Payroll Specialist Salary

Median pay for Payroll Specialists in the United States is around $18.92 per hour. Final cash compensation to Payroll Specialists varies from around $32K to approximately $59K; choice pay grades include potential for bonuses and profit sharing as high as $5K and $3K, respectively. The most influential factor affecting pay for this group is the particular firm, though geography and years of experience have a (lesser) impact as well. Women make up the vast majority of Payroll Specialists (90 percent) who answered the questionnaire. Most report receiving medical coverage from their employers and a strong majority collect dental insurance. Job satisfaction for Payroll Specialists is high. The figures in this overview were provided by individuals who took PayScale's salary questionnaire.

$34,999 - $61,677
$35K
$47K
$62K
MEDIAN: $46,756
10%
50%
90%

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$14.39 - $24.98
$14
$19
$25
MEDIAN: $18.92
10%
50%
90%

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$0$61K
Salary $34,999 - $61,677
Bonus $301.00 - $5,058
Profit Sharing $295.17 - $3,425
Commission $650
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).
)
$31,510 - $58,567
  • Country: United States
  • Currency: USD
  • Updated: 25 Jul 2017
  • Individuals Reporting: 1,435
Hourly Data $0$38
Hourly Rate $14.39 - $24.98
Overtime $22.16 - $38.71
Annual Data $0$58K
Bonus $301.00 - $5,058
Commission $650
Profit Sharing $295.17 - $3,425
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).
)
$31,510 - $58,567
  • Country: United States
  • Currency: USD
  • Updated: 25 Jul 2017
  • Individuals Reporting: 2,247

Find Out Exactly What You Should Be Paid

United States (change)

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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It's not very common for Payroll Specialists to move on to become Human Resources Managers. Average pay for a Human Resources Manager is $59K annually. Becoming a Payroll Manager is, more often than not, the most common role that Payroll Specialists move into when they're ready for the next step in their career. The average salary for the position is $56K. Another frequent advance is for Payroll Specialists to assume a Payroll Administrator role; in this role, workers often earn $41K.

Payroll Specialist Job Listings

Popular Employer Salaries for Payroll Specialist


Dominating the field, Paychex, Inc., Automatic Data Processing, Inc. (ADP), Kraco, Francis E. Parker Memorial Home, and ADP National Accounts are top firms with a reputation for hiring a great number of Payroll Specialists. Those at Kraco can expect to make the most, with the company offering a median salary of $54K. 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.

Paychex, Inc., CoAdvantage, and Automatic Data Processing, Inc. (ADP) also scrape the bottom of the pay scale, with median earnings hovering around $35K, $47K, and $47K.

Popular Skills for Payroll Specialist


Payroll Specialists seem to wield many skills on the job. 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. Skills that seem to negatively impact pay include Data Entry, Data Processing, and Accounts Payable. It is often found that people who know Microsoft Excel are also skilled in Data Entry.

Pay by Experience Level for Payroll Specialist

Pay by Experience for a Payroll Specialist has a positive trend. An entry-level Payroll Specialist with less than 5 years of experience can expect to earn an average total compensation of $39,000 based on 1,483 salaries provided by anonymous users. Average total compensation includes tips, bonus, and overtime pay. A Payroll Specialist with mid-career experience which includes employees with 5 to 10 years of experience can expect to earn an average total compensation of $44,000 based on 1,006 salaries. An experienced Payroll Specialist which includes employees with 10 to 20 years of experience can expect to earn an average total compensation of $45,000 based on 1,120 salaries. A Payroll Specialist with late-career experience which includes employees with greater than 20 years of experience can expect to earn an average total compensation of $46,000 based on 482 salaries.

Pay Difference by Location

National Average: $42,786

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

Surpassing the national average by 26 percent, Payroll Specialists in New York receive some of the highest pay in the country. Payroll Specialists can also look forward to large paychecks in cities like Seattle (+18 percent), Los Angeles (+11 percent), San Diego (+11 percent), and Dallas (+10 percent). Trailing the national average by 14 percent, Tampa is the market with the smallest paychecks. Below-median salaries also turn up in Phoenix and Cincinnati (5 percent lower).

Payroll Specialist Reviews

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

Payroll Specialist in Salt Lake City:
"Challenging."
Pros: New changes happen all the time and so you have to learn new things.
Cons: Lack of professionalism.

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.

Payroll Specialist in Parsippany:
Pros: Always something new to learn and do with each payroll cycle.
Cons: Tax fallouts and system errors can occur.

Payroll Specialist in South Windsor:
Pros: PTO time, Manager, Cafeteria.
Cons: Upper Management, Not flexible.

Related Job Salaries

Key Stats for Payroll Specialist

Gender

Female
90 %
Male
10 %

Job Satisfaction

Extremely satisfied
Rated 5 out of 5
based on 673 votes.
Less than 1 year
3%
1-4 years
34%
5-9 years
21%
10-19 years
28%
20 years or more
14%
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Location:
Years in Fields/Career:
United States (change)

Experience Affects Payroll Specialist Salaries

▲9%

▲6%

▲3%

National Average
$43,000

▼10%

Skills That Affect Payroll Specialist Salaries





ADP
▲3%



National Average
$43,000

Microsoft Excel
▼1%

Accounting
▼1%



Microsoft Word
▼2%



▼5%

Job Satisfaction

Extremely satisfied
Rated 5 out of 5
based on 673 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%
no benefits
None: 16%
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