4 payroll automation tips for saving time

Payroll is one of many potentially time-consuming administrative tasks that all businesses need to manage. Using payroll automation can help streamline your business’s daily financial processes and save you valuable time.

In addition to providing a centralized system for managing employee wages, software can help you calculate tax deductions, manage HR processes, and ensure your business is legally compliant.

Let’s explore why payroll automation is important for managing your business on a daily basis and how you can use four key automations to streamline your operations.

What is payroll automation?

Payroll automation is software that helps you pay employees correctly and on time. Using payroll software, you can schedule payroll and other financial processes, saving you time, effort, and money.

Automating payroll means HR doesn’t need to spend time on financial processes like processing direct deposits, calculating wages, creating reports, and filing federal, state, and local taxes.

When you integrate payroll automation in-house, your payroll employees won’t need to fret about minor details and can focus their energy on more pressing tasks. Payroll software reduces the risk of possible human error too––it automatically calculates the correct PTO and overtime pay, as well as deductions and commissions that affect an employee’s pay.

Along with these benefits, here are some less obvious advantages of using payroll automation.

1. Track mileage automatically

Mileage can be one of the largest tax deductions for small businesses. But it can also be one of the most time-consuming and complicated elements to accurately track.

Try using QuickBooks automatic mileage as a way of efficiently and accurately recording tax-deductible mileage. Built into QuickBooks, an automatic GPS tracking system uses your phone’s location to detect when you’re driving.

After a journey, easily categorize the trip as personal or business by swiping on your phone. That way, you won’t need to tediously enter business mileage to correctly calculate tax deductions.

When you automate your mileage tracking processes, you’ll help ensure your tax-deductible calculations are as accurate as possible and not subject to human error.

Real-life example: A small consulting business regularly sends its consultants across the state, but needs an easier and more efficient way of tracking mileage. Their current manual payroll process is time-consuming and unorganized. With a goal of streamlining and automating processes, the business adopts QuickBooks and now can automatically track consultants’ tax-deductible mileage.

2. Manage 1099 contractors

Properly managing 1099 contractors is essential for staying compliant with the IRS and paying avoidable penalties. When you pay a contractor for their work, it’s essential to track it on a 1099 form to remain compliant.

With payroll automation, it’s easy to automatically track payments to contractors throughout the year. You can also separate vendor expenses like supplies or equipment rentals. When you keep payments to contractors separate from expenses, it’s much simpler to issue and file accurate 1099 forms for the tax year.

The software will also create ready-to-send 1099 forms during tax season. You can also quickly send an e-file within the software so you don’t need to worry about efficient and secure distribution.

Using payroll automation helps ensure you’re correctly following legal payroll processes with contractors.

Real-life example: A midsize copywriting business uses outsourcing as a solution when they have too much work. By using contractors, they can increase their staffing while still using the same simple, automated payroll system. Better yet, during tax season they can easily automate 1099 forms for easy recordkeeping and tax withholdings.

3. Stay prepared for workers’ compensation claims

Workers’ compensation is a type of insurance that helps protect your employees and you in case of on-the-job injuries. It includes medical expenses as well as wage replacement, and also helps protect you from potential lawsuits.

It’s also legally required in most states, so definitely not something you want to overlook.

The good news is that it’s easy to make workers’ comp a part of your payroll by using payroll automation like QuickBooks.

The all-in-one service helps you learn individual state requirements, get a free quote, and pick a policy that’s right for your business and employees. You won’t need to worry about missing deadlines, either.

Real-life example: A midsize manufacturing facility wants to ensure they’re protecting themselves and their employees in the event of on-the-job injuries. They decide to use their self-service payroll processing technology to purchase their workers’ comp insurance. This helps them avoid headaches, save time, and ensure they’re protected.

4. Manage HR efficiently

Instead of dealing with scattered HR documentation, take care of your HR documents and processes all in one place within your payroll software.

Within QuickBooks, create custom HR documentation like job descriptions, employee handbooks, onboarding checklists, and contracts through presaved templates.

You can also link your payroll software to timesheet providers to record things like employee attendance and overtime. Accurate timekeeping is especially important if your employees receive an hourly wage.

Stay compliant with current information on state and federal wages and overtime laws, while learning the ins and outs of hiring, termination, and other employment legal issues.

You won’t ever doubt your HR policies again, either––a QuickBooks partnership with Mammoth enables you to ask an expert when you have HR questions, free of charge too.

Real-life example: A small business in the food services industry wants to integrate new HR software to save time and replace manual processes. By combining HR software and payroll processing, they’re able to provide employee benefits and human resources services all in one simple payroll solution.

Take advantage of QuickBooks payroll automation

QuickBooks can help you automate otherwise tedious and time-consuming financial and HR tasks. Taking full advantage of all the available payroll automations will help free up your time so you can focus on growing your business. Ready to start streamlining your business processes? Try QuickBooks Payroll today.

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