment the doors open, small businesses have to operate efficiently if there is any hope of the brand being successful long-term. Many small businesses have historically faced such steep odds that the ability to overcome the pressure from finances, competition and bureaucratic woes was non-existent.

In recent years, however, many new challenges in technology have helped level the playing field for small businesses. From scheduling and customer service to product fulfillment and payment acceptance, countless revolutions have been occurring that have changed the game.

Ultimately, one huge challenge for small businesses is balancing the books and making sure everybody is paid – both on-time and efficiently. Today, let’s walk through some of the most productive solutions out there for small businesses to use when paying employees and contractors alike.

PayPal Mass Payments

By far the most commonly-used payment solution used globally, most people have a PayPal account. With competitive rates and widespread acceptance, many of your employees and contracted laborers would prefer to be paid through this method.

While there are many ways to send money via PayPal, its Mass Pay feature is perfect for small businesses. Not only will you avoid hassling your employees with paper checks that have to be deposited, but you can easily configure the system to pay out specified amounts on a regular basis. This means you won’t have to constantly micro-manage your payments on a weekly or monthly basis except where variable payments are necessary.

This works great from the employee side as well, as there is no charge for the recipient. From the employer’s standpoint, the rates charged are easily competitive with all of the standard payroll processors on the market today. When coupled with a PayPal Debit card, your employees and contractors can also immediately access their money, making it a great way to earn loyalty from people by providing them an efficient and convenient way of being paid.

Square Payroll

One of the first companies to offer mobile payment solutions to both individuals and businesses, Square has made a name for itself in the world of payment processing. It also now offers an excellent way to pay employees and workers through its Square Payroll service.

The company offers all of its clients worry-free payroll compliance, ensuring that all payroll processes are compliant with IRS standards. The service allows employers to import time cards in a matter of seconds, making it easy to calculate amounts owed; through the same functionality, it also provides  paystub generator functionality for those who need physical proof of income.

The interface is great for providing instant payment to employees and contractors, offering user accounts for each person that can be used to configure direct deposit (meaning you no longer have to juggle that task for them). The flexible pricing of Square Payroll also ensures that your rate is determined based on how many employees you have and how much you pay them, rather than a one-size-fits-all bill like many other payroll processors.

Dwolla Bank Transfers

Dwolla’s mass payment solution is quite popular because millions use Dwolla on a daily basis to send and receive money. Especially when working with independent contractors and freelancers, you’ll likely encounter individuals who prefer to be paid through the service.

Even if your employees don’t use Dwolla, their mass payment solution can be a simple and quick way to pay everybody on time. After a business has signed up with Dwolla and verified a bank account, it can be configured for mass payments that are deposited via ACH. Dwolla is one of the few major processors who offer standard same-day ACH deposits to its corporate clients – meaning you can pay at the last minute and still know that your employees won’t be left high and dry.

What makes this solution desirable for many is the lack of transaction fees – whether based on amount or total number of payments. Small businesses looking to save money and cut corners wherever possible will absolutely adore a productive, fee-free system like Dwolla.

QuickBooks Payroll

Intuit’s services are immensely popular among small businesses. From accounting to payment solutions, many brands choose one or more QuickBooks services due to its ease of use, familiarity and excellent customer support.

With QuickBooks Payroll, you can choose to opt in for the standard QuickBooks services along with payroll solutions or merely purchase the payroll service. They have multiple packages available, with pricing affected by whether your business performs the payroll tasks or whether you let Intuit do it for you. Currently, plans start at as little as $20 per month + $5 per month for each employee.

Through QuickBooks Payroll, you’ll have all the options of paying employees that you get with the other services – but you can also seamlessly transfer this information into your tax filings. Custom invoices can be sent and tracked, and all employees’ bank accounts can be synced up to ensure direct deposit runs smoothly.

eSmart Paycheck

Arguably the least known solution on this list, the eSmart Paycheck system provides plenty of benefits to small businesses that want to save money. With a flat subscription fee based on the number of employees a business has, it is never difficult to figure out what costs will await a business each month.

This service not only provides payroll processing, but can provide both direct deposit and physical check issuance depending on the exact preferences of the employee or the company. Relevant tax information can be easily accessed and copied over come filing time. For those running more than one business or who need to keep select payments separate, eSmart Paycheck provides that flexibility.

With so many unique challenges to juggle, small businesses need any break they can find. There is absolutely no reason why payroll issues should cost a fortune or take up copious amounts of time. These productive utilities and solutions will help any small business bring their payroll operations into line, keep their tax information organized and keep both employees and contractors alike happy.


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