Square Payroll Services Review 2022

Square Payroll Review: Square Payroll is an easy-to-use payroll solution for small businesses that rely on hourly workers. It can be used to send employees their paychecks as well as manage time-tracking, tax filing and withholding, and administration of benefits such as retirement savings and health insurance.

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Square Payroll is different from the rest because of its transparent pricing, affordable contractor plan, and flexible payment options. For example, employees can receive a portion of their paycheck before payday. You’ll have access to additional features if you use other products like Square’s point-of-sale system and a Square Card (the company’s debit cards),

Deciding factors


  • Contractors and employees: $35 monthly base fee plus $5 monthly fee per employee.

  • Contractors only: $5 monthly per person paid.

Tax filing and payments?

Yes, payroll taxes are automatically calculated, withheld, and sent to federal and state agencies.

Do offers benefit administration add-ons?

Yes, it provides employer-sponsored plans through partners for an additional cost. Options include:

  • Workers’ compensation insurance.

  • Health care, dental and vision insurance.

  • Retirement benefits.

  • Health savings account (HSA).

  • Flexible spending account (FSA).

Employee access to the portal?

Yes, employees have access to Square’s employee portal through an app called Team. On Team, employees can:

  • Clock in and out.

  • Track hours and view timecards.

  • Track historical earnings.

  • Update personal information.

  • Complete onboarding tasks, like filling out and submitting W-4 forms.

Live support?

Yes, by email at any time or by phone 6 a.m. through 6 p.m. PT, Monday through Friday.

Easy to use?

Yes. Square has a modern, intuitive user interface with a mobile app that can be accessed by both employers and employees.

What is Square Payroll?

Basics of Payroll

Square Payroll supports four types of payroll frequency: monthly, weekly, and two pay periods per week. The company calculates taxes automatically based on your location, and sends you year-end W-2s. Payouts are usually made five days after the payroll day. However, employers have the option to pay employees 24/7 if funds transfer from the Square Balance account of the employer to the Cash App.


Square’s partners can provide benefits to employees for an additional fee. You can also use providers that you have chosen from elsewhere. Square Payroll allows employers to offer retirement savings and health care options to employees, even if they don’t sponsor any benefits.

Management of teams

All Square Payroll customers get access to Square’s Team App and all labor-management tools of the Team Plus plan, which normally comes with a monthly charge. Square’s Team app allows employees to submit their availability. Managers can also create schedules and employees can receive a copy of their shift schedule immediately. The Team App allows employees to check their earnings and access a portion before they go to work. This access to information and funds is especially helpful for employees in service industries where pay and schedules can change.


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Pay employees and contractors 

Starts at $40 per month.

  • $35 monthly subscription fee.

  • $5 per employee per month.

  • Unlimited payroll runs.

  • Generate and file W-2s and 1099s.

  • Automated state and federal tax filings and payments.

  • Track and import tips.

  • Employee time tracking, plus PTO tracking.

  • Run payroll automatically.

  • Automatically calculate benefit deductions and contributions.

  • Handle garnishments.

  • Reporting.

  • QuickBooks Online and Square POS integrations.

Pay contractors only

Starts at $5 per month.

  • No base monthly software fee.

  • $5 per contractor per month.

  • Unlimited payroll runs.

  • Generate and file 1099s.

  • QuickBooks Online and Square POS integrations.

  • Reporting.

  • Time tracking.

Square Payroll: Benefits

Straightforward pricing with no contracts

Square’s transparent pricing structure makes it easy to estimate the cost of Square. ADP is one example of a competitor that doesn’t publish pricing information. It’s relatively inexpensive compared to other options. Square does not lock you into any contract and you can cancel at no additional cost. Square allows businesses to cancel their subscription at no cost. This could be an ideal solution for seasonal businesses.

Small teams can have a contractor-only deal that is affordable

Square’s contractor-only service for payroll is a great option for small businesses that have only contractors. Instead of paying a flat monthly rate and per-person fees, you only pay $5 per person per month.

Flexible payment options available for employees

Square Payroll employees who use direct deposit to get paid within five business days of each pay period’s end provided that the payroll processing is completed on time. There are also other payment options. Square owns Cash App, which allows employees to instantly receive payments if they use the Cash App.

Employees can get cash as soon as they need it, up to 50% of their wages, up to $200 per transfer. This service is provided by Square at no cost to the employer. For a fee of 1%, employees can transfer money to the Cash App or a linked bank account or debit card for free.

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Drawbacks to Square Payroll

Certain features may require the use of other Square products

Square Payroll is available to all customers. However, you won’t be able to access the entire Square Payroll ecosystem if you don’t. If you have a Square point of sale system, you can import and track tips and commissions to Square Payroll automatically. This could take longer if you don’t have Square POS. Square Balance accounts allow you to make immediate or next-day payments to your employees. Without one, direct deposits to land could take up to five days.

Reporting is limited

Square Payroll is not the best option if you are looking for a payroll system that offers specific reports. It can be used to create basic reports, such as to show employee totals, paycheck details, or company totals for a specific date range, but not to provide more detail about taxes, garnishments, or labor distribution.

Square Payroll Alternatives

Gusto: Access to your early paychecks faster

Employees can access their paychecks before they go to pay. However, unlike Square Payroll’s advances employees can transfer the money to a Gusto bank account or Gusto debit card without any fees. Gusto Cashout is a feature that employees can access up to 40% of their monthly paychecks, and it’s available in 40 states. Employees can access the money up to twice per month. As soon as the next business day passes, deposits are available in employees’ bank accounts. Square Payroll allows employees to access their paychecks immediately, with no fees, if money is deposited into the Cash App account. However, bank account deposits and debit card deposits are subject to a 1% fee. Gusto is $39 per month, plus $6 per person per month.

Paycom offers better reporting

Square Payroll’s reporting features are quite basic. Paycom offers more detail. Reports can be run on approved expenses, wages, taxes, garnishments, and workers’ compensation. Paycom does not list its prices online, unlike Square Payroll.

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