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Payroll Service

Ugh! Every business owner hates payroll. Hates running it. Hates paying to run it. Hates licking stamps. Yet, here we are.


The Watson CPA Group offers payroll services in a variety of forms and function, and we tailor a system that is custom to your needs. Anyone can set up the withholding accounts and run payroll- a quick warning however. If you think the IRS is crazy about income taxes, they are insanely fanatical about timely and proper payroll taxes. Fines and penalties can jump up right quick if payroll is messed up. And, payroll never sleeps!


ADP Payroll Services

We have partnered with Padgett Business Services (also known as Small Biz Pros) to offer streamlined procedures to the payroll process. Their relationship with ADP allows us to provide excellent service at an extremely competitive price. ADP is a leader in payroll processing and can offer a ton of benefits to you vis-à-vis the Watson CPA Group. Benefits include-


1. Electronic Payments– Direct deposit is obvious, but we can also set up your staff with ALINE paycards which act as ATM cards. So if your employees do not routinely have checking accounts, they can get their paycheck automagically loaded onto their paycard. No need to get a check. No need to drive into the office on an off day. On payday, your staff can go to an ATM and withdraw their entire paycheck in cash. You can mix and match with direct deposit, paycards and paper checks.


2. Fraud Protection– Paper paychecks lend themselves to fraud. Hi tech photocopiers or sophisticated computer users who purchased VersaCheck check writing software for example can emulate your check easily. And remember, payroll checks can be cashed at any grocery or convenience store, or even a WalMart. Those employees simply are not trained well enough to spot bogus checks. With ADP, we can set up incognito accounts so your banking information is NEVER seen by your staff.


3. Unlimited HR Help Desk– Affordable Care Act, or Obamacare, is continuously evolving. For some employers, the need to maintain accurate records on timecards is huge. And even if you have fewer than 50 full time equivalents (FTE), there are still notices and hoops you might have to jump through to be in compliance. Through the Watson CPA Group, you have unlimited access to ADP’s human resources help desk. Question on overtime? Got it! Question on termination? Got it!


4. Access– Need extra copies of W2s? Want to know the history of pay for a certain employee? We set you up with all the access you need to your payroll data.



Flexible Versions of Payroll

There are several versions of running payroll. There is the full-tax version of ADP which allows for direct deposit, paycards, paper checks direct from ADP, incognito checking accounts, etc. ADP handles all the payroll filings (Forms 941, 940, State, etc.) and all the payroll deposits. This is a set it and forget system. One downside however is the float- as cash flow fluctuates, you might need to wait to the last day to deposit your payroll taxes. With ADP full-tax, payroll taxes are taken out the same day as the scheduled payday.


The other version of ADP (or ADP lite) has many possibilities, and can be ordered up buffet style-


1. Paystubs– we create paystubs, and you simply write checks from the business checking account.


2. Paper Checks– we write checks on your behalf, with or without your signature. We can mail them to you directly, or mail them to your employees.


3. Filings– unless using ADP full-tax, payroll filings will have to made by either you or us. Since we have all the information necessary for the filings at our fingertips, it is advisable to just let us file the forms on your behalf.


4. Payroll Taxes, Deposits– Most Federal deposits are required to be made with EFTPS, and we can help set that up and provide instructions. The instructions would be provided along with the periodic payroll information. You can avoid this headache by using the full-tax version of ADP.


If you do your own bookkeeping, we can also provide the journal entries for your cash, expense and payroll liability accounts. As mentioned we can customize a payroll system that works best for you.


Data Entry, Help Calls

We use ADP for our payroll processing, however your first and last call for help is the Watson CPA Group. We also do the data entry for your payroll needs- store managers can call in payroll hours, you can email us a list, create a spreadsheet, send notes by carrier pigeon, whatever works for you. Again, we process your payroll and use ADP as our engine and compliance partner.


Of course if you feel the need to make your own payroll entries, we can show you how that is done- you always have login credentials to your account, and can also reprint W2s or paystubs. But we would maintain access to your account with our credentials to fix problems, or to be your backup when you go on vacation or are sick. As mentioned earlier, payroll never sleeps.



Payroll is not just about writing paychecks. You might also have deductions such as health insurance, garnishments, child support, 401k, IRA and other deductions (or reimbursements) that need to be dealt with outside of the payroll run. Of course we maintain all this information for you, and can either have ADP write checks directly (using the Cadillac version) or we can tell you what to pay and where to send it.


S-Corp Owners

S-Corps are required to pay their shareholders a reasonable salary. What is a reasonable salary and how often to pay a salary are questions that are answered in our KB articles on S-Corps. Please see more information here-


Determining the S-Corp Payroll Amount


Payroll Service Rates

We can provide a firm quote for your customized payroll needs. In the meantime, here is a table of the typical fees-


  Cadillac ADP ADP Lite Billed Per
5 Employees, Bi-Weekly $120 $165 Month
10 Employees, Bi-Weekly $135 $200 Month
25 Employees, Bi-Weekly $195 $255 Month
S Corp $200* NA Quarter

*We bundle our S Corp clients to include payroll, and tax preparation for both personal and corporate tax returns. S corporations also get about 30-60 minutes of consultation each quarter to chat about their business including cash flow concerns, health insurance, liability insurance, retirement savings, long-term care, business decisions, etc.


These fees are monthly. Sure, you can do payroll for less. But our payroll services include all the data entry, compliance with Federal and State guidelines, ACA review and compliance, unlimited HR help desk, filings of payroll tax forms and consultation. You also get peace of mind knowing its handled! Don’t forget about direct deposit, paycards and fraud protection.


Payroll is so much more than just a paycheck. We know small business owners hate payroll, and they even hate having to pay for payroll even more. And Yes, you can always find someone to do your payroll for less. So, look beyond the paycheck and find the support you want and the protection you need.


Contact us for a custom quote. Payroll service fees will usually reflect the pricing above, but multiple states or other weird nuances might increase these fees. If the business services world ever had a loss-leader, payroll would be it. Very little money is made running payroll, but it is a service that must be provided.


Setup, Transfer, Conversion

If you are new to payroll, we can set up your withholding, unemployment and state disability accounts for $200 to $350 depending on the state. We have worked with most states and can quickly get things moving along for you. Conversions from an in-house payroll system are slightly easier, but still require considerable time inputting all the YTD data and employee information.


Payroll Services Termination

Like a marriage, payroll is easy to get into hard to get out. Please understand that payroll is typically a year-long commitment. There are quarterly filings and annual filings. And if a single quarterly filing is prepared and submitted, that automatically triggers a requirement for annual (year-end) filings to be prepared and submitted. If you decide to stop payroll services or switch to another provider, we will assist in that transition. However, you might still incur service fees associated with payroll since a mid-period cancellation will require payroll forms to be prepared and filed, or at least transitioned to another provider.


Value Proposition

The Watson CPA Group are tax and business consultants, not just number crunchers. Anyone can balance a checkbook. Anyone can write a check and hand it to an employee. But we take a consultative approach to your small business. Please consider the solid payroll services and consultation support which you will get with the Watson CPA Group that other bookkeeping companies might not provide. Remember, we are accountants and payroll specialists. Read more about our Value Proposition here.


Let us do the payroll! Seems easy, but do you really want to be bothered with this recurring task?


The Watson CPA Group (team profile)