Perfectly simple, simply perfect.... But not a robust solution for a complex company
June 03, 2016

Perfectly simple, simply perfect.... But not a robust solution for a complex company

David Worrell | TrustRadius Reviewer
Score 8 out of 10
Vetted Review
Verified User

Overall Satisfaction with Intuit Payroll

We are a contract finance and accounting firm, and we use various flavors of Intuit Payroll both internally and for our clients.
We've watched the progress over the years as Intuit moved to QuickBooks Online and made various changes to Intuit Payroll. Like any payroll solution, it is designed to reduce man hours in the accounting department, speed payment, and assure legal compliance.

Pros

  • Integration with QuickBooks Desktop. This is the key strength of IP... it is a complete, native integration and let's you maintain all employee records and time keeping in QuickBooks
  • Job Costing. Another key differentiation -- some payroll outsources say they do true job costing (by work or item code). Don't believe them. If its' not integrated with your accounting system, you will not get "TRUE" job costing. You can get costs ASSIGNED to jobs (which may be fine), but you won't get item level detail in QuickBooks from anyone but Intuit.
  • Variety of Payment options. Use Direct Deposit or manual checks... or whatever you want. Since its in QB, you can make payments any way you want.
  • Cash Flow. This is both good and bad, but IP will not take taxes out of your bank account until they are due. That's different than some other providers that want assurance that you have the tax payments available at the moment you push "SUBMIT."

Cons

  • Intuit FULL SERVICE PAYROLL, which is an online version of their product, no longer does Job Costing. See the notes under my Benefits section --- this could be a deal breaker.
  • There are a lot of flavors to choose from, which can be confusing for the buyer. Assisted Payroll, Full Service Payroll and Online Payroll all have small differences. Some (may) work only with QuickBooks Online.
  • Locks you Into QuickBooks. I'm not aware of any other integrations, so if you switch to Sage or something (but why would you!?!) you could lose much of the capabilities you get from IP.
  • TIME -- good ROI on the time invested. Setup required some documents / signatures, but maintenance is absolutely zero and effort to process payroll is very very low.
  • MONEY -- since we do most of the heavy lifting internally, the costs to use IP are low.
  • COMPLIANCE -- they do all the tax calculations and submissions, so I never have to worry about a late fee or a calculation error.
This is a different product in my eyes. Most of the "outsourcers" really take over the entire payroll function, which divorces it from your accounting records --- and then later they try to stuff the results back into accounting through a GJE entry.
If the circumstances are right (small company, few employees, low transaction volume), then QB is just what you need -- without being too much. If you've got WAY more complexity, then start looking around.
WARNING -- if you are familiar with "The Baseball Player Problem" which is known as a ROAMING EMPLOYEE, you'll have to look elsewhere. I'm told by Intuit that there are NO intuit products that can do multi-state income tax withholding (and I'm an Intuit certified Pro Advisor, so I've spoken to everyone who should know). If you don't know what that issue is, then don't worry about it --- plow forward.
Intuit Payroll is perfect for the 2 to 20 employee company that is running QuickBooks and is willing to keep payroll in-house. Contractors and professional service companies can keep true job costing in-house and inside the accounting system, which is key to accurate reporting. It's also perfect for any shop with salary-only employees, since that kind of payroll is dead simple.
But its not a "simplistic" tool -- It will handle all kinds of deductions, including 401ks and health insurance. And since its integrated to QB, you get the proper costing of those items without even trying. (Other providers make you import a GL file that creates a journal entry -- which may not give you what you expect.
It's not recommend it for a larger company that needs more complete HR solutions -- go to a PEO like TriNet or Insperity instead.
And worst of all, if you are using the QB Desktop connected version, you do not have access to any time-keeping portal, so all employees must submit their timecards manually (Or have a QB User set up to allow them to punch directly into QuickBooks), which is a less-than-ideal situation for a larger shop.

Using Intuit Payroll

Accounting
HR
Finance
Executive Management
  • Simplify Payroll
  • Smooth out Accounting workflows
  • Assure compliance with state and federal taxation regulations
  • None in particular -- I wouldn't call payroll "Innovative".... sorry!
  • None
  • Does not apply
Works perfectly as advertised.
Our simple needs are well taken care of.

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