How to Turn on Payroll in QuickBooks

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Although Intuit has offered payroll services through QuickBooks since 1998, many small-business owners don’t realize that Intuit QuickBooks Payroll is available to them from within the software program, says Ken Darrow, senior marketing manager at Intuit.

To start using payroll services within QuickBooks, go to the Employees section on the application’s home page and click the Turn On Payroll icon. You can subscribe to the service immediately, right from the program. You’ll receive a code with the purchase, allowing you to get started immediately.

By subscribing to the QuickBooks Payroll service from within QuickBooks, you won’t need to research third-party providers or go through the process of setting up your software to work with another vendor’s system.

The Options

QuickBooks offers several payroll options. Enhanced, the most popular service, enables you to do all payroll activities in-house, including filing automatically completed federal and state tax forms with a click. If you want something even easier, you can choose the Assisted service, and Intuit payroll experts will pay and file your payroll taxes.

You may also choose to use an outside payroll vendor. However, if you’d like to keep track of the payroll data in QuickBooks, you will need to enter it manually. Some Intuit services, such as Online Payroll and Full Service Payroll, export data to QuickBooks, but most other vendors do not.

The Benefits

QuickBooks Payroll can save you time, money, and improve your small business’s cash flow. The service allows you to:

    Complete payroll in minutes, paying employees via check or direct deposit.Print checks instantly. Outside payroll services require you to call or send in your payroll hours — and then wait a few days for the checks to arrive in the mail. With QuickBooks Payroll, checks can be cut instantly.Get completed state and federal payroll tax forms, which can be mailed or filed with a click. W-2s are also included.Pay local, state, and federal taxes only when they are due, improving your cash flow. Typically, payroll service providers collect taxes every time you run your payroll and holds those taxes until they are due. With Intuit’s service, the you keep the taxes in your bank account until the due dates.Keep abreast of changing tax codes without worrying about them. When a business handles its payroll manually, an accountant or bookkeeper needs to stay on top of tax changes and withholding tables, which can be time-consuming endeavor (due to the different taxes, labor laws, and laws pertaining to child support, immigration, unemployment, and insurance that must be incorporated into payroll). With QuickBooks Payroll, tax-law changes are automatically updated in the tax tables as they occur — and an automated system sends you alerts when changes happen.

Other services offered within QuickBooks include activating direct deposit, accepting credit cards and e-checks, and ordering checks and supplies.

“Most small businesses were started to follow the dreams of the owners to do something they love,” Darrow says. “Doing payroll manually is a distraction and a poor use of their time. With QuickBooks Payroll, a typical user handles payroll in five to ten minutes.”

With more than 1 million small-business users, Intuit is the leading provider of payroll services in the United States.

Veteran freelance business writer M. Sharon Baker creates compelling content that helps companies connect with customers. She's also a freelance journalist and blogs at Every Word Counts. View all posts by M. Sharon Baker This entry was posted in Employees, Intuit Products and tagged QuickBooks. Bookmark the permalink.
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