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Level 1

Can I automate payroll for salary employees?

8 Comments 8
QuickBooks Team

Can I automate payroll for salary employees?

I'm happy to see you here in the Community, @mike273.


Yes, you can automate payroll for your employee's salary in QuickBooks Online. I'd be pleased to walk you through how to do that.


With QuickBooks Online Payroll Core, Premium, or Elite, you have the option to run your payroll automatically. All you have to do is to complete the payroll set up if this is the first time that you've utilized payroll. 


After that, you'll need to set your employees to a salaried one. If you have an hourly employee, you must set up default hours for them. Just a reminder that if you have commission-only employees, you won’t be able to turn on Auto Payroll. For contractors, you'll need to pay them manually.



To set the default hours:

  1. Click on Payroll at the left pane an choose Employees.
  2. Look for the hourly employee and click on the pencil icon beside Pay.
  3. Enter the number of hours per day and the days worked in the How much do you pay this employee? section. 
  4. Hit on Done.

When you run payroll you’ll see a message confirming that the system filled in default hours, and we’ll highlight the hours we’ve filled in: 


Once done, you can now turn on the Auto Payroll option from your payroll settings.


Here's how:

  1. Click on the Gear icon at the top.
  2. Select on Payroll Settings
  3. In the Auto Payroll box, turn on the Auto Payroll toggle.
  4. Press on Save.

From there, each pay period, look for an email with the subject Your QuickBooks Auto Payroll preview. This shows the total amount of your payroll and number of employees paid.


If you need to make changes to your employees or payroll, see Manage or change something in Auto Payroll. The deadline to make the changes is listed in your email.


To give you complete details about this process, you may scan through this article: Use Auto Payroll to pay your employees.


My doors are always open to help if you have any other question, @mike273. Feel free to reach back to me by leaving a reply below. Take care!

Level 1

Can I automate payroll for salary employees?

Thank you for your response. How do I know if I have QuickBooks Online Payroll Core, Premium, or Elite and not another version?

Level 1

Can I automate payroll for salary employees?

I do not see an automatic payroll option in the payroll settings.

QuickBooks Team

Can I automate payroll for salary employees?

Greetings, @mike273.


You can view your account's subscription type within your QuickBooks account. I can guide you on how to do it.

  1. Go to the Gear icon.
  2. Choose Account and Settings.
  3. Select the Billing & Subscription menu. 

From here, you can see the type of payroll subscription that you have. Also, the Auto Payroll feature is available to all payroll subscriptions.  


On the other hand, you can see the Auto Payroll option once you have completely set up your employees and company information. Here are the other factors to consider:

  • All employees are salaried employees
  • All employees are set up on direct deposit, bank verification, e-services are enabled.
  • All employees are located in the same state and the company is not a multi-state company.
  • The account has not been on hold in the last 6 months. 

You can follow the steps on how to enable the Auto Payroll shared by my colleague, @BettyJaneB.


Swing by here if you have other questions about processing payroll in QuickBooks. I'm always here to help.

Level 1

Can I automate payroll for salary employees?

Thank you for your previous response. None of the options you have listed below match what I see on my screen. It says I have QBFSP at a rate of $99 per month. Can you explain the difference between that and what you have listed below?

QuickBooks Team

Can I automate payroll for salary employees?

Hi there, mike273. 


Thank you for dropping by the Community, more than likely, you're seeing a different rate because the image used by colleague was a generic price. QuickBooks offers sales and deals on a regular basis, meaning the prices change. Sometimes there's a 50% off for 3 months, other times there's a 1 month free deal. This changes often and without being able to dive into your personal account as the Community is a public forum setting, I can't tell you exactly what deal or plan you're currently on. But don't worry, you can reach out to our support team, either by way of Instant Messenger or the Call me back feature. They will be able to look through your account with you in a private, 1-on-1 setting and tell you all the details you'd like. To reach them you can follow these steps:

  1. Sign in to your QuickBooks Online company.
  2. Go to Help (?).
  3. Select Contact Us.
  4. Enter your concern, then select Let's talk.
  5. Choose a way to connect with us:
    • Start a chat with a support expert.
    • Get a callback from the next available expert.

For a fast track to the Instant messaging support team for payroll, you can check out this link:

I'm also including a helpful article that highlight's which payroll service you have, just in case you aren't 100 percent sure. 

If you have any other questions, feel free to post here in the Community anytime. Thanks and have a nice Wednesday!


Level 3

Can I automate payroll for salary employees?

And what about for Desktop?  Has that been added to Desktop yet?


There are still many of us out there that use Desktop (a FAR superior product) and not the horrible online version.  


And yes, you can use Desktop and STILL access it JUST LIKE ONLINE.  You use a Virtual Desktop.  

Great full power program - with the ease and safely of online access. 


For all those that hate Online - if your bookkeeper hasn't suggested this as an alternative to QBO, they should have.  



Can I automate payroll for salary employees?

The Community has you covered, @SusannaR.


QuickBooks Desktop has a Do it Yourself Payroll namely Basic and Enhanced, the option to automatically create paychecks is currently unavailable. You'll want to create a Direct Deposit paycheck that you can send 45 days in advance. This will still be considered as Pending since Payroll is then offloaded at 5 pm PST, two banking days before the check date. For more info, please see this article: Set up Direct Deposit.


After you processed the direct deposit paychecks, Intuit will debit your bank account 1 banking day prior to the check date. The funds are automatically transferred to your employee's account on the check date.


Also, I've added this wonderful source to give you more information about payroll processing in QuickBooks Desktop: Payroll 101. 


Let me know if you have follow-up questions about the payroll by commenting below. I'm always right here to help. Have a good one. 

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