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How to Choose a Perfect Payroll Provider?

Recently with the acceleration of international enterprises expansion to china, payroll outsourcing becomes ubiquitous. "How to choose a professional provider to outsource your payroll" should be considered in the first place, especially when company policies change, employees change, as do their family situations and their payroll distributions. A single mistake with any of those issues can lead to serious and significant implications for the company.

Here are some factors to consider when selecting a payroll provider.

1. Qualifications: How long has the provider been in business?

This is critical as it is an indicator of a company's stability. You don't need to look too far these days to find a business that has been victimized by a payroll service firm that walked away with significant sums of money, leaving that business to answer to its employees and the IRS.

2. Experience: To what degree does the provider specialize in payroll? Does the firm dedicate its time to payroll, or does it simply offer payroll as an optional feature beyond its primary focus? You should also ensure that the provider's employees hold recognized qualifications from the Institute for Payroll and Pensions.

3. Specialization: Look for a provider that has previous experience in the construction sector, so you can be confident that your payroll team is ready for the specific challenges of your industry. The company should also have experience in a broad range of industries, allowing the provider to continually improve its service offerings.

Some of the specific offerings that a construction business may require are:

Job costing: Look for a system that is three-tiered, so employers can track labor to a specific division, department and job code. This system can assist in billing and invoicing, as well as internal reporting.

Certified payroll reports: Check to see if the payroll provider can produce certified payroll reports based on the payroll and human resources information entered into the system. These reports eliminate extensive manual calculations and hours of entering the same data into two or more systems.

Flexible time and attendance tracking: Does the provider use software for web-based time and attendance, enabling real-time job tracking from any internet-enabled computer? Look for portable time clocks that can be installed at worksites, in a truck or on an equipment trailer. With these time clocks, labor, departmental and job costs can be tracked in real time, even if a project is in a remote location.

4. Service: You will communicate regularly with your payroll provider. Look for one that offers a high level of personalized customer service. You want to deal with someone who has a real understanding of your business and its challenges, not some random sales representative. Make sure the provider offers support each day-not only on the days payroll is processed. Too many questions arise on those other days that will need immediate attention.

5. Features: Ensure that the provider uses software that is fully capable of delivering the services you desire. What are its basic features and what are some of the additional features you may want to consider? If you want your employees to access information online, does the company have an Employee Self-Service program? Are the management reports appropriate and useful for your business?

6. Responsibility: Despite efforts to the contrary, mistakes may eventually be made. Determine who is responsible for penalties due to late or non-filed tax liabilities.

7. Flexibility: The critical point in this relationship is the transmission of information to your provider. A good provider will offer some choice and flexibility in the process, whether reports can be printed, posted to the web or sent in a data file. In addition, how flexible is the provider if something prevents you from transmitting information at a specific time?

8. Security: As much as you need a payroll provider that won't run off with your money, you need to find one that properly secures your money. How is your sensitive data encrypted, and who has access to that information? What type of employee screening process is in place? What type of insurance protection does the provider have? And does the provider "impound" tax payments-moving tax liabilities along with payroll amounts from your account to their prior to due dates.

9. Price: Make sure you understand which services are included in the price you're given and which are additional services. Price comparison is important, but the cheapest option isn't necessarily going to be the most effective. In the end, a cheaper option may end up costing more.

As a business owner, you expect payroll to be a seamless part of your business. If you choose a provider for the right reasons, you'll be happy and your payroll provider will be happy. If not, your relationship is doomed for an ugly-and potentially costly-ending. Take the time to find a provider that delivers exactly what you need.

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