According to a recent article in the Wall Street Journal, over 64% of businesses prefer to handle their own payroll. Like most small businesses, we prefer to handle our payroll and taxes in an effort to keep costs down. When starting our first business, learning how to pay ourselves and the government probably caused more stress than was necessary since we didn’t know where to start. So, when you start your business, or if you’re one of the 37% of companies that use no electronic payroll software, here’s some info on how we keep our costs and stress levels a little lower.

  • Find an Accountant - Understanding the basics of accounting is probably a good idea, but handling taxes without consulting an accountant isn’t. You could probably learn about taxes by yourself, but it sure won’t be cost effective. In our case, a two hour session with a CPA explaining how to use QuickBooks, handle payroll, and pay basic taxes cost $150. For a small business, payroll and monthly/quarterly taxes are fairly repetitive, so once you know how they work once, you’re good to go. You’ll still probably have to go back to the accountant at the end of the year, but at least you’ll be able to handle the day to day stuff with confidence.

  • QuickBooks & QuickBooks Payroll - If you were to manually handle payroll, you’d have to write checks, record what employees are paid, calculate what you owe, fill out state unemployment tax forms, federal unemployment tax forms, quarterly reports, and whatever other type of taxes you have to pay. With QuickBooks, paying employees is as easy as clicking a button once they’re in the system. With employee information and what they’ve been paid on record, QuickBooks can easily create and populate the necessary forms required to pay taxes. All you really need to do is print the forms and mail them to Uncle Sam.

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Chris Campbell

Payroll & Taxes != Stress by Chris Campbell

This entry was posted 4 years ago and was filed under Notebooks.
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  1. Shawn Liu · 4 years ago

    But QuickBooks is just such a pain to use. Maybe I’m really bad with software, but I’ve paid for training from our accoutant, but I still pull my hair out each time I have to open up Quickbooks.

    As for payroll, our accountant recommended us Paychex, and we haven’t had any good experience with them. Looking to switch, so we’ll check out QuickBooks Payroll.

    Did anyone tell you about Workers Comp? For whatever reason, both our accountant and Paychex both failed to tell us about that…

  2. Chris Campbell · 4 years ago

    I agree that QuickBooks takes some getting used to. They definitely believe that more features is better. We did use Bank of America for a little while for payroll, but QuickBooks payroll seems to integrate a little easier. I also prefer their customer support over Bank of America’s.

  3. Richard White · 4 years ago

    Why not just pay yourselves as contractors (1099)? Or is there some law against that?

  4. Kumar Chetan · 4 years ago

    Use Book keeping methods. See this -> Or best thing is to hire an accountant like I have done. But still I have to maintain a ledger. Understanding taxes is like understanding female psychology. Some naturally do it in a better way and some just fail.