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Payroll Specialist Salary (United States)

Payroll Specialists in the United States are largely women. The group as a whole has a nationwide average of $17.90 per hour for pay. Total cash earnings of Payroll Specialists range from $30K on the low end to $55K on the high end; the final amount can include bonuses and profit sharing proceeds that occasionally exceed $3K and $4K, respectively. The most important factor affecting compensation for this group is the specific employer, followed by the particular city and tenure. Work is enjoyable for Payroll Specialists, who typically claim high levels of job satisfaction. Medical benefits are awarded to a fair number, and a strong majority earn dental coverage. The data for this snapshot was collected from individuals who took PayScale's salary survey.
Payroll Specialist Salary (?
XAll compensation data shown are gross, national 10th to 90th percentile ranges. Pay can vary greatly by location. To view local data, take the PayScale survey.
)
$32,192 - $56,833
(Median)
32K
37K
43K
50K
57K
MEDIAN: $43,211
10%
25%
50%
75%
90%
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Payroll Specialist Salary (?
XAll compensation data shown are gross, national 10th to 90th percentile ranges. Pay can vary greatly by location. To view local data, take the PayScale survey.
)
$13.73 - $23.62
(Median)
14
18
21
24
MEDIAN: $17.00
10%
50%
75%
90%
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National Salary Data

 (?
XAll compensation data shown are gross, national 10th to 90th percentile ranges. Pay can vary greatly by location. To view local data, take the PayScale survey.
)
$0$19K$38K$57K
Salary
$32,192 - $56,833  
   
Bonus
$0.00 - $2,940  
Profit Sharing
$204.26 - $3,548  
Total Pay (?
XTotal Pay combines base annual salary or hourly wage, bonuses, profit sharing, tips, commissions, overtime pay and other forms of cash earnings, as applicable for this job. It does not include equity (stock) compensation, cash value of retirement benefits, or the value of other non-cash benefits (e.g. healthcare).
)
$30,163 - $54,973  
Country: United States | Currency: USD | Updated: 11 Dec 2014 | Individuals Reporting: 1,447
National Hourly Rate Data (?
XAll compensation data shown are gross, national 10th to 90th percentile ranges. Pay can vary greatly by location. To view local data, take the PayScale survey.
)
$0$13$26$39
Hourly Rate
$13.73 - $23.62  
   
Hourly Tips
$0.00 - $0.36  
Overtime
$19.71 - $36.60  
National Annualized Data (?
XAll compensation data shown are gross, national 10th to 90th percentile ranges. Pay can vary greatly by location. To view local data, take the PayScale survey.
)
$0$26K$52K$78K
Bonus
$0.00 - $2,940  
   
Profit Sharing
$204.26 - $3,548  
Total Pay (?
XTotal Pay combines base annual salary or hourly wage, bonuses, profit sharing, tips, commissions, overtime pay and other forms of cash earnings, as applicable for this job. It does not include equity (stock) compensation, cash value of retirement benefits, or the value of other non-cash benefits (e.g. healthcare).
)
$30,163 - $54,973  
Country: United States | Currency: USD | Updated: 11 Dec 2014 | Individuals Reporting: 1,868
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Job Description for Payroll Specialist

Payroll specialists can be found in many industries from small businesses to large organizations. Job responsibilities often include payroll processing, maintaining personnel databases, and managing budgetary expenditures. Knowledge and experience with tax laws, union contracts, wage and hour laws, and common fiscal procedures are important. Most payroll specialists are expected to have a good understanding of budgetary operations. Payroll specialists report to a supervisor who oversees the department. Flexible hours, including evenings and weekends, may be required.
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Payroll Specialist Tasks
  • Maintain current knowledge of IRS regulations.
  • Compile and submit payroll deductions related check requests and payments.
  • Maintain, prepare and process payroll for organization personnel.
  • Audit employee timesheets for hours worked and accuracy.
  • Prepare payroll related journal entries for period-end.

Common Career Paths for Payroll Specialist

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Payroll Specialists sometimes assume positions such as Human Resources Managers. That role pays $58K per year on average. A more common career path for Payroll Specialists is stepping into the role of Payroll Manager or Payroll Administrator.

Payroll Specialist Job Listings

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Popular Employer Salaries for Payroll Specialist

Payroll Specialists flock to Francis E. Parker Memorial Home for generous paychecks, where average earnings of $52K lead the pack in compensation.
Pay for Payroll Specialists is the lowest at Paychex, Inc., which has a median salary of $38K. In addition, there's little room to grow there, with salaries maxing out at $46K.

Popular Skills for Payroll Specialist

Survey participants wield an impressively varied skill set on the job. Most notably, skills in ADP Time and Attendance System, ADP, ADP Payroll System, and Benefits & Compensation are correlated to pay that is above average, with boosts between 8 percent and 10 percent. Skills that pay less than market rate include Accounts Receivable. Most people experienced in Microsoft Excel also know Data Entry.

Pay by Experience Level for Payroll Specialist

Median of all compensation (including tips, bonus, and overtime) by years of experience.
Payroll Specialists with more experience do not necessarily bring home bigger paychecks. In fact, experience in this field tends to impact compensation minimally. Although individuals who have less than five years' experience earn $37K on average, people with five to 10 years benefit from a notably larger average of $42K. After working for 10 to 20 years, Payroll Specialists make a median salary of $43K. Folks who have racked up more than 20 years in the field report incomes that aren't that much higher than less experienced individuals' earnings; the veterans make just $44K on average.

Pay Difference By Location

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Los Angeles
up arrow 4%
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National Average
$41,000
Cincinnati
up arrow 2%
up arrow 11%
Tampa
up arrow 14%
Larger circles over a city indicate a job is popular in that location.
Payroll Specialists will find that New York offers an impressive pay rate, one which exceeds the national average by 20 percent. Payroll Specialists will also find cushy salaries in Seattle (+19 percent), Chicago (+12 percent), Houston (+12 percent), and Minneapolis (+12 percent). Those in the field find the lowest salaries in Tampa, 14 percent below the national average. Below-median salaries also turn up in St. Louis and Cincinnati (11 percent lower and 2 percent lower, respectively).

Related Job Salaries

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Experience Affects Payroll Specialist Salaries

National Average
$41,000

Skills That Affect Payroll Specialist Salaries

ADP
up arrow 9%
Payroll Administration
up arrow 4%
Microsoft Excel
up arrow 3%
Payroll Tax Compliance
up arrow 3%
Accounting
up arrow 2%
Microsoft Office
up arrow 2%
Accounts Payable
up arrow 1%
Microsoft Word
up arrow 1%
National Average
$41,000
Customer Service
up arrow 1%
Data Processing
up arrow 1%
Data Entry
up arrow 3%
Accounts Receivable
up arrow 4%

Job Satisfaction

Extremely satisfied Image
Extremely satisfied
Rated 5 out of 5 based on 678 votes.

Gender

Female
91%
female alumni
 
Male
9%
male alumni

Years of Experience

Less than 1 year
2%
1-4 years
27%
5-9 years
26%
10-19 years
28%
20 years or more
16%

Common Health Benefits

medical benefits Medical: 80% dental benefits Dental: 71%
vision benefits Vision: 57% employee benefits None: 17%