For businesses seeking to expand and recruit additional employees shortly, ADP is one of the best payroll options. On top of providing full-service payroll and tax services, it offers advanced HR tools including new employee on-boarding and background checks. However, because it costs extra payroll runs and year-end reporting, ADP is not suited for small firms on a tight monthly budget. If you don’t require extensive HR functions or simply want to save money, a top ADP competitor may be a better fit for your company.

Competitors to the ADP Payroll


Gusto is the greatest option for small business owners who need help with payroll at a reasonable price. The software is simple to use, with no unnecessary features, and you may conduct an unlimited number of pay runs at no additional expense. Unlike ADP, it automatically prepares and sends W-2s and 1099s to employees and contractors, as well as filing and paying federal, state, and local taxes. There are several pricing levels available, including a low-cost starting tier. For new customers, setup and migration are free; however, both ADP and Paychex charge a setup fee.

Gusto also provides a variety of employee perks, including health insurance and 401(k) plans, as well as commuter benefits and tax-advantaged college savings accounts. However, only 39 states are covered by health insurance. Any of the ADP rivals in this article (except TriNet Zenefits, which is only available in 49 states) are excellent choices if you want health plans that are available across the United States.

QuickBooks Payroll

Although QuickBooks Payroll can manage most employee pay processing duties, from payroll onboarding through tax preparation, it does not report new hires to the state, which is a functionality that other solutions in this guide (as well as ADP) provide. You may execute auto payroll with next- or same-day direct deposits in addition to paying contractors and workers (provided you sign up for at least its Premium plan).

It also calculates, files, and pays federal and state taxes (local tax filings are accessible in premium tiers), as well as year-end W-2s/1099s submission. Unlike ADP, QuickBooks Payroll features an internal accounting application designed exclusively for small businesses called QuickBooks that works in tandem with its payroll system.

TriNet Zenefits

TriNet Zenefits (previously Zenefits) is a complete personnel management solution that automates and streamlines HR, payroll, and benefits administration. It’s great for organizations in highly regulated industries since it comes with strong compliance capabilities that help them stay on top of the latest laws.

TriNet Zenefits’ compliance capabilities, in addition to advising services, provide built-in overtime and break safeguards, as well as pay stubs that comply with most state standards. It also includes an online “Compliance Assistant” that keeps track of your HR, payroll, and benefits compliance, as well as the crucial form submission deadlines.

TriNet Zenefits, on the other hand, offers its employee pay processing solution as an add-on tool and has a five-employee minimum, unlike ADP and the other software in this guide (excluding Rippling), which provide payroll as a base product and have no minimum user requirements. It includes limitless pay runs, automatic federal, state, and local tax filings, and state new hire reporting.

Employees can access their pay stubs via a website, and you can pay them via direct deposit. If you need time tracking tools, all of its plans include a time and attendance solution at no additional cost; this is a separate product under ADP.


Paychex, like ADP, is a full-featured payroll system that offers a variety of packages for small to enterprise-level enterprises, including solopreneurs and the self-employed—a feature that none of the other solutions on this list give. Sign up for one of Paychex’s premium plans to obtain a dedicated payroll professional who will handle all of your employee pay processing and payroll tax needs.

It offers many HR solutions, including new employee onboarding, background screening, and learning management tools, in addition to payroll. It also takes care of your federal, state, and local tax payments and filings, as well as W-2 and 1099 tax reporting, albeit these services come at an additional cost. While both ADP and Paychex provide workers’ compensation and employee benefit plans, Paychex is the only company that offers a financial wellness program. Short-term loans, educational resources, and other tools are available to help employees meet their financial goals.


Rippling is the only company in our guide that offers IT management services for company-issued laptops and apps. It even works with over 500 other apps. This makes it suitable for businesses that wish to automate computer provisioning and de-provisioning while also expediting important HR and payroll activities.

However, in addition to the main personnel management platform, which is a mandatory solution, you must pay for each HR, payroll, and IT module. Furthermore, unlike ADP, it does not offer free live phone help. If you require one-on-one HR support, Rippling’s HR Help Desk module, which includes phone and email support, is the way to go. Rippling’s payroll product, like TriNet Zenefits’, is an add-on to its HR software. It has a comprehensive payroll feature set, including automatic tax computations and filings, as well as direct deposit payment choices, in addition to IT and HR administration capabilities. You can also print physical checks, but you won’t have access to payroll cards or on-demand pay like you would with ADP, Paychex, or Gusto. It does, however, automatically integrate your HR data with payroll, which can save you time.