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How do I process payroll in QuickBooks?

If you want to process payroll in QuickBooks, you need to subscribe to a QuickBooks Payroll service. With a QuickBooks Payroll subscription, you can:

  • Easily print paychecks right from your PC.

  • Get automatic tax table updates and automatic calculations to save you time and improve accuracy.

  • Just print, sign, and mail payroll tax filings, or let QuickBooks Payroll do it for you.

Which payroll service is right for me?

There are three levels of payroll service to choose from:

  • QuickBooks Basic Payroll: A basic in-house payroll solution—good if you want your accountant to handle your payroll tax filings.

  • QuickBooks Enhanced Payroll: An all-inclusive in-house payroll solution—best if you prefer to handle your own payroll tax filings.

  • QuickBooks Assisted Payroll: A unique payroll solution where you process payroll, and QuickBooks Payroll services will files taxes and make deposits for you.

Can I process payroll in QuickBooks without a payroll service?

If you do not want to process payroll in QuickBooks software, you (or your accountant) will need to manually re-enter your payroll figures in QuickBooks in order to balance your books. Businesses that don't have a QuickBooks Payroll subscription generally use one of these methods to calculate payroll figures:

  • A spreadsheet, or pen and paper: QuickBooks strongly discourages this method because it can be difficult to keep track of changes to tax rates and limits. Managing payroll this way can take more time, and there is a chance of introducing errors when double-entering your data in QuickBooks. However, if you still prefer this method, you can set up QuickBooks to let you print paychecks using payroll amounts and deductions you manually enter for each paycheck.
  • An outsourced service, such as ADP or Paychex: You or your accountant will need to re-enter payroll figures in QuickBooks to balance your books. With a QuickBooks Payroll service, you can get the main benefits of an outsourced provider, but spend less money and easily integrate with QuickBooks. If you want to stay with your existing payroll company, you can re-enter payroll amounts and deductions back into QuickBooks as general journal entries.
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