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2016 Review of 1099-Etc. AMS Payroll

Payroll Software from AMS (Advanced Micro Solutions) is an add-on module to their popular W-2/1099 Forms Filer software. Best suited to smaller businesses, the product can easily process both current payroll, as well as after-the-fact payroll.


AMS Payroll

Advanced Micro Solutions


Best Fit: AMS Payroll is well-designed for small to mid-sized businesses as well as accounting firms offering payroll services to clients.  

Product Strengths:

  • Affordably priced for even the smallest accounting firm
  • Product offers excellent integration with other AMS products
  • Product processes both live and after-the-fact payroll
  • Suitable for both small business owners as well as accounting firms offering payroll services

Potential Limitations:

  • Product is not optimally designed to be used as a stand-alone system

Payroll Software from AMS (Advanced Micro Solutions) is an add-on module to their popular W-2/1099 Forms Filer software. Best suited to smaller businesses, the product can easily process both current payroll, as well as after-the-fact payroll.

From the 2016 Review of Professional Payroll Systems.

Basic System Functions: 4.5 Stars

The main menu of AMS offers access to all installed modules, which include both W-2/1099 Forms Filer and AMS Payroll, along with any other modules that are currently installed. Users can easily access AMS Payroll by simply clicking on the option at the left of the main screen. The AMS Payroll user interface is easily navigated, with menu options at the top of the screen that provide access to system functions such as Module, Payer, Deposits, View, Input, Reports, Forms, ACA, Options, Help, and Quit. Users can simply choose a payer to begin processing payroll for that particular client. AMS Payroll works in conjunction with W-2/1099 Forms Filer to process both live and after-the-fact payroll, as well as non-employee compensation.

AMS Payroll supports up to 1,999 payers or clients, and up to 9,999 employees for each payer set up in the system. The product also supports direct deposit, and currently supports over 30 different check types. There are 40 user-defined fields that can be used to track both standard as well as unique deduction types, and users can easily print checks individually or by a date range.

Once the information has been entered into the system, it is then transferred to the correct form for processing. AMS Payroll is installed on desktop computers and can be installed on a network server as well. Multiple users can easily access the system at any time.

MICR checks can be easily printed on blank check stock, and all payroll and related data can be easily exported directly to W-2/1099 Forms Filer for future processing. Designed to work with other AMS products, the vendor also offers add-on modules such as 1042-S Filer, ACA Filer, E-Filer Direct, and Software Generated Forms. All of these modules offer easy integration.

Reporting & Monitoring: 4.25 Stars

AMS Payroll supports payroll processing for all 50 states, plus the District of Columbia and Puerto Rico, and supports a multitude of federal payroll forms such as 940, 941, 943, 944, and 1040 SchH, along with a long list of others. The product also supports a variety of state forms including Quarterly Contribution Reports.   Along with the ability to electronically file 940, 941, and 944 federal forms, users can also electronically file quarterly returns for 29 states.

AMS Payroll offers decent reporting options, but contains limited ability to customize reports. Standard payroll reports included in the product include Payer/Tax Summary, Employee Detail, and Worker’s Compensation. AMS Payroll will also create a SSN verification file, if necessary. A Certified Payroll report is also available in the product.

Integration/Import/Export: 4.25 Stars

AMS Payroll is part of the AMS suite of products and is an add-on module for the W-2/1099 Form Filer, which is required in order to use any of the other available modules. Users can easily start with W-2/1099 Forms Filer and AMS Payroll and add other modules as needed, or purchase the entire system if desired. AMS Payroll can easily import data from third-party applications such as QuickBooks, Sage 50, Excel, or using tab-delimited text files, and can also export data to a text file or QuickBooks General Journal.

Help/Support: 5 Stars

Like all AMS products, AMS Payroll offers users solid help functionality throughout the product. Product tutorials are available for new product users to review that cover basic system functions. Software manuals are also available, and can be easily downloaded and printed if desired. Technical support is available during regular business hours, and users can also access support via fax or email if desired. FAQ’s are available for users to browse, with questions divided into categories for easy access. Product updates can be easily downloaded directly from the AMS website, and other utilities and tools are available to download as well.

Client Self Service Features: N/A

AMS Payroll is currently available as a desktop/network system, and is installed on-premises. The product currently does not offer remote access to the product, and mobile applications are not available, nor are client portals.

Advanced Features: 4 Stars

The Affordable Care Act Filer is available for employers with over 50 full-time employees, and is designed to ensure that companies are compliant with all ACA regulations. The Affordable Care Act Filer automatically fills in Form 1095-b, Form 1095-C, and 1094 transmittal forms, and offers easy electronic filing for all created forms. Users can utilize the user-defined fields to track and manage specialized payroll deductions, offers the ability to create and print client letters within the system. There are currently no HR functions supported in AMS Payroll.

Summary & Pricing

The primary function of AMS products is form filing, with AMS Payroll offered as an add-on module. Designed to be used with W2/1099 Forms Filer, AMS Payroll offers both live and after-the-fact payroll processing, and handles contractor payments as well. All components of the system are sold separately, with W2/1099 required to run AMS Payroll. W/-2/1099 is currently priced at $79.00, with AMS Payroll running $129.00. Additional modules such as E-File Direct, Forms Filer Plus, and ACA Filer are also available, with costs varying.  

2016 Rating: 4.5 Stars