Knowing the true cost of an employee is one thing, but if you’re not including the cost of overhead in your equation, you could be under-billing your clients and losing money! Knowing how to accurately calculate the cost of overhead for each employee will help you determine what to charge and how to remain profitable.
Overhead represents the average cost of benefits per employee. These include all the expenses you pay outside of labor costs — things like building costs, property taxes, and utilities — and they can be calculated either monthly or annually, depending on the needs of your business. To figure it out, just divide your total annual overhead costs by the number of employees at your business.
Want to determine your employee’s billable rate? Take the true cost of your employee per hour (including employee labor costs, overhead, and taxes) and add it to your profit margin. Then divide this number by the number of hours your employee works per year, and you’ve got your billable rate. No more lost profits!
As a business owner, you’re required to pay taxes for the Federal Insurance Contributions Act (FICA), which covers Social Security and Medicare, and the Federal Unemployment Tax Act (FUTA), which funds workforce agencies. On top of that, there are unemployment taxes, which vary by state but can include state income taxes and unemployment insurance.
The Federal Unemployment Tax Act (FUTA) sets your unemployment tax rate per employee at 6 percent, but if you qualify, you can claim a 5.4 percent credit. That would make your FUTA tax rate .6 percent. However, once an employee’s year-to-date earnings surpass $7,000, you no longer have to pay the FUTA federal unemployment tax on that employee for the remainder of the year.