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Payroll Jobs and Functions

To help you understand the payroll function better it makes sense to look at typical payroll jobs and their functions.  After reading through below you will see that it makes sense to go beyond just getting payroll software to partnering with a payroll company with a live person that can help you get the job done.  Call us at (312) 574-0080 to help you with choosing an online payroll company partner.

For a new business or a small business you probably won’t find anyone whose only job function is to process payroll.  At best there is one person that handles all accounting functions or the business owner includes payroll as one of their million functions.  For these types of companies it really makes sense to work with an online payroll company.   An online payroll company should be able to handle almost everything for you

  • You need to give them the information to setup each employee and any later updates such as raises or terminations
  • You need to run a report each pay period to confirm payroll, deductions and taxes and that you have enough money in the bank to cover everything.
  • You will need to track the payroll information at a high level in your accounting system.

For midsize to larger business they may have people who have payroll specific job titles.  These companies may still work with online payroll companies just for the technology, expertise and support.  Further below are some of the job responsibilities for these jobs:

  • Payroll Assistant / Clerk
  • Payroll Processor
  • Payroll Coordinator
  • Payroll Administrator
  • Payroll Specialist
  • Payroll Analyst
  • Payroll Supervisor / Manager

Here are some other job titles that may also be involved with payroll:

  • Senior Accountant
  • Junior Tax Accountant
  • Accounts Payable Specialist
  • Credit Manager
  • Accounts Payable Clerk
  • Bookkeeper
  • Finance Manager
  • Financial Accountant
  • Accounting Manager
  • Controller
  • Chief Financial Officer (CFO)

Here are some payroll job titles with typical responsibilities:


Payroll Assistant / Clerk

  • Support Payroll Department
  • Receive and date stamp new employee start paperwork ensuring completeness
  • Review, approve, and release payroll edits.
  • Coordinating and processing any irregular payments
  • Copy, log, and distribute payroll checks
  • Maintain and organize an efficient filing system
  • Handle phone calls relating to payroll
  • Research and provide copies for internal audits upon request
  • Utilize in-house accounting system for research and audit
  • Accurately meet weekly and monthly payroll deadlines
  • Some billing
  • Understand unions payroll policies
  • Research and answer questions from employees regarding payroll matters.
  • Solve complex problems related to compensation


Payroll Processor

  • Responsible for the processing of multi-state payroll utilizing online payroll company system & time & attendance software
  • Ad hoc payroll reporting using online payroll company website
  • Enter and maintain new hires, transfers, terms, salary changes, W-4s and Direct Deposits
  • Enter timecard information into payroll system
  • Research and complete requests from Auditors & outside agencies
  • Process all types of wage garnishments, support orders, tax levies
  • Research and respond to employee questions regarding their paychecks
  • Calculate manual checks as needed
  • Scanning of payroll documents and various clerical duties.


Payroll Coordinator

  • Assist with payroll processing, data uploads and transmission of data to the online payroll company
  • Process manual checks when necessary
  • Act as a team lead for all company garnishments
  • Review and audit new and changed employee information
  • Respond to questions, research discrepancies, and resolve pay issues
  • Calculate retroactive pay adjustments
  • Verify and audit information prior to payroll transmission
  • Act as backup for other payroll duties


Payroll Administrator

  • Process payroll for employees.
  • Provide customer service to HR and employees regarding all aspects of payroll
  • Manage payroll taxes, garnishment process, 401k, Workers comp, Benefits
  • Coordinate and manage internal and external audit process
  • Coordinate tip distribution.
  • Manage all payroll general ledger activities, posting multiple expense and accrual entries.
  • Provide direction on company policies, pay practices and federal and state legislation.
  • Compile data and work with outside auditors from Workers Compensation, Labor Board, and Franchise Tax Board.
  • Prepare and processed payroll, taxes, 401K, health insurance and dental insurance.
  • Prepare Monthly, Quarterly and Month-end reports/closing
  • Manage Special Finance Projects.
  • Process the bi-weekly multi-state payroll for our US employees
  • Coordinate new hire, leave of absence, transfers, relocations, status changes, and termination processes with HR
  • Process all external payroll related inquires
  • Process and reconcile third-party checks (garnishments, levies, etc.)
  • Balance and audit quarterly Tax Filings
  • Manage time keeping system.
  • Sort and mail all bi-weekly payroll checks as well as year-end W-2’s
  • Prepare journal entries and payroll account reconciliations, investigate and resolve any discrepancies
  • Support Payroll department with post payroll processing audits as applicable
  • Maintain payroll documentation and payroll files
  • Provide back up support for international payroll process as needed

Payroll Specialist

  • Process all payroll related information and maintain employee data in the payroll system.
  • Maintain confidentiality of payroll information. 
  • Receive and manage payroll from multiple locations and manage entry of payroll related data.
  • Process payroll (input, balance, verify, distribute paychecks and related reports)
  • Process garnishments for payroll input and payments to the court
  • Process new hires, salary increases, promotions and terminations
  • Accurate processing of employee overtime pay for various states. 
  • Provide customer service to employees, supervisors, budget owners regarding payroll related data
  • Maintain and archive payroll data and related documentation
  • Assist in abandoned/unclaimed property research and due diligence
  • Assist in reconciliation's of payroll data including payroll related deductions
  • Process applicable new vendor requests
  • Process check requests for deduction amounts
  • Timely and accurate processing of payroll according to established payroll schedule and in compliance with established SOX procedures. This includes utilizing both timekeeping system files, spreadsheet uploads, and manual data entry for employee hours.   Ability to balance payroll and reconcile discrepancies in a tight time frame prior load to online payroll company
  • Process bonuses, special payments, and taxable cash and non-cash fringe benefits. 
  • Calculating and processing manual checks as required. 
  • Timely research and resolve payroll inquires from employees, HR, department managers, and other parties while maintaining top notch customer service. 
  • Other duties and special projects as assigned.


Payroll Analyst

  • Monitor weekly timesheets for errors, incomplete entries, missing employee sign-off’s or lack of supervisor approvals. Follow up with employees and/or supervisors to correct all deficiencies. Close/lock timesheets once all issues are resolved.
  • Ability to stay organized, multitask, and meet deadlines in a fast-paced environment.
  • Process tax exemption and direct deposit changes as requested by employees.
  • Assist with the entry of expense reimbursements, bonuses, taxable relocation, retro pay and other adjustments to regular pay as approved by HR.
  • Assist with processing the bi-weekly payroll in the online payroll company system so that payroll checks/direct deposits are issued on time and payroll registers distributed to appropriate parties.
  • Excellent written, verbal and interpersonal communication skills; must be able to work well with all levels of employees.
  • Assist with entry of new labor codes and maintenance of department access to labor codes in the time and attendance system.
  • Assist with the issuance of final payroll checks to terminated employees.
  • Assist with the maintenance of all payroll records and providing related information as needed for reporting, audits, tax returns and special requests.
  • Assist with the entry of payroll and tax information for generation and distribution of annual W-2 forms.
  • Assists with other payroll related projects and reporting as assigned.
  • Assists with weekly review of A/P checks, filing of paid invoices and other Account Payable tasks as assigned.
  • Assists with invoicing, posting of cash receipts and other Accounts Receivable tasks as assigned.
  • Ability to read and pull basic information from Employee Change Notices and other payroll documents to ensure accurate entry into online payroll company system.
  • Ability to effectively present information and respond to questions from co-workers, Human Resources and benefit administrators. 
  • Basic Excel skills required.
  • Ability to define problems, gather data, establish facts, and draw valid conclusions on routine matters.
  • Ability to work with internal and external customers to identify and solve problems.


Payroll Supervisor / Manager

  • Process owner for payroll process design
  • Manage the internal controls required to ensure payroll is done correctly
  • Monitor the payroll cycles and ensure that timesheets and other related pay data is processed on time.
  • Bring structure and process to off-cycle payroll payments.
  • Manage the payroll escalation process and ensure that employees and managers understand the important deadlines.
  • Manage the creation and communication of the payroll calendar.
  • Train supervisors on the timesheet submission process.
  • Manage the new hire orientation process as it relates to timesheet training.
  • Manage payroll budget and reconciliation of plan to actual variances.