Friday, May 18, 2012

Payroll Software In The Cloud For Small Business

There’s a myth that’s grown up with cloud computing that suggests that the cloud only works for large companies. Nothing could be further from the truth. That story probably got started because major enterprises pioneered the move to the cloud. Today, the cloud is as much or more benefit to the SMB as to multinational corporations.

Online Payroll Software starts at just $10/moOne good example is the SaaS (Software as a Service) Patriot Software. Patriot offers payroll software, tax filing, time and attendance, employee self-server, and human resources software for businesses operating with 50 or fewer employees in the United States. What all this software has in common is that it is hosted in the Patriot data center cloud, not on your PCs or local servers.

You don’t need IT infrastructure to run your payroll system. An Internet connected computer will give you the access to the cloud that you need. That means you aren’t stuck at a dedicated terminal or your desktop computer. You can take your laptop with you and run payroll from wherever you need to be at no additional charge.

Patriot PAY lets you pay your employees the way you want to. You can define your pay frequency, create an unlimited number of earning codes, define your overtime multiplier, and pay with multiple methods such as cash, handwritten checks, printed checks, direct deposit and payroll debit card. Create an unlimited number of user-defined deductions, such as medical, 401K, expenses, etc. Also create company match / contribution rules that can stand alone or be tied to deductions. All of this is done quickly, easily and securely online.

If you are running a small business, you may have gotten started with a manual system and then switched to a software package that runs on your PCs or servers. You know that there are costs above and beyond the initial cost of the hardware and software that is needed to keep your payroll system up to date. This can get into a considerable amount of labor to run nightly and weekly backups to protect your data, maintenance fixes and version upgrades to the software, loading new payroll tax tables and repair and upgrade of the computer equipment.

All of that grief goes away with cloud hosted solutions, also known as Software as a Service. The actual payroll software runs on a sophisticated cloud server system within the Patriot Software data center. All of the data and servers are housed in a SAS 70 Type II compliant facility that features redundant telecom backbones to the Internet, battery backup augmented by diesel generator backup, and full security. The operations center runs 24/7 to ensure that any problems are caught and fixed quickly. Most small companies have limited security on their systems and little or no support after business hours.

Besides physical security, there is electronic security to protect your data. In this case, Patriot Software uses secure socket layer (SSL) encryption just like banks and credit card companies. The data is protected by 256-bit encryption during transmission. The data servers that save your information are not directly connected to the Internet, so no one else can access your information unless they are physically standing in front of the servers.

What you need to ensure access to the system is a robust dedicated Internet access service with a second way to connect, wired or wireless, to ensure that you can get to the cloud when you need to. Everything else is provided for you on a cost per “seat” or “license” per month basis. This gives you the advantage of knowing your costs and buying only the level of service you need to support current business activity. When things pick up substantially, you simply add order up more capability from the cloud. There is no need to go out and invest in an expensive server system and software to run it just so you’ll have the capability when needed. Cloud services are on a pay as you go basis.

Patriot goes one step further by not requiring any long term contracts for their payroll system. If you want to cancel you can do that without penalty and go back to the way you did business before. Chances are, once you move to the cloud, you’ll like it enough to stay in the cloud.

Are you intrigued by this advanced approach to handling payroll but unsure if it’s for you? Try the system free for 7 days using a sample account pre-filled with sample data that you can experiment with. If you like the way it works, you can go ahead and become a customer. Otherwise, the sample account will be deleted at the end of the trial period and you own nothing. You don’t even need a credit card to give it a try. Go ahead and try Patriot PAY cloud-based payroll software now.

Click to get more information and view sample videos.

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