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Set up Pay Rate Templates

SOLVEDby QuickBooksUpdated November 26, 2021

Learn how to set up pay rate templates to manage employee pay rates in bulk. Some scenarios where using a pay rate template would be useful is:

  • Juniors’ rates increasing on their birthday
  • Apprentices moving to the next year of their apprenticeship
  • Employees switching roles
  • Employees being moved to a higher grade of their award
  • Award rates reviewed annually

Note: If you've installed an Award for your employees, pay rate templates for that award will automatically be created for you - skip to Step 2 to apply them to employees.

Step 1: Create a Pay Rate Template

  1. Select Employees, then select Payroll Settings.
  2. Select Pay Rate Templates under the Pay Conditions section.
  3. Selct Add to create a new pay rate template.
  4. Name your template, and select the primary pay category that this template applies to.
  5. In the pay rates table, enter the rate you want to apply for each category. You don't have to fill up all pay categories.
  6. Select Save when finished.

Step 2: Apply Pay Rate Templates to Employees

  1. Select Employees, then select their name from the employee list.
  2. Select Pay Run Defaults from the left menu, and under the Pay Rate Template section, select the pay rate template from the dropdown menu.
  3. Once a pay rate template is selected, the pay rate and primary pay category for that employee are assigned automatically.
  4. Repeat for all other employees applicable for this pay rate template.

When you change the pay rate from the Pay Rate Template section detailed in Step 1, all employees linked to this pay rate template will have their rates updated as well.

Note: Pay Rate Template changes are effective from the day after the period end date of the most recent pay run the employee has been included in (or the employee's start date if there's no finalised pay run). This date is show on the bottom of the Pay Run Defaults page for that employee.


To help with identifying employees whose pays need to be updated or reviewed on their birthday, run the Employee Birthdays Report:

  1. Select Employees, then select Reports (next to Payroll Settings).
  2. Select Employee Birthdays Report.

This report will tell you which employees are having birthdays within the specified date range so that preparations can be made to adjust their pay rates (and buy birthday cakes!).

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