When it comes to payroll software, Paycom and Paychex are two of the most well known. Paycom is a full-service human capital management (HCM) provider offering HR solutions and payroll services for businesses of various sizes. And Paychex is a software solution that helps businesses automate payroll, HR and other human-capital services.

These platforms have similar features in addition to similar names, but that doesn’t necessarily mean that both options will work for your business. We’ll break them down in this comparison guide to help you determine which one is a better fit for your business.

Paycom vs. Paychex: Comparison table

FeaturesPaycomPaychex
Starting monthly priceContact for quote$39 fixed rate + $5/employee
Expense managementYesYes
Benefits administrationYesYes
HR toolsYesYes
Free trialNoNo
Our star rating4.24.0
Try PaycomTry Paychex

Paycom vs. Paychex: Pricing

Paycom pricing

Paycom does not disclose its pricing on its website. Instead, you have to contact the sales team for a demo, and after that, they’ll put together a custom quote based on your specific needs.

Paycom doesn’t offer a free trial option either. Because of the lack of transparency, it’s difficult to compare Paycom and Paychex directly when it comes to affordability.

To learn about estimated costs, see our full Paycom review, and be sure to check out our list of the top Paycom competitors as well.

Paychex pricing

Paychex Flex offers three pricing tiers but only discloses the pricing for the lowest tier:

  • Paychex Essential: Starts at $39 a month plus $5 per employee per month.
  • Paychex Select: Contact the sales team for a custom quote.
  • Paychex Pro: Contact the sales team for a custom quote.

Paychex also offers numerous paid add-ons that will increase the price, including paycheck preview, job posting integration and time and attendance tracking. It does not offer a free trial either, although you can book a demo with the sales team before committing to a paid plan.

For more information, see our full Paychex review.

Paycom vs. Paychex: Feature comparison

Payroll processing

Paycom’s payroll services (Figure A) include direct deposit, payroll cards, tax filing and withholding, deductions, paid holiday tracking and more. Paycom has an automated payroll assistant tool called Beti that helps employees troubleshoot and verify their own payroll. Paycom also debits and deposits payrolls taxes and remits filings on your companies behalf. Paycom can handle garnished wage calculations, payments and record-keeping for companies, while the GL Concierge feature helps business owners maintain their general ledger data.

Figure A

Paycom’s payroll dashboard.
Paycom’s payroll dashboard. Source: Paycom.

Paychex’s payroll system (Figure B) will automatically calculate paychecks for both hourly and salaried employees and deduct taxes on your business’ behalf. You can choose from many different payment options, including direct deposit, paper checks and prepaid cards. Paychex also offers a precheck feature that lets employees review their scheduled payments beforehand to reduce payment-related issues.

Figure B

Paychex’s payroll dashboard.
Paychex’s payroll dashboard. Source: Paychex.

Both of them provide mobile apps for iOS and Android so that users can manage payroll on the go. See our list of the best payroll apps of 2023 for more options.

Expense management

Employees can upload receipts to Paycom’s self-service app to eliminate manual entry or link company credit cards so charges automatically flow into the app. The system also automatically allocates expenses to the appropriate general ledger account, reducing time spent on manual data entry. Paycom also offers convenient mileage tracking for even more accurate reporting and expense management.

Paychex’s automatic expensive reporting lets employees do expenses reporting from any device on the go, and also issues alerts for expenses that violate companies limits and policies. The software lets managers approve expenses with one click, or you can set up rules for preapprovals. Pacyhex also provides reporting and analytics so you can track where your company is spending money.

Benefits administration

With Paycom, you can automate the enrollment process and reduce errors that might lead to violations of HIPAA, COBRA, and others. The self-service employee app lets workers make their own enrollment choices on mobile or desktop, while the Benefits to Carrier tool centralizes information from numerous insurance carriers. If you want to outsource your benefits administration, you can even add a Paycom benefits coordinator to the plan.

Paychex also offers benefits administration for an additional fee (Figure C). The HR team can use Paychex to find competitive group health benefits and employee retirement plans, such as 401(k)s. Meanwhile, employees can use their Paychex dashboard to sign up for benefits during enrollment periods, check their benefits, view payslips and see their paycheck deductions.

Figure C

Paychex’s health and benefits dashboard.
Paychex’s health and benefits dashboard. Source: Paychex.

HR and talent management

By using Paycom’s talent acquisition tools (Figure D), HR teams can streamline their hiring process to ensure only qualified applicants get through it, reducing the time it takes to find and hire the right people. Employers can also verify employees’ eligibility via Paycom’s e-verify system and run multiple kinds of background checks on candidates to ensure they don’t pose any risks to the business. Additional tools include performance management, learning management, and compensation budgeting, which is why it made our list of the best compensation management tools for 2023.

Figure D

Paycom’s applicant tracking within the recruiter dashboard.
Paycom’s applicant tracking within the recruiter dashboard. Source: Paycom.

Paychex offers a whole range of HR tools, but most of these are confined to the higher tier pricing plans or are available as a la carte add-ons online. HR features including hiring tools, applicant tracking, employee development and document management. Paychex also offers an entire team of HR experts that can offer more advanced assistance to companies that need hands-on guidance.

SEE: The Best Payroll Software for Accountants in 2023

Paycom pros and cons

Pros of Paycom

  • Employee self-service options.
  • Intuitive Android and iOS mobile apps.
  • Employee performance management and compensation budgeting capabilities.
  • Helpful learning management system.

Cons of Paycom

  • No transparent pricing plan or free trial.
  • Limited third-party integrations.
  • May be too expensive for small businesses.

Paychex pros and cons

Pros of Paychex

  • Reporting and analytics features.
  • Highly customizable payment payment plans.
  • Many integrations plus API developer access.
  • Voice-assisted payroll enhancement.

Cons of Paychex

  • No free trial available.
  • Pricing not transparent besides the entry-level plan.
  • Lots of add-on fees for essential services.
  • Not cost effective for small businesses.

Methodology

To compare Paycom’s and Paychex’s payroll solutions, we reviewed software documentation, viewed product videos and evaluated aggregated user reviews. We considered factors such as pricing, payroll processing, HR features and more.

Should your organization use Paycom or Paychex?

Both Paycom and Paychex are payroll providers that also offer additional tools for HR management.

Paycom is a good choice for medium and large businesses that are looking for a payroll software combined with robust human capital management (HCM) features. However, Paycom might be too complicated and expensive for smaller businesses who simply need an easy-to-use payroll platform and a handful of simple HR tools.

Paychex is a better choice for smaller businesses that are looking for a solution that can scale with them, which is why it made our list of the best payroll software for small businesses (and Paycom did not). The fact that Paychex offers multiple pricing tiers means that businesses can pick and choose which one suits their needs and budget best, then upgrade as needed. That being said, if you want to make the most of Paychex’s features, then you need to be prepared to pay for all the extra add-ons, which can definitely increase the cost.

Since neither platform offers a free trial, the best way to figure out if they are right for your needs is to schedule a personalized demo with their respective sales departments.

If you’re not sold on either Paycom or Paychex, there are many other platforms out there that combine payroll with HR features — not to mention garner rave reviews. See our list of the best payroll software to expand your search.

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 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

3 Paycor

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Paycor’s HR software modernizes every aspect of people management, which saves leaders time and gives them the powerful analytics they need to build winning teams. Paycor provides a full suite of HCM solutions with a single source of truth for employee data, so users never have to switch platforms, log-in to multiple systems, re-key data or open multiple spreadsheets. Everyday processes become simplified, allowing organizations to focus on their most important work.

Learn more about Paycor

4 Rippling

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Rippling is the first way for businesses to manage all of their HR, IT, and Finance — payroll, benefits, computers, apps, corporate cards, expenses, and more — in one unified workforce platform. By connecting every business system to one source of truth for employee data, businesses can automate all of the manual work they normally need to do to make employee changes.

Learn more about Rippling

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).

Learn more about Paychex

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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