One of the most time consuming aspects of running a business is payroll processing. Although it may sound simple to compute the hours an employee works and cut them a check, the fact is that there are many other aspects to payroll processing that many business owners do not consider. These include payroll taxes, wage garnishments, labor regulations regarding hours and breaks as well as making sure payroll is executed and issued in a timely manner. The team at TMD Accounting offers these tips for simplifying your payroll processes.
Budget for Payroll
One of the biggest mistakes business owners make, according to small business accounting services, is not budgeting for their payroll costs. Keep in mind that payroll involves more than just paying your staff. You will need to have enough budgeted to not only cover employee salaries, but also withholding taxes that must be submitted to the Internal Revenue Service, your state, and your local government quarterly. What many new business owners don’t understand is that although your employee has FICA and Medicare tax withdrawn from their checks, as an employer you are also required to match those amounts. Therefore, you want to be sure that your budget includes the salary plus the taxes you will be required to submit.
Consider a Separate Bank Account
Although you are able to pay your staff from your main business account, using a separate account for payroll may help make your cash flow more transparent. When your company is growing, this can help you budget more easily. It will also help you keep better track of your payroll taxes, the cost of the benefits you offer as well as other deductions you may need to withdraw from your employee’s payroll checks.
Choose a Payday and Stick with It
Your employees expect to receive a paycheck at regular intervals and while there are pros and cons to the various time periods you use for payroll, whether it is weekly, bi-weekly, twice a month or monthly, once you decide when payroll will be issued, small business accounting services suggest you stick with that schedule. Keep in mind that the more often you pay your employees, the more you will need to track your withholdings which is why many employers use the bi-weekly or twice monthly methods for payroll says a South Jersey accountant.
Salary or Hourly?
One of the most frequently asked questions when people ask “is an account for my small business necessary” is whether paying employees a salary or paying them hourly is the best option. This may depend on the business you are in as well as what each employee does. In most cases, management will be placed on salary as their duties are more complex. Paying hourly requires a bit more work as you will need a method to track each employee’s hours every pay period. If you outsource your payroll to small business accounting services, they often have mechanisms in place that will track your employee hours for you.
Use Direct Deposit
Research indicates that more than 80 percent of all Americans are paid via direct deposit, and this is one of the best ways to streamline your payroll services. Direct deposit allows you to review reports before you transfer funds to your staff. There is no need for stacks of checks that need to be signed, envelopes to keep payroll private concerns about lost checks or any of the other issues that you face when you issue paper checks.
Another critical error many business owners make is not having policies in place for their employees and this is especially true of payroll. When you hire a new employee, there will be documents they need to provide, including copies of Social Security cards, filling out a W9 form as well as any benefit paperwork. Consider issuing a payroll policy that has time sheet deadlines, information about taking sick or vacation time, reimbursement for business expenses and more. You and the employee should sign the policy with a copy given to the employee as well as one in their personnel file.
Set Up Reminders
It is likely your employees will not be pleased if you forget to pay them, and it will be difficult to retain staff if you consistently make mistakes in their paychecks. Although using a South Jersey accountant will help prevent these errors, you can also make sure things are done in a timely fashion by setting reminders for yourself. These may simply be a reminder to submit approved forms in time for checks to be issued or one so that you remember quarterly taxes must be submitted.
Electronic Tax Filing
The IRS offers the option to file payroll taxes rather than mail in forms and a check. It is likely your state and local governments offer that as well. This helps eliminate the risk of payments arriving late and helps you remain compliant with the law. Usually, you will receive an instant confirmation that your payment was received which you can file for your records.
If you are asking “will an accountant for my small business help with payroll,” the answer is yes. TMD Accounting has been offering accounting services for more than 40 years as a family-owned and operated South Jersey accountant. Contact our team today about your payroll needs by calling 1-856-228-2205 or fill out the easy online contact form.