Get The Best Startup Payroll System

Do you have a payroll system in place? Unwinding payroll and payroll tax problems can be complicated and expensive.

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As soon as your startup is ready to have employees, you need a payroll system. The risks of not having a good payroll and payroll tax system is pretty massive - payroll tax problems can be complicated and expensive to fix. Setting up a great startup payroll system from the start ensures that your payroll runs smoothly, all your federal and state payroll taxes are submitted on time and you stay out of trouble.


What to look for in a payroll system for your startup

Kruze Consulting has helped set up hundreds of startup payroll systems. Early-stage founders don't have time to deal with manual, non-strategic work. So picking a payroll provider who will automate as much as possible is key. AND, it turns out that most employees really like getting paid on time, and the right amount, so a system you can trust is also pretty important! Here is what to look for in a payroll system for your new company:

  1. Intuitive online interface. You don't have hours to try to find simple reporting or enter new employees. And you'd be surprised that some of the legacy payroll providers like you to FAX them new employee information. So go with a provider that actually gets the technology.
  2. Autopilot. The best payroll systems can run on autopilot, which means you don't have to manually log in and push buttons for each payroll cycle. Again, some legacy systems actually want you to do data-entry each and every time you run payroll. 
  3. Prefect payroll taxes. Look for a system that is totally automated in taking care of payroll taxes.
  4. Low cost. You shouldn't expect your payroll provider to be free, but it shouldn't cost too much. And for fast-growth startups, it's nice to have a provider where the pricing scales with your business' growth, so you don't pay too much when you are really small.
  5. Good customer support. If you are ever going to have a payroll question, it's going to be either right before payroll is due or when an employee comes with a question about their pay. You don't what to be left hanging in either situation! 
  6. Easy onboarding. Some of our clients add 10 to 30 employees a MONTH. Putting new hires into the system needs to be easy, or you'll end up having to hire someone just to do the new hire data-entry!
  7. Benefit integration. At some point your employees are going to want benefits. Not only is it a hassle to manually manage benefits with your payroll (imagine having to login and do data-entry each time someone makes a change in their 401(k) deferral), you might actually take on legal liability for getting benefits right. So choose a provider where they can handle the back-end benefits integrations for you.
  8. Simple accounting. As a CPA to many, many startups, you know I care deeply about getting the books right. Some systems integrate with accounting systems well - others do not. Assuming you don't want to pay thousands of dollars to get your bookkeeping done, or even worse, spend a day a month dealing with your books and payroll, choose a modern provider that can API into your accounting software.

Which payroll system do we recommend?

We only recommend a few providers (in fact, we won't even work with some!)

One of the top systems for startups is Gusto. We love the autopilot feature because it runs payroll automatically unless you need to make a change. Autopilot makes sure your employees are always paid - and happy. Additionally, it’s easy to use and handles federal and state payroll taxes seamlessly and automatically. Better yet, it’s competitively priced and has the best support team around if you encounter problems. We happen to think that we are the best Gusto accountant - talk to us to find out why!

Other solid choices for early-stage companies include Rippling, Justworks, and Trinet. Rippling is different in that they also offer a lot of turnkey IT systems management, so that when  you hire a new employee it is easy for you to provision a computer and other cloud software for them. Justworks and Trinet are PEOs, which are generally a bit more expensive, but do offer other features and benefits administration that work for some early-stage companies.

Want to know more?

Payroll services for startups How to plan for payroll taxes Video: Kruze Consulting and Gusto (formerly ZenPayroll)

Contact us to learn more about our services.

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Competitively priced for high-growth companies

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Financial Consulting

Staff Accountant $85
Senior Staff Accountant $110
Controller $140
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Venture Debt $300
CFO $300
Tax Advisory $395

Startup 409A Valuation

Seed $1,500
Seed A $2,000
Seed B $2,500
Seed C $3,000

Client testimonials

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We're huge fans of Vanessa and the folks at Kruze Consulting. They set up our books, finances, and other operations, and are constantly organized and on top of things. As a startup, you have to focus on your product and customers, and Kruze takes care of everything else (which is a massive sigh of relief). I highly highly highly recommend working with Vanessa and her team.

Vivek Sodera
Vivek Sodera
Co-Founder @ Superhuman
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Kruze's financial infrastructure empowers me to focus on my team, our products, and our customers. As an entrepreneur I couldn't be happier.

Jake Lodwick
Jake Lodwick
Creator of Vimeo
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Avochato has been growing rapidly in the past year – in fact, too quickly for us to keep up with books, taxes, and budgeting for growth. Partnering with Kruze Consulting has been fantastic to manage, track, and analyze our finances while we continue focusing on building our customer base. Kruze’s team knows what startups need.

Alex De Simone
Alex De Simone
CEO @ Avochato
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I had a great experience working with Kruze Consulting when we raised Series A. They know what VCs need to see, and how to present a startup’s books and finances. If you are going to raise venture capital, you need experts like Kruze.

Chris Mansi
Chris Mansi
CEO @ Viz.ai
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Kruze Consulting is the perfect Accounting, Finance and Tax partner for Los Angeles Startups. Kruze delivers exceptional monthly reporting and financial projections. When we need help with benefits or payroll, Kruze solves our problems. Kruze does our taxes for a fraction of what previous accountants have charged. Thank you Kruze for being a great partner.

Brett O'Brien
Brett O'Brien
CEO @ FLYR
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Being a repeat tech entrepreneur, I know how challenging it is to find the ideal CFO - not only is it often expensive to find the right one, but CFOs who combine expertise with scrappiness, market vision and perspective with detail orientation and 'roll up your sleeves' execution is near impossible for an early stage company. So I've been thrilled to work with Kruze Consulting, who not only provide all the ideal characteristics of a top-tier tech CFO, but also live and breathe entrepreneurship themselves. I've known Scott and Vanessa for many years and their deep personal integrity and strong reputation in the industry and made it an easy decision to work with them again.

Tina Fitch
Tina Fitch
CEO @ HobNob
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NIH, NSF, and SBIR grant compliance can add a lot of overhead for a start-up. The Kruze team makes it easy, so we can spend our time growing the business instead of shoveling paperwork.

Charlie Silver
Charlie Silver
CEO @ Mission Bio
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As a startup, it’s incredibly important to keep track of where our money is coming from and where it’s being spent. Kruze Consulting really helps keep our books and taxes in order so that we can focus on the core business. Extremely responsive and very professional, the accountants at Kruze Consulting are a pleasure to work with. We’d highly recommend their services.

Peter Lai
Peter Lai
CEO @ Emburse

About Us

A CPA Firm Specialized in Startup Accounting & Finance

A CPA Firm Specialized in Startup Accounting & Finance

Startups are our niche, and our passion. Our clients have raised over half a billion in venture capital financing in the past 12 months. We are one of only a few accounting firms that specialize in funded early-stage companies - we only offer financial and tax services to fast growing startups in the Seed, Series A, Series B and Series C stages.

The Right Accounting Partner for Your Startup’s Next Round

The Right Accounting Partner for Your Startup’s Next Round

We know how to de-risk your startup’s next venture capital round. Our team makes sure you are ready to fly through your next VC’s accounting, HR and tax due diligence. And when you use us as your bookkeeper, we set up and keep up-to-date a due diligence folder so you can get that next round of fundraising.

A Leader in Cloud Accounting Software

A Leader in Cloud Accounting Software

Our practice is built on best of breed cloud accounting software like QuickBooks, Xero, Netsuite, Gusto, Zenefits, Expensify, Avalara, Brex iand Bill.com. Technology makes us more efficient, saving our clients money and letting us offer higher value services like FP&A modeling, 409A valuation and venture debt consulting. Startups deserve to work with CPAs using modern software.

Trusted by Top Venture Investors

Trusted by Top Venture Investors

Top angel investors and VCs refer Kruze because they trust us to give the right advice. Our clients are portfolio companies of top technology and Silicon Valley investors, including Y-Combinator, Kleiner, Sequoia, Khsola, Launch, Techstars and more. With us, your books and taxes are in order when it’s time to raise another round of venture financing.

What types of startups does Kruze Consulting usually work with?

What types of startups does Kruze Consulting usually work with?

Kruze Consulting works with a variety of funded Delaware C-Corps, but the majority of our companies have secured Seed, Series A, Series B and Series C. We look to partner with our clients, going beyond the typical accounting relationship and seeking to provide a higher level advisory role. We feel honored to be a part of making the world a better place, even if it’s one debit and credit at a time.

Accounting, Finance, Taxes, & Payroll all in one solution

Accounting, Finance, Taxes, & Payroll all in one solution

Startup CFO services, startup accounting and bookkeeping services, startup annual taxes, expense reports, payroll, benefits: we've got you covered. Custom tailored dashboards can be provided weekly or monthly, depending on your preference and plan. Founders are often so busy building their company that they don’t have time to take care of their finances. Traditionally, these companies have had to work with a basket of people to get their work done, including bookkeepers, accountants, AP clerks, CFOs, consultants, and tax accountants. At Kruze Consulting, our founders have one point person, saving time and money.

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