Skip to main content

There are countless HR software for payroll solutions available, so figuring out which is best for you is tough. You want to ensure accurate and timely payment, comply with tax laws and regulations, and manage deductions and benefits—but now need to figure out which tool is the best fit. In this post, I make things simple, leveraging my experience as an HR expert who has evaluated dozens of different payroll tools to bring you this shortlist of the best human resources software for payroll.

Why Trust Our Software Reviews

We've been testing and reviewing HR software since 2019. As HR professionals ourselves, we know how critical and difficult it is to make the right decision when selecting software.

We invest in deep research to help our audience make better software purchasing decisions. We've tested more than 2,000 tools for different HR use cases and written over 1,000 comprehensive software reviews. Learn how we stay transparent, and take a look at our software review methodology.

The 10 Best HR Software for Payroll Comparison Chart

This comparison chart summarizes basic details about each of my top HR software for payroll selections. You can view pricing details and the availability of free trials or demos side-by-side to help you find the best payroll software for your budget and business needs.

Tools Price
Deel Flat rate user pricing
Papaya Global EOR from $650/employee/month or $2/contractor/month; Global payroll from $3 to $12/employee/month
Rippling From $8/user/month
Oyster HR From $499/employee/month or $29/contractor/month
Paycor From $5/employee/month + $99/month base fee
Remofirst From $199/employee/month for EOR and $25/mo for contractors
OnPay From $6/employee/month + $40/month base fee
Paychex Flex From $39/month + $5/employee/month
Bambee From $99/month
Trinet Pricing upon request
Preview Image - <h2 class="c-block__title b-summary-table__title c-listicle__title h3" > Compare Software Specs Side by Side</h2>

Compare Software Specs Side by Side

Use our comparison chart to review and evaluate software specs side-by-side.

Compare Software

How to Choose HR Software for Payroll

HR software can solve many different challenges and improve numerous workflows. To help you figure out which HR software best fits your needs, you need to pinpoint your key users and document their specific challenges first.

As you work through your own unique HR software selection process, keep the following points in mind:

  • What problem are you trying to solve - Start by identifying the challenges you're trying to overcome. This will help you clarify the features and functionality the HR and payroll software needs to provide.
  • Who will need to use it - To evaluate cost and requirements, consider who will be using the software and how many licenses you'll need. You'll need to evaluate if it'll just be your senior HR professionals who need admin access or your entire department. Once that's clear, it's also useful to rank the needs of your different users to identify your key priorities for your HR software power users, managers, and employees, to ensure they're all met.
  • What other tools it needs to work with - Clarify what tools you're replacing, what tools are staying, and the tools you'll need to integrate with, such as accounting or time-tracking systems. You'll need to decide if the tools will need to integrate together, or alternatively, if you can replace multiple tools with an all-in-one HR platform.
  • What outcomes are important - Determine the results that the software needs to deliver to be considered a success. Review the capabilities you want to gain or improve, and how you will be measuring success. For example, you may want to provide a more enriched employee experience through increased self-service abilities or offer more flexible payment options for your employees, such as on-demand pay. You could compare software features until you’re blue in the face but if you aren’t thinking about the outcomes you want to achieve, you could waste a lot of valuable time.
  • How it would work within your organization - Consider the software selection alongside your existing workflows and systems. Evaluate what's working well, and the areas that are causing issues that need to be addressed.

Remember every business is different — don’t assume that a specific HR and payroll system will work for your organization just because it's popular.

Best HR Software for Payroll Reviews

Below, you’ll find my detailed summaries of the 10 best HR software for payroll on the market today, with a summary of each solution’s key features, an explanation of why I included them in this list, screenshots, and information about trials and pricing summarized in a comparison chart. Plus, there are 14 extra bonus options below if you’d like even more possibilities to consider.

Here’s my take on each of the best HR software with payroll:

Best HR and payroll platform for globally distributed teams

  • Free demo available
  • Flat rate user pricing
Visit Website
Rating: 4.8/5

Deel is an HR and global payroll platform that enables hiring in over 150 countries. It allows you to hire anyone as a contractor or employee without worrying about local laws, complicated tax systems, or international payroll, which is why I think it's one of the best tools for global HR teams.

Why I picked Deel: Deel offers features for expense reimbursements, managing contractor and employee contract and pay data, doing payroll, and handling off-cycle adjustments. Local country experts provide consultation for each location you hire from, ensuring your contracts are properly worded, while helping you avoid contractor misclassification. Employees and contractors can also self-manage their pay and personal data, which reduces admin load.

An advantage of going with Deel is that it's one of the largest international payroll solutions—it's a reputable company with 24/7 online customer support and dedicated account managers. It also complies with SOC2 and ISO 27001 security standards.

Deel Standout Features & Integrations:

Features that make Deel especially great for global payroll include international payroll, local compliance monitoring, global mobility support, and dedicated account managers to help you navigate any complexities in managing a global workforce. You can also compare different country costs and see what benefits and withholdings are required.

Integrations are available with popular accounting platforms, including NetSuite, Quickbooks, and Xero. Deel also uses major payment providers like Wise, PayPal, Payoneer, and Revolut to offer flexible withdrawal options and reduce unnecessary international transfer fees.

Pros and cons


  • You can access Deal-owned EOR entities to hire internationally
  • Handles contractor and employee payments
  • Great for international payroll


  • More expensive than most basic payroll software
  • Not much selection in available employee healthcare plans

Best for cutting out third party payment integrators

  • Free trial available
  • EOR from $650/employee/month or $2/contractor/month; Global payroll from $3 to $12/employee/month
Visit Website
Rating: 4.5/5

Papaya Global is an HR and payroll software platform that offers end-to-end global workforce management solutions and cross-border payments in 160+ countries. The platform supports all employee options (payroll, EoR, and contractors), and supports payroll payment as well as payments to vendors and authorities.

Why I picked Papaya Global: Even though they have some standard HR features, this platform really focuses on being the best-in-class in workforce payments, and as such, they've built some of the best payment tech, built on their own regulated payments network backed by JP Morgan. This allows them to guarantee a 72-hour delivery of payments (they take liability if it doesn't), and it enables their uses to cut out the cost and hassle of third party payment integrators.

Papaya Global Standout Features & Integrations:

Features that differentiate Papaya from its competitors include AI-driven account funding that can simulate your payments in advance so you know how much to fund and what your FX fees will be. But the main advantage is its proprietary payment network—Papaya's payment tech gives you control over when payments arrive (not just when payments should send), and since it's not going through a separate third party, you're able to make full value transfers with no hidden fees, unlike when you pay through a third party.

Integrations are available with BambooHR, Expensify, Microsoft Dynamics 365, Namely, NetSuite, Priority Software, SAP Business One, SAP Concur, and SAP SuccessFactors. They can also create additional custom integrations for your existing HR software upon request.

Pros and cons


  • Can handle international vendor payments in addition to contractors and employees
  • Proprietary payment network that guarantees timing of payment delivery
  • Advanced forecasting features to predict costs


  • Isn't available in a few countries, especially in the Middle East
  • User interface takes a while to learn to navigate

Best for mid-market businesses with an established HR department

  • Free demo available
  • From $8/user/month
Visit Website
Rating: 4.8/5

Rippling is a popular, modern workforce operations platform that offers an entire HR suite. It offers payroll management, in addition to a lot of other things—operational workflows, applicant tracking, and even some IT features like device and IT inventory management.

Why I picked Rippling: For our purposes here, I focused on Rippling's payroll features—which, to be totally honest, are comprehensive but also pretty standard. It's definitely good for payroll management, but I think the real value of Rippling comes into play when factoring in all of the other workforce management features it offers in addition to payroll. That's why this is a great tool for larger workplaces with an established HR department that can take advantage of all the advanced functions of the tool.

Rippling Standout Features & Integrations:

Standout features for managing payroll in Rippling include their automatic tax filing (it calculates and files your federal/provincial taxes, factoring in when employees move) and robust features that are helpful for pay compliance in a large workforce, such as automatic minimum wage enforcement, overtime enforcement, and leave enforcement.

Integrations are available with Google Workspace, Typeform, Databricks, BrightHire, Atlassian, Google Workspace, Slack, Checkr, Zoom, GitHub, Asana, 1Password, Zendesk, Dropbox, Sage Intacct, Netsuite, Microsoft 365, QuickBooks, DocuSign, Upwork, LinkedIn, and dozens more.

Pros and cons


  • Robust, enterprise grade tool with additional IT and Finance modules available
  • Has much more advanced HR workflow management than most other tools
  • Advanced and comprehensive HR features


  • Built-in time tracking system is not very customizable
  • Complex feature set creates a steeper learning curve for employees learning to use it

Best HR and payroll service for international, remote-first businesses

  • Free demo + free plan available
  • From $499/employee/month or $29/contractor/month

Oyster’s HR platform and payroll solution includes fully-compliant international payroll services with automatic local deductions, taxes, and contributions, no matter where your team is located, making them a great choice for remote-first businesses.

Why I picked Oyster: Their payroll software is used successfully in over 180 countries to recruit and hire staff globally, with built-in tools to manage international payroll taxes and employment law. They also have carefully crafted compliance guardrails in place for local labor laws to ensure your company receives the legal protection you’ll need when operating in a new territory.

Oyster’s payroll solution has a clean interface that’s easy to navigate and includes applicant tracking and employee onboarding features. You can also use Oyster to pay international employees or independent contractors in their local currency, reimburse them for out-of-pocket expenses, or offer them localized employee benefits.

Oyster’s system also includes a helpful employment cost calculator that can determine the cost of hiring a new employee in any country, including their required taxes and government contributions, plus the Oyster flat-fee, which varies depending on the country you’re hiring in.

Oyster Standout Features & Integrations:

Features of note are the fully-compliant international payroll (coupled with international hiring and benefits administration features), plus contractor management features for completing paperwork, onboarding, and paying global contractors.

Integrations are available with several popular applicant tracking systems, including BambooHR, Bob, and Greenhouse, plus accounting programs like QuickBooks, and Xero, with more integrations in the works.

Best for automating payroll tasks

  • 90-day free trial + free demo available
  • From $5/employee/month + $99/month base fee
Visit Website
Rating: 4.1/5

Paycor is a human capital management solution that modernizes every aspect of people management, from HR and payroll to recruiting, onboarding, talent management, career development, and employee retention. More than 40,000 business owners trust Paycor to help them solve problems and achieve their goals.

Why I picked Paycor: They are well-suited for small to medium-sized businesses with salaried employees, since you can take advantage of their ability to automatically run payroll when salaries are known. For any salary changes, Paycor includes proactive alerts to help you catch any potential errors before they become problematic. Their OnDemand Pay feature also allows employees to access their wages in advance of their next pay day, if they need it.

Paycor Standout Features & Integrations:

Features include easy-to-use yet powerful payroll tools, flexible payment options, auto-run capabilities, notifications & alerts, powerful real-time reporting, and engaging employee self-service. Paycor also integrates with tools for wage and salary verification, expense management, employee wellness, certified payroll, and FMLA to cover all your business needs.

Integrations are available with over 200 applications through Paycor's Marketplace, including Emburse Certify, Equifax, GoCo, GoodHire, HireTech, Ignite, Instant Pay, My Enroll360, Payfactors, Sterling, Tapcheck, WorkforceHub, Zillion, and other systems.

Pros and cons


  • Mobile app allows for payroll management on the go
  • Offers live and on-demand product training and webinars
  • All-in-one solution well suited to enterprise businesses


  • UX can be a little clunky at times
  • Time cards are a bit simplistic

Best for international payroll in 170+ countries

  • Free demo available
  • From $199/employee/month for EOR and $25/mo for contractors
Visit Website
Rating: 4.3/5

Remofirst is a payroll software that provides users with a secure, efficient, and easy-to-use platform for managing payroll processes. Users can input employee information, calculate taxes, and generate pay stubs. The software offers many features, including employee self-service, direct deposit, tax compliance, and reporting.

Why I picked Remofirst: The software provides tools for managing employee shares and dilution, as well as for issuing specialized reports on equity and bonus activity. Its reporting feature allows users to generate detailed reports on their payroll data which can be generated for a specific period. The cost calculation feature helps businesses budget costs effectively by considering various factors, including the number of employees, the type of benefits provided, and the frequency of payments. Employees can also view their equity and bonus information in real-time, and the system automatically calculates vesting schedules and payout dates.

Remofirst lets businesses manage employee benefits programs with ease. Users can track employee eligibility, enroll employees in benefits plans, and even change existing plans. It also allows businesses to generate employee enrollment and participation reports. Dashboards summarize team distribution and spending with visual graphs and charts.

Remofirst can also manage payroll and invoicing for businesses with employees abroad. The software automatically generates accurate paychecks and invoices in the local currency and tracks employee vacation days, sick leave, and expense reimbursements. Remofirst sends invoices every month, ensuring your employees are paid on time. Users can access a dedicated account manager and Remofirst's knowledge base to troubleshoot any issues.

Remofirst Standout Features & Integrations:

Features include employee self-service, time and attendance tracking, leave management, an employee cost calculator, an HR analytics dashboard, performance appraisal tools, and 24/7 customer service.

Integrations are available with trusted payment providers like PayPal and Transferwise.

Best for small businesses in the US

  • 30-day free trial
  • From $6/employee/month + $40/month base fee
Visit Website
Rating: 5/5

OnPay’s full-service payroll software offers transparent, affordable pricing and a great set of basic payroll management features that are easy to use. It's a simple, effective solution that's great for small businesses that want to manage their payroll, benefits, and employee data in one place.

Why I picked OnPay: Their customer service is excellent, with platform specialists available to help you set up your payroll process. They also have licensed in-house insurance brokers that help small businesses set up health, dental, and vision plans with providers like Humana, Cigna, Blue Cross/Blue Shield, Aetna, and UnitedHealthcare. Once in place, benefit costs are synced with payroll, which means you won’t have to worry about capturing any cost fluctuations yourself.

Another thing I love is that they offer special payroll services for certain industries like restaurants, farms and agriculture, churches and clergy, and nonprofits.

OnPay Standout Features & Integrations:

Standout Features: OnPay has a complete but simple set of payroll services and compliance settings for all 50 states, for a much lower price than many other tools. In addition to payroll, you can use a set of essential HR tools for no additional cost, including automated employee onboarding flows, employee personnel files, document storage with e-sign capabilities, compliance audits, paid time-off tracking.

Another great feature is their 401k integration that automatically supports employer matching and profit-sharing options, and can garner small businesses extra tax credits.

Integrations are available with Deputy, Magnify, Mineral, PosterElite, QuickBooks, When I Work, Xero, and with the 401k retirement platforms America’s Best 401k, Guideline, and Vestwell.

Pros and cons


  • Really good customer service
  • Streamlined layout that's easy to learn to use
  • Easy to set up


  • Has some automations but could use more
  • Not set up to handle global payroll

Best for midsize to enterprise companies

  • Free demo available
  • From $39/month + $5/employee/month
Visit Website
Rating: 4.2/5

Paychex Flex is an HR software platform offering a larger set of features for time tracking, payroll processing, and benefits administration. They have many different plans, but because they offer more advanced features that go simple payroll administration, I think this is best for midsize to enterprise companies who can take advantage of those features.

Why I picked Paychex Flex: Beyond offering your standard payroll management features, Paychex Flex is great for midsize companies in that it helps you manage 401(k)s, health insurance plans, retirement savings accounts, and other benefits options in one centralized system. It tracks contributions and eligibility requirements while automating enrollment processes and simplifying benefit administration tasks such as invoicing providers or managing FSA claims.

It's also a great tool for companies doing a lot of hiring; it automates collecting required documentation from new hires and manages the process of new hire reporting to government agencies.

Paychex Flex Standout Features & Integrations:

Standout features include online payroll processing (with multiple payment options ranging from direct deposit to paycards and paper checks), as well as a very customizable employee-facing portal (you can customize employee access rights based on job roles). It also has really good tools for budgeting and forecasting and comprehensive reporting capabilities for quick analysis of financial data. It's got a great feature for businesses with hourly employees: mobile time cards, which lets employees clock in and out from their phones.

Integrations are available with major business tools such as ApplicantStack, AxisCare, BambooHR, Buddy Punch, Built for Teams, Time Tracker, Xero, and Quickbooks Online.

Pros and cons


  • Offers mobile time cards to clock in and out via mobile phone
  • Detailed and customizable employee portal
  • Comprehensive set of HR features (employee health, retirement, etc)


  • More complex platform and feature set; steeper learning curve
  • Relatively more expensive than some payroll tools (better suited to larger businesses)

Best for easy onboarding with a dedicated account manager

  • Free demo available
  • From $99/month
Visit Website
Rating: 3.6/5

Bambee's cloud-based HR software is specifically tailored for small and medium-sized businesses. Their software covers a wide range of functions, including employee onboarding, compliance, and employee termination. They also offer a guided payroll service, which is available as an add-on.

Why I picked Bambee: I included Bambee in this list because their combined HR and payroll service covers everything needed to manage HR tasks efficiently. I also appreciate the fact that each client receives a dedicated account manager for an affordable monthly price, a great service for any small business owner who doesn't have the budget or resources to hire an in-house HR or payroll specialist.

Bambee Standout Features & Integrations:

Features include 2-day direct deposit, integrated compliance monitoring, and automatic federal, state, and local taxes. It also includes task management tools to ensure no key tasks fall through the cracks.

Integration details are currently not available.

Best payroll and HR platform for integrated compensation benchmarking capabilities

  • Free demo available
  • Pricing upon request

TriNet is an HR and global payroll service provider with a software platform to help businesses manage their HR processes, employee benefits, and compliance requirements. Businesses operating on a global scale can manage their payroll and other HR processes through the system.

Why I picked TriNet: The software's integrated payroll system can handle complex payroll regulations in various countries, making it a suitable choice for businesses that operate in several different locations. It can manage payroll tax withholdings and can also be used to administer employee benefits. Compensation benchmarking can be performed in the software, giving you reliable, accurate data to inform your compensation structure and pay ranges.

In addition to its payroll management capabilities, the platform can support various other HR tasks like employee onboarding, time tracking, and workforce analytics, bringing various aspects of your people operations into a single hub. It also has document management features to keep all of your HR documents organized and accounted for.

TriNet Standout Features & Integrations:

Features include an employee perks program, a global payroll solution, compliance with local tax laws and regulations, custom rewards, a variety of payment options, and employee recognition programs.

Integrations include QuickBooks, Oracle NetSuite, Sage Intacct, BambooHR, Lattice, Greenhouse Software, Carta, and Xero.

Pros and cons


  • Global payroll management for multi-national businesses
  • Company provides HR services as well as software
  • Centralizes all of your HR processes in one platform


  • Full functionality may not be needed
  • Robust system, comes with a learning curve

Other HR Software for Running Payroll

I shortlisted a few more tools during my research—they're not in my top 10 for HR software for doing payroll, but still worth checking out:

  1. ADP Workforce Now

    Best for startups and scaling businesses

  2. Insperity

    Best for combining HR & payroll software with additional expert services

  3. Patriot Software

    Best for small-to-midsize US companies

  4. Eddy

    Best all-in-one solution for small US businesses

  5. Gusto

    Best budget-friendly option for beginners

  6. PrimePay

    Best for small to medium businesses

  7. Natural HR

    Best for advanced analytics and reporting

  8. Push

    Best for restaurants and hospitality businesses

  9. NetSuite SuitePeople

    Best for tracking employee goals

  10. Remote

    Best for high-growth companies with international contractors

  11. BambooHR

    Best for employee payroll in large, US-based enterprises

  12. Factorial

    Best for programing and automating bonuses

  13. Justworks

    Best for managing both hourly & salaried timesheets

  14. Humi

    Best for Canadian companies

If you still haven't found what you're looking for here, check out these other related tools that we've tested and evaluated:

Selection Criteria for HR Software with Payroll

Selecting HR software for payroll requires a deep understanding of how specific functionalities support common use cases, solve common pain points, or improve operational efficiency. My approach to choosing the best HR and payroll software for this list is grounded in my years of HR management experience and thorough research to ensure my recommendations are based on actual utility and performance.

To give you added confidence in my list, here’s a summary of the evaluation criteria I used to make my final selections for the best HR software for payroll:

Core HR Software for Payroll Functionalities (25% of score): To be considered for inclusion in this list, here are the core HR functionalities each system had to offer:

  • Tools to automate payroll calculations and pay employees via direct deposit
  • Tools to manage pay-related details, including salaries, bonuses, incentives, pay stubs, and expense reimbursements
  • The ability to manage and track employee data such as time off and overtime and calculate accurate wage payments
  • Automatic tax deduction calculations, and tax filing features
  • Basic compliance monitoring capabilities
  • Integrated modules for easy digital data management
  • Some form of employee self-service module to reduce administrative requests
  • Software integrations with other key systems including compensation management systems, time and attendance tracking tools, benefits administration systems, and other HR management solutions
  • Customizable user roles and permissions to curate who can access your employee data

Additional Standout Features (25% of final score): To help differentiate one payroll system from another, I also took note of any unique features, including:

  • Solutions that offer global payroll abilities, such as aggregated payroll runs spanning multiple currencies, to support international organizations or workforces
  • AI-driven payroll automations, such as tax code updates or predictive analytics for labor costs
  • Customizable reporting and analytics tools that offer deeper workforce insights
  • Mobile accessibility by way of dedicated apps for Android and iOS mobile devices, or mobile-friendly user interfaces for both employee and admin users

Usability (10% of final score): To assess each software system's usability, I considered the following:

  • The design of their user interface, with a preference for simple navigation and menu designs that make information easily accessible
  • Role-based access control features that are easy to set up, ensuring users only see the information they need
  • Responsive designs that work across different operating systems, including mobile devices
  • Self-service features for different types of users (employees, managers, administrators, power users, etc.) to ensure a positive user experience

Onboarding (10% of final score): To get a sense of each software provider's customer onboarding process, I considered the following factors:

  • The availability of best practice guides to streamline the setup process
  • Whether comprehensive training materials are available, including videos and interactive tutorials, to speed up internal training for new users
  • The availability of dedicated customer success managers or on-call customer support teams, including 24/7 help via chatbots
  • Any templates that you can customize to your specific needs, including adding your company branding, to speed up onboarding

Customer Support (10% of final score): To evaluate the level of customer support each vendor offered, I considered the following:

  • Whether multiple support channels are available for assistance, including email, phone, and live chat
  • Whether customer support is only available within specific time frames or zones, or 24/7 via chatbots
  • The existence of any proactive support options, such as a dedicated account manager or regular check-ins
  • Whether they offer a customer-facing knowledge base, FAQs, or other self-service tools to aid problem-solving
  • The overall quality, responsiveness, and helpfulness of the support team during customer onboarding and post-purchase, as inferred from customer reviews

Value for Price (10% of final score): To gauge the value of each software, I considered the following factors:

  • The availability of free trials or demos to test the software before purchasing
  • Competitive and transparent pricing models that reflect the software's feature depth and explain which features are included at each level
  • Tiered pricing plans that cater to different business sizes, from small to medium-sized businesses (SMBs) up to enterprise-level organizations

Customer Reviews (10% of final score): Evaluating customer reviews is the final element of my selection process, which helps me understand how well a product performs in the hands of real users. Here are the factors I considered:

  • Whether a product has consistently high ratings across multiple review platforms, indicating a broad level of user satisfaction
  • Specific praises, criticisms, or trends in customer feedback that indicate the software's strengths or areas for improvement
  • Whether customer feedback specifically mentions issues with ease of use, customer support responsiveness, or lacking features
  • Any testimonials or real-world examples of how the software has improved payroll processes

By using this assessment framework, I was able to identify the HR software for payroll that goes beyond basic requirements to offer additional value through unique features, intuitive usability, smooth onboarding, effective support, and overall value for price.

As of 2024, the HR and payroll software landscape continues to evolve to satisfy changing organizational needs and incorporate technological advancements, such as artificial intelligence (AI). Here are several emerging trends that are currently impacting HR and payroll software development:

  • AI-Driven Payroll Processes: Payroll systems have begun using artificial intelligence (AI) to automate routine tasks, detect anomalies, monitor compliance, reduce errors, and save time. This advancement in payroll technology is a response to the increasing complexity of payroll regulations, helping to make payroll processes more efficient.
  • Global Payroll Capabilities: As businesses become more global, the need for payroll software that can manage multi-country payroll across different currencies has become crucial. Tools like Papaya Global and Deel have emerged as leaders in this space, offering solutions that simplify the complexity of global payroll, tax, and compliance issues.
  • Enhanced Data Security Features: As new cybersecurity threats continue to emerge, HR and payroll software providers have added enhanced data security features such as two-factor authentication, or biometric identification features, to help organizations protect sensitive employee data.
  • Flexible Payment Options: Modern payroll software has started to incorporate more flexible payment options including bank transfers, payments to digital wallets, and payments made in cryptocurrency. Early-wage access or earned-wage access is also rising in popularity, allowing your employees to withdraw their pay in between pay periods, improving their cash flow and increasing their employee satisfaction.

As technology continues to advance, HR professionals can expect payroll software to become even more intuitive and employee-centric, further simplifying the complexities of payroll management.

What is HR Software for Payroll?

HR software for payroll is a digital tool designed to manage and automate the process of paying employee wages. It calculates salaries, handles taxes and deductions, and ensures timely and accurate payment.

Key features include automated wage calculations, tax compliance tools, direct deposit, time and attendance integration, benefits management, payroll reporting, and self-service portals where employees can access their pay information.

Features of HR Software for Payroll

To deliver the core functionality I outlined above, here are some features I think are key in an HR system for managing payroll:

  • Payroll Processing & Management Automation: These combined features allow your HR department to automate many aspects of running payroll, including wages, taxes, and deductions. It also includes tools to manage salaries, bonuses, incentives, pay stubs, expense reimbursements, and more.
  • Compliance Management: HR and payroll software is consistently updated to reference the latest tax rates and regulations. This is vital for maintaining compliance with government laws and avoiding penalties.
  • Tax Filing: To help you with your corporate tax obligations, HR and payroll software also includes tools to prepare annual tax documents such as T4's, W-2's, and 1099 forms.
  • Direct Deposit: It almost goes without saying, but every payroll system in this list allows you to deposit pay directly into your employees' bank accounts. Some offer additional payment options, such as pay cards or early earned wage access as well.
  • Time and Attendance Tracking: It's difficult to ensure wage payments are correct without verifying your employees' work hours. The best HR software for payroll keeps track of your team's hours worked, overtime, paid time-off (PTO), and unpaid time off to ensure payroll calculations are accurate.
  • Customizable Payroll Reports: There's no use in collecting data if you can't interpret it. The HR solution should help your HR department create customizable payroll reports so you can present them to your management team for financial planning, compliance reporting, and auditing purposes.
  • Talent Management: The software should collect and interpret employee data, such as employee lifecycle states, employee benefits enrolment, employee engagement, and churn rates, so your talent management team can plan for the future.
  • Self-Service Employee Portal: This feature gives employees access to their payroll information, pay stubs, and tax documents. This empowers employees and reduces the workload of the HR department by minimizing inquiries.
  • Data Security and Privacy: This feature ensures that all payroll data is securely stored and managed, protecting sensitive employee information. This is critical for complying with data protection laws and for maintaining employee trust.
  • Scalability: Scalability is important for businesses planning to expand, as it ensures the payroll system can handle an increasing number of employees without compromising performance.

You can find more detail in this article that goes into more depth about payroll system features.

Benefits of HR Software for Payroll

HR software for payroll is designed to make all aspects of your payroll process more efficient. By investing in modern HR and payroll software, you can reduce administrative burdens, make better data-driven decisions, and uncover actionable insights to help you strategically manage your workforce more effectively.

By selecting the best HR and payroll software for your specific business needs, you can expect to gain the following benefits:

  • Increased Efficiency: By automating routine payroll tasks, HR software significantly reduces the time and effort required to process payroll. This allows your HR staff to focus on more strategic tasks, improving productivity.
  • Enhanced Accuracy: By minimizing human errors due to data entry and manual payroll calculations, HR and payroll software ensures accurate payroll processing with no need for retroactive corrections.
  • Improved Compliance: These software systems automatically update tax rates and compliance requirements on your behalf, reducing the risk of penalties for non-compliance.
  • Improved Information Transparency for Employees: By empowering employees to access their pay stubs, tax documents, and benefits information through self-service portals, this improves information transparency and reduces HR inquiries.
  • Better Reporting and Analytics: These software systems include comprehensive reporting and analytics tools that offer insights into payroll expenses, employee compensation, and tax obligations. These insights can inform better strategic business decisions and more robust financial planning.

For organizations looking to streamline their payroll processes, reduce errors, and improve compliance, HR software for payroll offers a compelling solution. These systems not only enhance the efficiency and accuracy of payroll management but also contribute to greater employee satisfaction and better strategic insights.

Costs & Pricing for HR Software for Payroll

The price range for HR and payroll software varies depending on the type of payroll features and services offered. To give you a wide range to choose from, this list includes everything from basic payroll and HR systems to more complex global payroll platforms. All of them operate on a SaaS (software-as-a-service) model, meaning they offer their payroll services through a monthly subscription model.

For basic payroll and HR systems, you can expect to pay a monthly base fee plus an additional charge per employee. The typical range for base fees is between $10 to $99 per month, with a per-employee charge between $2 to $10.

Below is a breakdown of typical plan options and their pricing:

Plan Comparison Table for HR Software for Payroll

Plan TypeAverage Monthly FeeAverage Price per EmployeeCommon Features
Free$0$0Basic payroll processing for a limited number of employees, basic tax calculation, and limited reports.
Basic$10 - $25 per month$2 - 4 per employee, per monthPayroll processing for a limited number of employees, basic tax filing, standard reports, employee self-service portal
Professional$25 - $40 per month$4 - $6 per employee, per monthMulti-state or province payroll, additional reports, HR features, compliance report + all the features in Basic.
Advanced$40 - $99 per month$5 - $10 per employee, per monthCustomizable reports, advanced HR tools, integrations, enhanced security + all the features in Professional.
EnterpriseCustom pricingCustom pricingScalable for a large number of employees, dedicated support, advanced analytics, custom integrations + all features in Advanced.
Global PayrollUsually priced per employee$25 - $500 per employee, per monthAbility to pay employees in multiple currencies, international direct deposit, international compliance monitoring, dedicated support + required Basic features or higher.
A breakdown of payroll plans and pricing details depending on the level of features required.

More complex systems that offer global payroll and employer of record (EOR) services will cost you a little more. For these platforms, you can expect to pay between $25 to $500 per employee (with no additional monthly fee) depending on the service configuration you go with.

For a deeper dive into this topic, read our breakdown of typical payroll software costs and hidden fees.

People Also Ask

Still trying to wrap your head around how HR software for payroll can amp up your in-house HR processes? Here are some answers to frequently asked questions that should help:

What HR and payroll software is best for small businesses?

If you’re a small business owner looking for an affordable payroll system, don’t sweat! Plenty of software providers have multiple pricing tiers to cater to the needs of businesses of all sizes. Many also offer free trials and some even have free plans so you can try before you buy. Often, these companies provide consulting services and expert support alongside their software products too.

To point you in the right direction, take a look at my list of the best free payroll software, plus some tips on how to manage payroll for your small business, too.

Are there different types of payroll software?

Yes! The payroll software market is vast and there are many different sub-sets of payroll software to serve different business needs and sizes. Some systems specialize in servicing small or midsize businesses, while others are more geared towards large businesses or enterprise-level organizations. There are also full-service payroll companies out there too, if your internal resources are limited and you want to outsource the entire process.

Finding the right fit for your business will depend on your specific business needs and the features you deem essential or just nice to have.

What specific payroll tax features does HR software offer?

Payroll software automates employee payments and ensures compliance with tax regulations, significantly simplifying the process of handling employee tax deductions. Key payroll tax features include automating tax calculations, ensuring compliance with federal, state, and local tax laws, and managing employee tax forms and deductions. For example, payroll software automates the calculation of payroll taxes and withholdings, generates tax payments, and prepares necessary payroll forms, ensuring that tax laws are followed and compliance is kept up-to-date​​​​.

For more on payroll software benefits and features, including tax management, you might find this article useful: What is Payroll Software: a 2024 Guide + Key Benefits.

Can these software handle multiple currencies for global teams?

If you’re looking to pay employees in multiple currencies, a global payroll solution is what you need. Global payroll software is designed to accommodate businesses with international teams, handling multiple currencies and ensuring compliance with various tax regulations and labor laws across countries. These systems simplify the process of managing multi-country payroll, tax obligations, and compliance requirements, offering features such as currency conversions and localization to meet the needs of a global workforce​​.

Several of the systems in this list do offer global payroll services. To learn more, take a look at our in-depth reviews of Papaya Global, Deel, and Globalization Partners.

What level of customer support can users expect from payroll and HR software providers?

The level of customer support varies among payroll software providers, but many offer comprehensive support options to ensure a smooth user experience. This can include online resources, live chat, email support, and dedicated account managers.

Exceptional customer support is crucial, especially for businesses that do not have in-house payroll experts. Offering robust customer support ensures that any issues can be promptly addressed and helps HR departments navigate the software effectively, providing guidance for a streamlined payroll process​.

If you’re interested in outsourcing your payroll process completely, a payroll service may be a better fit for your needs.

Other Payroll Software Reviews

If you're looking for a different type of payroll software, here are some other reviews from experts at People Managing People:

Other Resources for Payroll Pros

If you're interested in more than just software, these other resources for payroll professionals may just do the trick:


HR solutions are transforming People Operations through technology. Especially as more companies are hiring remotely, in 2024 there are more companies developing global payroll solutions and offering full-service EOR and payroll platforms that help you pay an international workforce that's made up of both employees and contractors.

Using a payroll processing system with incorporated HR functionalities can really help a lot. You'll gain a central location for all your employee records and documents. You'll also be able to track your employees' work hours accurately and ensure they're always paid correctly. On top of that, your tax and compliance requirements will be tracked and managed for you.

I hope my detailed breakdown of the top HR & payroll software helped you find the right fit!

Subscribe to our newsletter for more solutions and strategies from top thinkers in People Operations.

Related read: Best Employee Management Systems

By Kim Behnke

Kim Behnke is an HR Tool Expert & Writer for People Managing People. She draws on her 9 years of human resources experience and her keen eye for systematic processes to support her analyses of the top HR tools on the market. She is passionate about maximizing efficiencies and streamlining workflows to ensure internal systems run smoothly. Kim's HR experience includes recruitment, onboarding, performance management, training and development, policy development and enforcement, and HR analytics. She also has degrees in psychology, writing, publishing, and technical communication, and recently completed a Certified Digital HR Specialist program through the Academy to Innovate HR. When away from her desk, she can usually be found outside tending to her ever-expanding garden.