The powerful and low-cost solutions available online today allow you to track, tabulate, and perform every aspect of the payroll process, including timekeeping, vacation and sick days, taxes, check printing, direct deposit, forms, and reports. The solutions also integrate with various general ledger and accounting packages.

These online payroll solutions allow you to handle all your employee payroll processes in-house for a low fee, which can yield significant savings vs. outsourcing to third-party payroll handlers.

Among the leading solutions providers are CompuPay and ADP, which are #2 and #3 in the Comparz rankings. ADP, a $10 billion 60-year-old company, is a pioneer of the payroll industry, having begun in the era of punch cards. CompuPay, a $5 million company, is among the top-five payroll providers in the United States, focusing on the small and mid-size business market.

Both of these leaders have a strong reputation and track record in the online payroll processing space.

CompuPay generally wins on ease of use and customization, while ADP wins on service, functionality, and customization.

ADP is a more feature-rich and customizable solution, but also more difficult to configure and deploy. ADP eases these difficulties by giving you support from a dedicated Payroll Specialist who helps you choose a solution for your needs and works with you on the implementation. The specialist sets up your employee data in the system and walks you through your first two payrolls.

As a reviewer noted, while setup and training were not easy, “once up and running the system is very user friendly.”

Because of the highly customizable nature of ADP’s solutions, which include multiple add-ons and integration options, ADP’s pricing is difficult to determine. Pricing depends on how you tailor the solution to your business, and you must contact a sales representative to determine the cost for a specific solution.

ADP provides a toll-free number to connect you with a sales representative to discuss your specific needs, and chat assistance is available 24×7. There are no contracts to sign, and you can terminate at any time.

CompuPay offers a somewhat simpler and easy-to-deploy solution set. As a reviewer noted, CompuPay provides “a very user friendly basic payroll program that does all you need without voluminous and confusing interfaces and reports.”

CompuPay’s base solution for 1-5 employees, Xpress Payroll, is straightforward in its setup and pricing:  $79 per month for weekly processing; $50 per month for bi-weekly or semi-monthly processing; and $32 per month for monthly processing.

However, like ADP, Compay’s solutions for more than five employees must be tailored to your business and require a sales representative to determine pricing. And unlike ADP, CompuPay offers access to a team of payroll specialists rather than a dedicated support representative who gets to know you and your business more intimately.

Both ADP’s and CompuPay’s solutions are easily expandable and upgradeable, and both guarantee the accuracy of their solutions.

Bottom Line: If you have a business of more than five employees, call each vendor, get a quote, weigh the relative features and prices, and make your decision.  If you want mobile access, ADP is your choice.