For many QSRs, payroll is a basic administrative task and nothing more. You upload employee hours into the payroll system, then the system prints paychecks every couple of weeks. That’s that. But a payroll system can do so much more for you including some things you may not even be aware of, like retaining employees and saving you money on operating costs.

So, as the new year kicks off, take some time to review your business and determine what changes can be made to attract more employees and maintain a healthy bottom line. Start by asking yourself, “Are you outgrowing your in-house payroll? Are you looking for bottom line savings? Do you want a payroll vendor with more features?” If your answer was yes to any of the above questions, then it may be time to consider switching to a new vendor.

Here’s why it might be time for a new payroll provider.

More efficient for you and your employees

No matter what payroll system you use, you probably print paper checks. You may also offer your employees with a direct deposit option if they have a bank account. For a long time, this was enough. But online commerce has become a basic necessity, and cash and paper checks just don’t work for everyone. Until recently, employees without bank accounts had to jump through extra hoops to cash paychecks. In an article from QSR Magazine, George Sanchez, SVP and Sales Director for FSV Payment Systems, described what one employee had to do to cash her check:

“She had to catch two buses to work, and another bus to a check-cashing store, which charged her two percent of her pay for that service. She then took a bus to a business where she could transfer money to her family, another bus to the grocery store to do her shopping, then her bus home. It took her six hours.”

In addition to paper checks and direct deposit, your payroll provider should offer the option for employees to receive a payroll card—a prepaid card that paychecks are automatically deposited into. Payroll cards offer a significant quality-of-life convenience for many QSR employees, and if your payroll system doesn’t offer them, consider looking for one that does.

NOTE: While prepaid cards are convenient for employees, they can be high-maintenance for above-store leaders. If you are going to offer prepaid cards, ensure a system is employed to support the teams for pay card-related issues.

Ability to integrate directly with existing QSR platforms

QSR margins have always been tight, so it’s crucial to keep operating costs low. In-house payroll systems can save money for small restaurants, but as your business grows and you hire more employees, those operating costs can add up quickly. Third-party payroll providers can operate more efficiently, saving you money. Best of all, many payroll providers can integrate directly with QSR platforms, so making a switch is hassle-free.

A final — and often overlooked — benefit of payroll providers is the insight they can give you. Robust payroll services like Delaget Books can support all of your restaurants and offer all sorts of labor reports — from employee hours and overtime to borrowed employees to break violations. More visibility over how your workforce is operating can save you time and money.

Don’t let payroll be just another back-of-the-house necessity. Payroll services can give you the tools to maintain a happy workforce, while simultaneously giving you the data you need to make better decisions about labor.

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