Small business owners wear many hats and can spend too much time in one area of managing their business, and not enough working on growing and improving their business. One of the biggest culprits of this is in payroll.

Payroll can be tedious and time consuming, and errors could be costly. Add in the stress of the COVID-19 pandemic, and even less time is available for other initiatives. Imagine all the things you could do if you reallocated that time elsewhere.

But, payroll has to get done, so what are your options? Thankfully, one option is already at your disposal — your accountant. Outsourcing your payroll to your accounting firm means you take the majority of the work off your plate, you get a reliable partner who will handle all the data and ensure it’s accurate, and you can worry less about possible costly tax penalties.

Your accountant knows and has studied all the recent pandemic-related legislation, and can help you navigate its complexities. The last thing you need during this time is the IRS at your door for payroll issues.

Here are the top four reasons to consider your accountant for your payroll.

Time is money: During the pandemic, you’ve likely been looking for ways to do more with less or manage the ever-evolving nature of lockdowns, supply issues and staffing. Even during a normal year, payroll takes a lot of data, a lot of time, and a lot of attention to detail. Whether you’re calculating payroll, preparing checks and paystubs, generating reports, or filing payroll related taxes and returns, you can easily eat up a good chunk of time. And we know, time is money. Your accountant can take the burden off your shoulders and give you back your most valuable asset — time.

Reliability and accuracy are essential: With payroll, errors can add up quick and so can the costly penalties. Your accountant knows the law, they’re up-to-date on tax regulations and recent legislation related to COVID-19, and they can help you ensure you follow the law even as things are turbulent and changing. Plus, you won’t have to worry about who’s going to manage payroll if you or a member of your team is out for medical or other emergencies. You receive consistent, up-to-date service when you need it.

You get more than just payroll: Your accountant can help you beyond just your weekly paystubs. They can help you use your payroll reporting capabilities to understand labor costs; how to better track employee time; manage benefits and pre-tax deductions; and offer assistance with human resource issues. Plus, when you work with your accountant, your payroll gets factored into your monthly accounting, bookkeeping and tax services creating greater efficiencies. Having one point of contact for your business’s financial processes is invaluable.

Your services can scale up as you do: When you work with your accountant for payroll, growth is more easily managed because your accountant knows your goals and how they will impact each financial area of your business. You won’t have to switch payroll companies if you outgrow the one you have or, if your needs become more complex, you won’t have to figure out how that impacts your payroll yourself. As the pandemic continues on, you can get a better handle on how staffing changes will impact your bottom line and your growth goals.

In a pandemic, you need all the assistance you can get. Your accountant can help you get and stay organized during times of crisis; document and define processes to maintain accountability; save you valuable time and resources that you can spend elsewhere; and protect your business from potential costly payroll errors. 

Charlie Miracle is a certified public accountant with Cordell, Neher & Company PLLC in Wenatchee. He earned his accounting degree from Central Washington University and his MBA from Washington State University. He started his career with CNC in 1992, left the firm in 1998 to join a local manufacturing company as controller and later chief financial officer. During his years as CFO he amassed experience with complex accounting issues including mergers and acquisitions, international financial statement consolidations, debt restructuring and SEC reporting. Miracle rejoined CNC in 2018 and was promoted to principal in 2020. He leads the Client Accounting Services department. He can be reached at 663-1661 or charlie@cnccpa.com.