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2016 Review of Thomson Reuters Accounting CS Payroll

Accounting CS Payroll part of the Thomson Reuters CS Professional Suite and is designed to work in firms of any size. The product is available as an on-premise solution or as a hosted product.


Accounting CS Payroll

Best Fit: Designed for professional accounting firms that process a large volume of client payroll; it’s best suited for those using other CS Professional Suite of products.

Product Strengths:

  • Product is scalable, offering room for growth
  • Provides seamless integration with CS Professional Suite
  • Excellent report processing and customization available
  • Client portals available

Potential Limitations:

  • Not well suited for firms not using other CS Professional Suite applications

Accounting CS Payroll part of the Thomson Reuters CS Professional Suite and is designed to work in firms of any size. The product is available as an on-premise solution or as a hosted product.

From the 2016 Review of Professional Payroll Systems.

Basic System Functions: 5 Stars

Accounting CS Payroll is optimally designed to work with other CS Professional Suite of applications. The Payroll Home Dashboard offers users access to a variety of payroll related tasks and information, including payroll forms, form filing addresses, tax payment information, and a tax calendar. A navigation pane to the left of the screen offers access to other available system functions. All firm clients are part of a single database, making it easy to access and process payroll for all clients.

Users can quickly add both clients and employees using the templates that are included in the product, and the Edit Multiple Employee Wizard makes it easy to adjust pay rates and benefits for multiple employees simultaneously. The product offers a variety of automated steps make it easy to process data. Accounting CS Payroll offers users multiple data entry formats and includes the spreadsheet style Rapid tab that is grid style. Batch entry is also available for those that process a high number of payroll checks.    

Multiple users can easily access the product simultaneously, even accessing the same client at the same time. Designed for scalability, even the smallest firm can utilize the product and simply scale up as more clients are added.  

Along with the main dashboard, each client and/or employee has access to their own custom dashboard as well. The product automatically determines tax jurisdiction for each employee entered in the system, and user-defined custom fields allows users to easily track a variety of data that is not included with standard payroll reporting. Accounting CS Payroll offers a variety of payroll delivery methods, with users able to simply print checks, use MICR check printing functionality, direct deposit and the ability to upload checks to a client portal for them to print in-house at their convenience. Cross-client printing is also available, which allows firms to easily customize the check printing process for each client, with the end result the ability to print checks for multiple clients simultaneously. Firms can easily customize client access to Accounting CS Payroll, offering advanced system access, to limiting access to simply reviewing payroll documentation and pay stubs, and the employee self-service option allows client employees to easily view W-2 and pay stubs online at any time, even from a mobile device.  

The product also supports the Affordable Care Act, creating all the forms and filings necessary for clients that are considered Applicable Large Employers.

Reporting & Monitoring: 5 Stars

Accounting CS Payroll contains excellent reporting options, with users able to easily select reports and enter various reports filter from the easily navigated report screen. Built-in report templates make it easy to run a single report, and the built-in custom report writer allows users to easily customize existing reports and other documents including statements, invoices, check layouts, and letters. The custom report writer can also be used to create from-scratch reports as well. Custom report groups can be created to bundle a group of reports together, with the ability to send this group of reports to multiple clients. All system reports can be exported as an Excel spreadsheet or saved as a PDF.

Both federal and state tax forms can be processed using the cross-client process mentioned earlier, with the built-in tax calendar displaying all payroll related due dates. The product offers support for all federal tax forms including W-2, 940, 941, 941-X, 943, 943-X, 944, and 945, with local payroll tax forms processed for a number of states including AL, CA, CO, KY, MI, MO, NJ, NY, OH, PA, and WV, with checks or electronic tax payments automatically generated.

Integration/Import/Export: 5 Stars

Accounting CS Payroll is designed to be used with other CS Professional Suite and offers seamless integration with those applications. Time clock applications supported in the product include SwipeClock, TimeRack, Qqest Software Systems, Inc., Kronos, Points North, Restaurant Magic Software and Sierra Computer Solutions. Users can also import time date into the product using ASCII or XML formats.

Help/Support: 5 Stars

Accounting CS offers good help and support tools throughout the product. Templates and wizards are found throughout, and make it easy for users to quickly set up clients, enter payroll, and process reports. Users also have access to videos, whitepapers, and product demos that can be downloaded after registering with the vendor. The Help & How-To Center offers access to product support, as well as quick access to product downloads, along with the product knowledgebase and other tools. Custom training options are available as well.

Client Self-Service Features: 5 Stars

The NetClient CS portal allows firms to provide their clients with easy access to all payroll functionality, including the ability to enter time remotely, view check stubs, deliver payroll reports directly to clients, and even the ability to deliver payroll to clients electronically, with clients than printing checks in-house. 

Advanced Features: 4.75 Stars

The availability of user defined fields allows users to set up special calculations such as union payroll, federal tax levy detail and weighted average overtime calculations.  Accounting CS Payroll also has a series of strategic partners that offer additional payroll and related service functionality, including The Harford, which offers Workers’ Compensation insurance and payroll debit cards. 

Summary & Pricing

Accounting CS Payroll is designed for firms of any size that are currently or plan to use CS Professional Suite of Products from Thomson Reuters. The product is scalable, and designed for those processing a large number of payrolls each month for clients of all sizes. Pricing for Accounting CS is dependent on the number of clients as well as additional add-on modules that are purchased, with pricing available from an Accounting CS Payroll representative. Annual renewal pricing is based on a percentage of the original purchase price.

2016 Overall Rating: 5 Stars