Payroll Assistant Salary
Women make up the vast majority of Payroll Assistants in the United States. The average pay in this industry is approximately $15.46 per hour. Residence is the biggest factor affecting pay for this group, followed by years of experience. Although a strong majority have medical coverage and the larger part have dental coverage, roughly a fourth claim no health benefits at all. Job satisfaction is reported as high by the vast majority of workers. Figures cited in this summary are based on replies to PayScale's salary questionnaire.
Job Description for Payroll Assistant
A payroll assistant typically works either in the human resources or accounting department of a company. A person in this position assists with all aspects of payroll and related employee recordkeeping and storage. Much of a payroll assistant’s work involves data entry, and familiarity with basic computer programs is required, along with accuracy and attention to detail.Read More...
Additionally, payroll assistants help process new employees by handling new hire paperwork. This typically involves working with federal and state work eligibility and tax withholding documents. Many companies also have new employees fill out various benefits paperwork, as well as documentation related to tax credit benefits the company may receive for hiring them; this paperwork is typically entered into various computer databases so proper withholding, exemptions, and pre-tax deductions are taken from employee paychecks.
Because existing employees' needs may change, payroll assistants also help process changes to income tax withholding, any new benefits, and changes to existing benefits that the employee submits to the human resources department. Payroll assistants may also be tasked with storage of original employment documents, including resumes, applications, and original new-hire paperwork. Additionally, payroll assistants can be tasked with tracking information such as earned vacation or time off.
Most companies look for payroll assistants who possess office administration vocational training or previous work experience. Payroll assistants must possess excellent organizational skills, and they should expect to work regular business hours.
Payroll Assistant Tasks
- Calculate, key, total, and balance substitute payrolls.
- Create reports for information pertaining to payroll.
- Handle voluntary and involuntary deductions.
- Enter changes to employee payroll records.
- Communicate with employees regarding changes in salary, benefits, etc.
Common Career Paths for Payroll Assistant
There are some Payroll Assistants — though it's uncommon — that transition into Payroll Managers, where earnings are an average $56K annually. Payroll Assistants moving up in their careers tend to step into positions as Payroll Specialists or Payroll Administrators. The median paychecks in those roles are $5K higher and $7K higher, respectively.
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Popular Skills for Payroll Assistant
Payroll Assistants seem to require a number of specific skills. Most notably, skills in Payroll Tax Compliance, ADP Payroll System, Payroll Administration, and Microsoft Office are correlated to pay that is above average, with boosts between 3 percent and 11 percent. Skills that are correlated to lower pay, on the other hand, include Quickbooks. For most people, competency in Data Entry indicates knowledge of Microsoft Word and ADP Payroll System.
Pay by Experience Level for Payroll Assistant
Median of all compensation (including tips, bonus, and overtime) by years of experience.
For Payroll Assistants, more experience in the field does not usually mean bigger paychecks. Workers in their first five years can expect to earn $32K, but people who have been around for five to 10 years earn a noticeably bigger sum of $39K. After working for 10 to 20 years, Payroll Assistants make a median salary of $39K. After two decades in the workforce, the average Payroll Assistant generally earns more than ever; median pay for this group is estimated at $40K.
Pay Difference by Location
New York offers some of the highest pay in the country for Payroll Assistants, 25 percent above the national average. Payroll Assistants will also find cushy salaries in Seattle (+21 percent) and Los Angeles (+4 percent). In Houston, salaries are 3 percent below the national average and represent the lowest-paying market.
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