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2016 Review of Paychex Flex

Paychex Flex is a scalable payroll product designed for both small business owners as well as large enterprise operations. Professional accountants will also find the product a good fit if they’re looking to offer payroll and related services to clients.


Paychex Flex

Best Fit: Paychex Flex is well suited for both businesses that wish to process payroll in-house as well as professional accounting firms wishing to offer payroll services to clients.

Product Strengths:

  • Product is available in two versions; Small Business and Enterprise
  • A mobile app is available that supports both iOS and Android devices
  • Product offers solid integration with a variety of applications
  • Good reporting options with built-in report writer functionality

Potential Limitations:

  • A la carte pricing could drive pricing up for some firms and businesses

Paychex Flex is a scalable payroll product designed for both small business owners as well as large enterprise operations. Professional accountants will also find the product a good fit if they’re looking to offer payroll and related services to clients.

From the 2016 Review of Professional Payroll Systems.

Basic System Functions: 5 Stars

Available in two versions; Paychex Flex for Small Businesses and Paychex Flex Enterprise for larger businesses, Paychex Flex offers a variety of payroll and related products on a single, integrated platform. Users can purchase Paychex Flex and add additional modules at any time. Available as an online product, Paychex Flex also offers the Paychex Flex Mobile app that can be used with iPhones or Android smart phones and tablets. The Paychex user interface is easily navigated in both the online and the mobile app. The main screen in the online version contains a series of function icons at the top of the screen that offer access to all of the functions currently subscribed to. Users can easily view all clients by simply scrolling through the available list. Multiple users can easily access the product at any time, and an unlimited number of employees are supported in the system as well.

Users can easily manage system access, with varying levels of system access available for both users and clients/employees. Payroll can be easily submitted from any device, with users able to submit from a different device, even if payroll was started using another device. Payroll can be set to be generated automatically, which is useful for businesses with little change in payroll from pay period to pay period. Users can easily access the cash requirements screen to determine the amount of funding necessary to complete payroll. A grid-style interface is also available to utilize during payroll data entry, to speed the process. The grid is also customizable, so users can choose what information is displayed on the grid.

Paychex Flex supports tax tables for all 50 states, and seamlessly integrates with Taxpay Payroll Tax Service, which handles all federal tax liability as well as federal unemployment taxes along with state and local tax requirements.

The product handles after-the-fact payroll processing, and includes a variety of payment options for business owners to take advantage of, including direct deposit, paper checks, paycards, and the ability to process laser check, including signature and paycheck insertion.

Reporting & Monitoring: 5 Stars

The Paychex Report Center offers users 140 reports that users can easily customize as needed. Users can create report packages that can be categorized as per-pay period, quarterly, or annually. Users can also create their own report packages using custom dates. The Paychex Report Writer, which is included in the product, allows users to further customize existing reports or create their own from scratch.

The reporting interface displays a version of the selected report on screen, with users able to choose from a variety of available formats. Custom options, to the right of the screen, provide users with access to custom search criteria. Reports can be saved as favorites for easy future access, and all reports can be exported to Excel, or saved as a PDF. Users can easily review both current and future payroll dates, and users have immediate access to payroll summary reports once payroll has been processed. Users also have the option to process tax and related payments in house, or use Paychex to automatically calculate and file taxes prior to the established due dates.

Integration/Import/Export: 5 Stars

Paychex offers a variety of payroll related applications that are designed to integrate with Paychex Flex. These include complete Human Resource functions, Employee Benefits, Accounting and Finance, Resources, and Partnerships. The Partnerships application works with professional accountants, offering a variety of accounting resources and tools accountants can use in conjunction with Paychex Flex. Integration with Taxpay and the Paychex Online HR Library provides easy tax processing as well as access to HR tools. Paychex Flex offers a variety of time collecting options, including badge, biometric reading, keypad, web entry or mobile phone entry. The General Ledger Service offers integration with a variety of accounting applications including Kashoo, QuickBooks Pro and QuickBooks Online, Sage 50, Datafaction, Creative Solutions, AccountEdge, and Intacct.

Help/Support: 5 Stars

Paychex Online offers good help functionality throughout the product. Each user is assigned their own client service advisor, which handles all support related issues. Technical support is available during regular business hours and email support can be accessed around the clock. Paychex offers a variety of training videos, tutorials, and FAQ’s as well as a host of accountant tools and resources that can utilized. All tax and related issues are updated by Paychex on a regular basis, ensuring product accuracy at all times.  

Client Self-Service Features: 5 Stars

Paychex Flex allows users to choose what level of access (if any) to offer clients through the Payroll Self-Service feature. Data access can include the ability for clients to enter time and related data. The employee dashboard allows employees to access personal payroll data such as pay stubs and W-2’s and well as direct deposit information and personal contact information.   Employment status, salary and benefit deductions can also be verified through the Payroll Self-Service feature. Both employees and clients can access the system, but employees can only access their own information.    

Advanced Features: 5 Stars

Paychex Flex supports both union payroll as well as certified payroll processing. Also available are a series of HR related applications, as well as HR Online, that is designed to work directly with Paychex Flex and offers features such as benefit administration, employee performance tools, and maintain a consistent onboarding process.

Summary & Pricing

Paychex Flex, from Paychex offers users a streamlined payroll solution that is designed to integrate with other Paychex product offerings, mentioned earlier. Paychex Flex is designed for small and mid-sized businesses, as well as for accounting professionals looking to offer payroll services. Product pricing is available upon request.

2015 Overall Rating: 5 Stars