Payroll Specialist Salary

Payroll Specialists in the United States pull down an average of $18.68 per hour. Overall cash earnings of Payroll Specialists stretch from $31K near the bottom to $58K at the top, and the heftiest packages can encompass around $5K each from bonuses and profit sharing. Earnings for this group are mostly affected by the specific employer, followed by geography and experience level. There are far more female Payroll Specialists who answered the questionnaire than men, making up 90 percent. Most report receiving medical coverage from their employers and a strong majority collect dental insurance. Most workers in this position report high levels of job satisfaction. The data for this snapshot was collected from individuals who took PayScale's salary survey.

$34,832 - $60,678
$35K
$46K
$61K
MEDIAN: $45,880
10%
50%
90%

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$14.14 - $24.68
$14
$19
$25
MEDIAN: $18.68
10%
50%
90%

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National Salary Data (?
XAll compensation data shown are gross 10th to 90th percentile ranges. Take the PayScale Survey to find out how location influences pay for this job.
)
$0$21K$42K$63K
Salary
$34,832 - $60,678  
   
Bonus
$391.49 - $5,082  
Profit Sharing
$291.87 - $5,034  
Commission
$500  
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).
)
$31,078 - $57,760  
Country: United States | Currency: USD | Updated: 25 Mar 2017 | Individuals Reporting: 1,329
© PayScale, Inc. @ www.payscale.com
National Hourly Rate Data (?
XAll compensation data shown are gross 10th to 90th percentile ranges. Take the PayScale Survey to find out how location influences pay for this job.
)
$0$13$26$39
Hourly Rate
$14.14 - $24.68  
   
Hourly Tips
$1.25  
Overtime
$21.30 - $38.24  
National Annualized Data (?
XAll compensation data shown are gross 10th to 90th percentile ranges. Take the PayScale Survey to find out how location influences pay for this job.
)
$0$26K$52K$78K
Bonus
$391.49 - $5,082  
   
Commission
$500  
Profit Sharing
$291.87 - $5,034  
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).
)
$31,078 - $57,760  
Country: United States | Currency: USD | Updated: 25 Mar 2017 | Individuals Reporting: 2,052
© PayScale, Inc. @ www.payscale.com

Find Out Exactly What You Should Be Paid

United States (change)

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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

  • Audit employee timesheets for hours worked and accuracy.
  • Prepare payroll related journal entries for period-end.
  • Maintain, prepare and process payroll for organization personnel.
  • Maintain current knowledge of IRS regulations.
  • Compile and submit payroll deductions related check requests and payments.

Common Career Paths for Payroll Specialist


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While Payroll Specialists do not often become Human Resources Managers, the job pays $59K per year on average. With an annual salary of $56K, Payroll Manager is the most common role for Payroll Specialists to subsequently assume on their way up the ladder. Transitioning into a Payroll Administrator role — which usually pays $41K — is also typical for Payroll Specialists, though less common by comparison.

Payroll Specialist Job Listings

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Popular Employer Salaries for Payroll Specialist


Payroll Specialists flock to Paychex, Inc., Automatic Data Processing, Inc. (ADP), Kraco, Francis E. Parker Memorial Home, and ADP National Accounts, highly regarded companies that employ a generous number of people in this profession. Heading up the field in terms of compensation, Kraco offers the most; Payroll Specialists earn $54K on average there. Other employers shelling out big bucks include ADP National Accounts, Francis E. Parker Memorial Home, and Automatic Data Processing, Inc. (ADP), where Payroll Specialists typically earn around $53K, $52K, or $47K, respectively.

Also approaching the lower end are Paychex, Inc. at $35K, CoAdvantage at $47K, and Automatic Data Processing, Inc. (ADP) at $47K.

Popular Skills for Payroll Specialist


Payroll Specialists seem to require a rather large skill set. Most notably, skills in Automatic Data Processing Software Suite, ADP Time and Attendance System, ADP Payroll System, and Payroll Tax Compliance are correlated to pay that is above average, with boosts between 4 percent and 7 percent. At the other end of the pay range are skills like Data Entry and Data Processing. Those educated in Microsoft Excel tend to be well versed in Data Entry.

Pay by Experience Level for Payroll Specialist

Median of all compensation (including tips, bonus, and overtime) by years of experience.


Experience and pay tend to be weakly linked for Payroll Specialists — those with more experience do not necessarily bring in higher earnings. Salaries for the relatively untried average out to around $39K, but survey participants with five to 10 years of experience earn a significantly higher median of $44K. People with 10 to 20 years of experience make an average of about $45K in this role. Survey participants who have spent more than 20 years on the job report a predictably higher median income of $46K, demonstrating that compensation is roughly commensurate with experience in the end.

Pay Difference by Location

National Average: $42,195

Larger city markers indicate a job is popular in that location.

For those looking to make money, Payroll Specialists in New York enjoy an exceptional pay rate, 28 percent above the national average. Payroll Specialists can also look forward to large paychecks in cities like Seattle (+19 percent), Los Angeles (+12 percent), San Diego (+12 percent), and Dallas (+11 percent). The smallest paychecks in the market, 12 percent south of the national average, can be found in Tampa. Workers in Phoenix and Cincinnati earn less than others in this profession; their salaries fall short of the national average by 3 percent.

Payroll Specialist Reviews

Q: What is it like working as a Payroll Specialist?

Payroll Specialist in Austin:
`"$For Love or Money?"`
Pros: I enjoy successfully processing an accurate pay period because I care about every one of our employees and want them to not worry about compensation for their hard work.
Cons: Offering 100% of myself on a daily basis, and feeling like I am compensated for 75%. I least like that I cannot participate in PFP or some type of Bonus structure.

Related Job Salaries

Key Stats for Payroll Specialist

Gender

Female
90 %
Male
10 %

Job Satisfaction

Extremely satisfied
Rated 5 out of 5
based on 522 votes.
Less than 1 year
3%
1-4 years
34%
5-9 years
21%
10-19 years
28%
20 years or more
14%
Location:
Years in Fields/Career:
United States (change)

Experience Affects Payroll Specialist Salaries

▲10%

▲7%

▲5%

National Average
$42,000

▼8%

Skills That Affect Payroll Specialist Salaries





ADP
▲4%



Microsoft Excel
▼0%

Accounting
▼0%

Microsoft Word
▼0%

National Average
$42,000




▼3%


Job Satisfaction

Extremely satisfied
Rated 5 out of 5
based on 522 votes.

Gender

Female
90 %
Male
10 %

Years of Experience

Less than 1 year
3%
1-4 years
34%
5-9 years
21%
10-19 years
28%
20 years or more
14%

Common Health Benefits

medical benefits
Medical: 81%
dental benefits
Dental: 73%
vision benefits
Vision: 63%
dental benefits
None: 17%
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