Handling global payroll is a challenge not every business was ready for when they were originally forced to confront it. As a result, many turned to SaaS solutions like Deel Payroll to help them maintain compliance while paying a distributed workforce. In this review, you will learn about what Deel has to offer and whether it’s a good fit for your use case.

Deel's fast facts

Pricing: Free for startups with direct employees; contractor payroll starting at $49 a month per contractor

Key features:

  • EOR services in 90+ countries

  • Built-in HR functionality

  • Try cost-free until you’re ready to start running payroll

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What is Deel?

Deel Payroll is an SaaS solution designed to help businesses maintain compliance and pay their workforces in over 90 countries. While it’s not the only cloud-based payroll platform, or even the only global payroll solution, Deel sets itself apart by reducing the complexity of navigating international payroll regulations, making it easy to pay employees and contractors no matter where they work.

Global payroll dashboard.
Image: Deel. Global payroll dashboard.

Deel is designed to help businesses onboard global workers more quickly and scale up in a digital-first professional environment. The organizations that will benefit the most are those who want to hire talent, but who don’t yet have systems in place to support their payroll in their location.

While businesses with direct employees will find value in Deel’s offerings, especially if they’re within its free-to-use boundaries, those that use Deel to allow for paying employer of record employees will likely find the cost difficult to sustain as the number of global employees grows. For any given country or locality, businesses will likely hit a threshold where establishing their own EOR will be the more cost-effective option.

Even so, Deel will continue to provide those companies with a way to more easily add workers to the payroll when they live outside locations that qualify for “direct employee” status.

Deel Payroll pricing

Pricing for Deel users is offered in three categories, based on the payroll arrangement of the workforce. The categories are contractor payroll, direct employee payroll and EOR payroll.

Using Deel to pay contractors starts at $49 a month. For businesses that want to use Deel as their EOR to pay international employees, it’s $599 a month.

For businesses with direct employees hired through their own entities, Deel is free to use for any company with 200 or fewer employees.

With its current pricing structure, Deel can be nearly fully explored at no cost and without requiring payment information. In fact, users can benefit from its entire suite of HR functionality this way, using Deel to manage onboarding, PTO, expense reporting and more.

Key features of Deel Payroll

Deel was built, first and foremost, to facilitate global payroll. While many of its competitors started as domestic payroll services, Deel was designed from the ground up to power businesses that run on Anywhere Operations.

Recently, Deel has also added a suite of HR tools to further expand its usefulness, many of which can be used at no cost by startups and SMBs.

Payroll report review interface.
Image: Deel. Payroll report review interface.

Deel’s number one feature is its global payroll. Establishing processes to handle paying employees or contractors in another country is costly and time-consuming, so Deel’s primary value proposition of lowering barriers to entry is a major advantage.

This is especially true as businesses these days often need to start paying professionals in multiple countries at once, rather than establishing a presence in new nations one at a time.

Beyond that, Deel supports numerous payment methods for payroll, includes HR functions like PTO management and provides a wealth of support for answering or solving concerns about compliance, legal concerns and even contractor misclassification. And, it facilitates integration with multiple popular virtual collaboration suites, such as Teams, GSuite and Slack.

Deel Payroll pros

  • Quickly onboard global employees and contractors.
  • Hassle-free global payroll in 90+ countries.
  • EOR services to support rapid international scaling.
  • Dedicated customer success manager for enterprise clients.
  • Integration with widely used collaboration tools.

Deel Payroll cons

  • EOR services are extensive, but expensive.
  • User fees are per employee/contractor, so costs scale with workforce size.
  • CSMs are only provided to enterprise clients.
  • Contractor misclassification protection service only available for enterprise clients.
Payroll entity dashboard.
Image: Deel. Payroll entity dashboard.

If Deel isn’t ideal for you, check out these alternatives

Deel is a solid option for global payroll, but no software tool is applicable to every use case. If Deel isn’t quite the right match for your company’s needs, take a look at some of the other top choices in the market, such as those listed below.

Papaya Global

Comparable in many ways to Deel with regards to the level of service and the price, Papaya Global has one major advantage over most other international payroll solutions: advanced analytics. In an age where data intelligence often means the difference between boom and bust, Papaya Global’s prescriptive algorithms can do a lot to help minimize costs and avoid risks.

Check out our full review of Papaya Global’s software.


Rippling’s offerings are simultaneously more and less robust than Deel’s. One difference is that its software suite includes IT services and functionality. Additionally, the platform integrates with over 500 third-party apps and tools. However, its payroll functionality is only available in about 50 countries, compared to Deel’s 90+ countries.

Check out our full review of Rippling’s software.


Remote payroll can be used to pay workers in over 160 countries, though its EOR service is only supported in 70 of them. That said, the platform comes with mobile functionality, contractor agreement templates and API access for companies who want to build their own integrations for other software they are using.

Review methodology

To write this review, we reviewed the vendor’s website, those of its primary competitors, news sites and user review sites (such as Trustpilot) to aggregate information and feedback regarding current expert consensus, user experience and market environment.

Other payroll solutions

1 Paycor

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Payroll can be a time-consuming, administrative task for HR teams. Paycor’s solution is an easy-to-use yet powerful tool that gives you time back in your day. Quickly and easily pay employees from wherever you are and never worry about tax compliance again. Key features like general ledger integration, earned wage access, AutoRun, employee self-service and detailed reporting simplify the process and help ensure you pay employees accurately and on time.

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2 QuickBooks

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QuickBooks from Intuit is a small business accounting software that allows companies to manage business anywhere, anytime. It presents organizations with a clear view of their profits without manual work and provides smart and user-friendly tools for the business.

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3 Workforce Now - ADP

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ADP Workforce Now serves clients across nearly every industry who are looking to manage their human capital management needs across payroll, HR, benefits, talent, and time and labor, among others. ADP Workforce Now provides clients with custom-tailored solutions that fit their organization, so they can save time and money while getting expert support and accuracy.

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4 OnPay

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Payroll and HR that move you in the right direction. We give you everything you need to navigate payroll, HR, and benefits — so you can keep running your business smoothly.

Get your first month free, or join a demo to see everything we can do!

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5 Paychex

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Paychex is a cloud-based payroll management system offering payroll, HR, and benefits management systems for small to large businesses. Paychex covers payroll and taxes, employee 401(k) retirement services, benefits, insurance, HR, accounting, finance and Professional Employer Organization (PEO).

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