If you offer payroll services and want to make your job a little easier, you might partner with a payroll software provider. But when your current partnership just isn’t cutting it, is it time to cut them loose?
In our recent case study, we spoke with one of our accountant partners and learned what led him to make the switch to Patriot Software. Turns out, it wasn’t just one thing. There were a few reasons—three, to be exact—that led this accountant to ditch his previous payroll provider.
3 Reasons for changing payroll systems
Switching payroll providers can be a time-consuming process. In fact, it’s a driving reason some accounting professionals stick with their current payroll partners.
But sometimes, the long-term benefits far outweigh the short-term time suck. Take a look at the following three reasons to ditch your payroll provider, courtesy of our Sentinel Tax & Accounting case study.
1. The interface isn’t intuitive
You partner with a payroll provider because you want to streamline your day-to-day responsibilities. You don’t want to get tripped up over a complicated interface.
Not to mention, your clients may make time-consuming mistakes if they struggle with the interface, too. And that can increase the time you spend fixing errors or contacting customer support for help.
A confusing interface may lead to:
- Slow payroll
- Time-consuming and costly mistakes
- The need to contact customer support
In our case study, we learned that Sentinel Tax & Accounting owner James Fleming III, EA values simple and intuitive navigation because he didn’t want to spend time thinking about payroll. Sound familiar?
Result of switching to Patriot: Fast payroll. It now takes Fleming two to three minutes to run payroll.
2. The customer support is subpar
In an ideal world, you wouldn’t have any questions or concerns when using payroll software. Right? Maybe. But, things happen. And when you or your clients need support, you want to know that you’ll get a fast response rate from knowledgeable customer service representatives.
If you’re not getting fast responses, correct responses, or both, you might be dealing with subpar customer support.
And if you’re constantly frustrated by the support you receive, it may be time to switch to someone else.
Result of switching to Patriot: “A++++” customer support that’s always responsive and knowledgeable.
3. It’s expensive!
Yes, you charge your clients for payroll services. But if your payroll partner is too expensive, your bottom line begins to fade—fast.
That’s why our third reason to switch payroll providers revolves around costs. An expensive product that’s overly complicated (think back to Reason #1) can cut into your profits and cause you to raise your accounting fees.
Instead, look for a new partner that offers:
- Cost-effective payroll software
- Special pricing for accounts
- No fees to partner
Result of switching to Patriot: Fleming was able to cut his payroll bill in half when he switched to Patriot’s Partner Program.
How to find the right partner
You’re sold—like our case study participant, you’re tired of subpar customer support, costly software, and a confusing interface.
So … now what? How do you find the golden goose of payroll software providers? Like anything, finding the right partner requires a bit of legwork, trial and error, and a bit of luck. Here are four ways to get started.
1. Know what you’re looking for
Do you want better features, like automatic updates and the ability to pay 1099 workers in payroll? How important are integrations, like accounting software?
Different accounting professionals have different needs. Some run payroll for their clients from start to finish. Others use co-branding to let clients run payroll themselves with the software. And because each accountant is different, what you’re looking for is, too.
Consider your and your clients’ needs. Ask yourself the following questions to get started:
- Do I want my payroll partner to handle tax filings and deposits for my clients?
- What features are more important to my clients (e.g., multiple work locations)?
- Would an umbrella login help me get more work done?
- Will I run payroll for my clients or have them do it themselves?
2. Look at reviews
Consider customer reviews when finding a new payroll partner. That way, you can learn about other accountants’ experiences, directly from the source.
You may be able to find reviews from both business owners (aka your clients) and accounting partners by looking at:
- The payroll provider’s website
What’s the company’s overall rating? Is there a recurring theme (good or bad)? Keep an eye out for what customers say about things that matter most to you (e.g., customer support).
3. Call customer support
Does the payroll provider have the support you need? Give them a ring and find out. That way, you can see the kind of support you can expect firsthand.
4. Sign up for a free demo or software walk-through
Want to test out the software before you make the switch? Check with potential partners to see if they offer a free software demo or personalized walk-through.
Through a demo or walk-through, you can:
- Try before you buy
- Get a feel for the navigation
- Determine if the software has all the features you need
Ready to get the support, ease of use, and price tag you’re looking for? Check out Patriot Software’s Partner Program. Join the thousands of accounting professionals who trust Patriot with their clients’ accounting and payroll, plus get a 30-day free trial!This is not intended as legal advice; for more information, please click here.