What is Square Payroll?

Square Payroll offers small businesses an outsourced, affordable, customizable, and fully integrated payroll service. Square’s services go well beyond simply capturing employees’ hours and calculating wages. The payroll tools support team management, deal with tips and commissions, manage timecards, and can manage either W2s for direct hire employees or 1099s for contracted and flexible workers. It will also automatically complete your quarterly and annual tax filings.

Square was a US company founded in 2009 and headquartered in San Francisco. The parent company is now known as Block, Inc., with over 5,000 employees, although it still uses the name Square for its small business products. When it first began operations, Square focused on making it easy for people to accept credit card payments with a free card reader and solely focused on point-of-sale transactions. In the past thirteen years, the company has expanded into integrated solutions that assist small businesses in accessing the tools they need to run their business efficiently. Square now offers financial services, commerce, POS products, customer loyalty programs, and comprehensive payroll support.

Square Payroll offers a complete payroll management system, although you can choose whether to utilize all the functionality or not. Employees have personalized online accounts to update their personal information, log hours, and view their tax forms and payslips. Timecards are imported from a Square app or your chosen third-party application, workers’ compensation insurance is synced with your payroll, and the payroll automatically synchronizes with your accounting tools. Payrolls can be run across multiple states and locations and cater to brick-and-mortar establishments or virtual, hybrid, and home-based workers. Employee payments can be made by check, direct deposit, or through the peer-to-peer payment application, Cash App.

Square Payroll, being cloud-based, operates from any device, allowing team management, pay runs, and paused billing to be accessed from anywhere you have your mobile phone. Employees also gain a personalized online account to update their personal information, log hours and view their tax forms and payslips. While Square will manage the payments through their payments gateway, there is no obligation to do so, allowing you to choose your preferred third-party payments gateway.

What popular features do you get with Square Payroll?

  • No annual commitment is required
  • Accurate and timely tax filings
  • Simple reports provided
  • No hidden fees
  • Simplicity of use

  • Access to Squares HR partners
  • Payments can be made anytime
  • Unlimited payroll runs
  • Competitive pricing

  • Hourly, flat-rate, or salary payments
  • Four different payroll frequencies supported
  • Ability to pause subscription anytime

Customer Support is available at Square Payroll

Square Payroll offers a self-help portal sorted by products or topics, consisting of videos, articles, and getting-started guides. You can also contact the customer support team via social media, live chat, email, and phone. The support team is available during US business hours from 6 am to 6 pm Monday to Friday, Pacific time.


What kind of business is Square Payroll ideal for?

Square Payroll is aimed directly at small to medium-sized businesses, whether brick-and-mortar establishments, virtual operations, or solopreneurs. It is particularly useful for an organization paying nationally distributed teams or remote workers. Paying the relatively low monthly fee and low cost per employee relieves a small business of the arduous and time-consuming task of managing payroll and its attendant filing requirements while ensuring regulatory compliance. You can pause subscriptions at any time without penalty, and if your workforce is composed solely of contractors, you pay no monthly fee, only the per-person cost.

Pros and Cons

  • A transparent pricing structure with no hidden fees
  • Pause your subscription at any time without penalty
  • No annual commitment required
  • Weekly, every two weeks, twice-monthly, or monthly payments supported
  • One-off payments are possible outside of the regular payroll calendar
  • Automatic tax calculations based on location
  • Handles your quarterly and annual payroll tax filings
  • Copes with W2s and 1099s
  • Manages healthcare and retirement benefits

  • Basic customized reporting only; lacking in advanced payroll insight
  • Uses other Square applications, although you can select third-party apps
  • Debit card and bank account deposits attract a small fee

People like you also researched

Here are some products we think might be a good fit based on what people like you viewed.

Most Recommended
  • Unlimited payroll runs
  • Automated payroll tax filing
  • Financial and health benefits
  • Employee self-service portal
Our Score
Read Review
  • Management of international contractor payments
  • Online hiring and onboarding tools
  • Automated payroll runs
  • An easy-to-use integrated platform
Our Score
Read Review
  • Dynamic paystubs with helpful information
  • Automatic salary update feature
  • Multiple labor codes for analysis
  • Automatic new hire state filing
Our Score
Read Review

How much does Square Payroll cost?

*based on information provided by the vendor. Actual cost may vary.

Square Payroll offers a simple and transparent pricing structure that caters to two business models. If you have ordinary employees and contractors within your business, you pay a monthly subscription and a fee per person paid. If you utilize only contractors, you pay no monthly subscription and only the amount per contractor paid.

Both options offer unlimited monthly pay runs, with cancellation available at any time. All 1099 or W2s are mailed, customer support is included, and payments are made by check, direct deposit, or Cash App. Free seasonal inactivity forms part of the core offering. See below for the additional services that a monthly subscription buys you.

Plan Pay Employees & Contractors Contractors Only
Cost Monthly $35 $0
Cost Per User Paid $5 $5

Additional services:
Full service payroll
Automatic tax calcs.
All tax filings and payments
Multistate payroll
Timecards & employee app.

Final thoughts...

Square Payroll takes care of one of the more demanding tasks a small business owner must manage, completes all regulatory filings, and ensures payments are made on time and error-free. All this is for a competitive price compared with other payroll services. The standout for Square Payroll, when compared to competitors, is its simple pricing structure, integrated and flexible services, and clean and easy-to-use interface.

We like the feature that gives each employee a login to access their personalized payroll data, giving them insight and transparency into calculations while accessing their payslips and tax information. While Square Payroll is ideal for established businesses, it’s great to see that freelancer and contractor pay is easily managed and that state boundaries are not impediments to tax calculations and payroll filings. These features mean that Square Payroll is very much of the moment in today’s hybrid working and working from home environment, and we feel it’s worth consideration.