Deel and Gusto are two of the most popular international payroll software platforms. They also offer HR tools and contractor management features, and Deel also provides the option to engage Employer of Record (EOR) services. In this guide, we’ll examine the similarities and differences between Deel and Gusto to help you decide which global payroll solution is right for your needs.

Deel vs. Gusto: Comparison table

FeaturesDeelGusto
Starting priceCustom quotes only$40/mo. + $6/payee/mo.
Global payrollYesYes
Contractor managementYesYes
Employer of RecordYesForthcoming
Forever free planYesNo
Mobile appNoYes
Our star rating4.7 out of 54.6 out of 5

Plan and pricing information up to date as of 1/29/2024.

Deel vs. Gusto: Pricing

Deel pricing

Deel offers multiple pricing plans that include different features to suit different businesses needs. The three pricing plans are:

  • Contractor: Custom quote required.
  • Employer of Record: Custom quote required.
  • Direct employees: Free for companies with less than 200 employees. If you have more workers than that, you must contact Deel’s sales team for a custom quote.

The direct employee plan serves as Deel’s free trial and allows you to test drive the software for a long period of time before committing to a paid plan. For more information, see our full Deel review.

Gusto pricing

Gusto also offers multiple transparent pricing plans so you can choose the one that fits your needs. The four pricing plans are:

  • Contractor: Special discounted base price of $0 per month for the first 6 months, plus $6 per contractor per month. After 6 months, this plan costs $35 per month, plus $6 per contractor per month.
  • Simple: $40 per month, plus $6 per month per person.
  • Plus: $80 per month, plus $12 per month per person. Option to add on priority support and HR services for an additional $8 per month per person.
  • Premium: You must contact Gusto’s sales team for a custom quote for this plan.

Gusto lets you set up an account and company profile for free. You will only be charged when you run payroll for the first time so you can take as long as you want to explore the platform. However, Gusto does not offer a forever free plan like Deel. For more information, see our full Gusto review and check out our list of the top Gusto competitors.

Deel vs. Gusto: Feature comparison

Global payroll

Deel is well-known for its easy-to-use international payroll platform (Figure A), which is available in more than 100 countries. Deel covers compliance, taxes, benefits administration, visa support, and PTO admin all in one system, and its local experts are available to assist with any related issues. However, it lacks a mobile app, whereas Gusto offers the Gusto Wallet app for employees — which is why it made our list of the best payroll apps.

Figure A

Deel payroll.
Image: Deel

Gusto’s easy-to-navigate platform (Figure B) lets employers run payroll and direct deposit money in just a few clicks. If you enable the Payroll on AutoPilot® feature, payroll will run automatically one day before your payroll deadlines. Deductions and tax filing are automated to make compliance easy, and employee I-9s and W-2s and contractor 1099s are all stored in the online platform.

Figure B

Gusto payroll.
Image: Gusto

HR features

Deel also includes other HR tools (Figure C) besides just payroll, including onboarding and offboarding tools, employee engagement surveys and a people database. However, its tools are not as comprehensive as a dedicated HR suite like BambooHR, and it also lacks a couple HR features that Gusto does have, most notably time tracking.

Figure C

Deel HR dashboard.
Deel HR dashboard.

Gusto also offers a wide range of HR features that small and big businesses alike will find helpful. They include benefits administration, native time and attendance tracking, hiring and onboarding, talent management and performance management (Figure D). While Gusto offers more HR features than Deel, you will need to get the Premium plan to unlock all of them, which might be a hindrance for small businesses.

Figure D

Gusto performance management.
Gusto performance management.

Contractor management

Deel’s contractor management plan (Figure E) is not as affordable as many on the market, including Gusto’s, but it does come with some cool features. In addition to 15 different payment methods, Deel also offers the Deel card, a debit card that contractors can use to make payments straight from their Deel account using a stable currency.

Figure E

Deel contractor management.
Deel contractor management.

If you have U.S. workers, you can generate W-9s for U.S. team members and file 1099s with a single click. And if you’re willing to upgrade to Deel Shield or Deel Premium, you’ll get additional protections from contractor misclassification.

Gusto’s payroll platform allows you to pay both full-time employees and contractors in 120+ different countries (Figure F), or you can opt for the Contractor Only plan. With Gusto, contractors can self-onboard and receive automatic payday emails and 1099-NEC forms. Just like with full-time employees, tax calculations, forms and filing are all automated.

Figure F

Gusto run payroll.
Gusto run payroll.

Employer of Record

Deel currently offers Employer of Record (EOR) services in 90+ countries (Figure G). An EOR acts as a third-party go-between that assumes all the hassle and compliance risk of hiring and paying employees internationally.  Deel owns all of its international hiring entities except for China, instead of contracting with third-party organizations, so your company can have a seamless experience. Deel provides localized benefits for each country and allows you to edit and sign contracts directly in the app with document management tools.

Figure G

Deel EOR.
Deel EOR.

In contrast, Gusto currently does not offer its own Employer of Record of services. Its website states that later this year, it will partner with Remote to officially launch the EOR service Gusto Global in 75 countries (the service is currently in beta in Canada only). Remote is another international payroll and HR software company that is actually one of Deel’s main competitors (see our Deel vs. Remote comparison for more information).

So if you need EOR services right now, you should choose Deel or work directly with another alternative, such as Remote, instead of waiting for Gusto’s services to launch.

On the other hand, if you’re comfortable waiting a few months, we’re confident that the combination of Remote’s EOR services and Gusto’s excellent automation will result in an excellent user experience.

Deel pros and cons

Pros of Deel

  • Free for companies with under 200 employees.
  • Dedicated account reps for enterprise accounts.
  • Easy-to-use payroll system.
  • EOR services in 90+ countries.

Cons of Deel

  • Does not offer a mobile app.
  • Contractor management plan is more expensive than competitors.
  • Must pay extra for contract misclassification protection.
  • Not as comprehensive as dedicated HR software.

Gusto pros and cons

Pros of Gusto

  • Easy-to-use automated payroll platform.
  • Lots of good HR features.
  • Contractor-only plan is more affordable than Deel’s.
  • Very transparent pricing system.

Cons of Gusto

  • Some HR features are limited to the Premium tier.
  • Does not offer 24/7 customer support.
  • Quickbooks integration can be clunky.

Review methodology

To compare Deel and Gusto, we looked at their global payroll and HR tools. We also considered their Employer of Record (EOR) services and contractor management plans. We weighed additional factors such as pricing, user experience and ease of use. And we consulted product documentation, user reviews and demo videos to see how they worked.

Should your organization use Deel or Gusto?

Both Deel and Gusto are excellent options for businesses looking for global payroll and contractor management tools. Deel’s and Gusto’s payroll platforms are similar, with the main difference being Gusto’s fully automated feature and employee app. That being said, Deel offers a forever free plan to companies under 200 employees, which will no doubt be very appealing to small businesses on a budget.

Both platforms also offer HR tools that will be beneficial for small and medium businesses especially. Gusto offers more HR features overall, including performance and talent management, while Deel offers employee engagement surveys. If native HR features matter to you, Gusto has the slight edge in this category.

When it comes to their contractor plans, Gusto’s is more affordable, especially when you account for the six-month introductory offer. However, Deel provides some additional features, such as the Deel Card for contractors and an option to upgrade your misclassification protection, so it’s up to you to decide if that’s worth the extra money.

Lastly, Deel is the only one that currently offers EOR services, making it the clear winner in this particular category. Even when Gusto Global does launch later this year, it will be run and managed through another company. Since Deel owns all its EOR entities except for China, you’ll have a much more seamless experience with them.

Still not sure if Deel or Gusto is right for your needs? Check out our list of the best international payroll services to see what your other options are.

1 Deel

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Run payroll in 100+ countries and 200+ currencies from a single place. Deel’s comprehensive global platform eliminates the ongoing admin of local compliance, taxes, and benefits. With in-house experts across 100+ countries, dedicated CSM’s, visa and PTO support, and more, Deel provides unmatched payroll expertise and service. Plus, with a single point of contact, we eliminate handovers, providing you with faster support and compliance, so your entire global team gets paid quickly and securely.

Learn more about Deel

2 Multiplier Technologies

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With Multiplier, pay any number of global employees easily in multiple currencies. Eliminate the hassle of maintaining individual providers per country. Generate a single invoice and pay international teams in minutes. Have a consolidated dashboard to manage global payroll from a single window.

Learn more about Multiplier Technologies

3 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.

Learn more about QuickBooks

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Stay up to date on the latest in technology with Daily Tech Insider. We bring you news on industry-leading companies, products, and people, as well as highlighted articles, downloads, and top resources. You’ll receive primers on hot tech topics that will help you stay ahead of the game. Delivered Weekdays