Even the most seasoned entrepreneurs face problems when starting a new firm. Since there are so numerous steps involved, it’s normal for some components to be put to the side if they aren’t urgent.

Some small business owners may excel in hiring and managing exceptional employees, as well as marketing their products and services to expand their consumer base. Those abilities, however, will not be able to shine unless there is a dedication to properly executing the essential operations of any organization. Payroll is one of these operations.

how to calculate payroll costs

It’s critical to learn how to compute payroll for your company before recruiting new staff. It will save you time and maybe thousands of dollars in fines by avoiding paycheck disappointments, and it may even result in a decreased turnover.

You may do the math yourself (time worked X wage rate), utilize an internet calculator, or use the software. This post will explain how to calculate payroll costs.

How to Calculate Payroll Costs?

1. Calculate the Total Amount of  Time You Worked Throughout the Period.

To begin conducting payroll, you’ll need to determine how many hours each person has performed throughout the course of the period. This will be overall work hours for hourly workers (and minutes if you wish to settle exact figures). It will be a defined amount of hours agreed upon at the time of employment for salaried employees (like a regular 40 hours, irrespective of actual hours labored). At this time, you’ll require to have decided on a payment schedule. This schedule indicates whether you pay staff weekly, bimonthly, monthly, or annually.

See Also: 5 ADP Payroll Alternatives you should consider 

Salaried Employees’ Total Work Time

Your salaried staff should be paid the same amount each working month (until you have a nonexempt remunerated position and are lawfully needed to pay out over time acted).

how to calculate payroll costs

When you hire a new employee, you’ll agree on a fixed yearly wage and a specific number of times for which they’ll be compensated. When an exempted employee is employed on an annual salary basis, they must work at least 40 hours per week. They can work longer hours, but they should be aware that they would not be paid more. Most businesses do not need exempt employees to log their time because their work hours are usually predetermined.

Salaried Nonexempt Employees

On the other hand, nonexempt salaried workers are exempt from this restriction. Although it is uncommon, some firms will give their nonexempt workers a salary, which entails a set weekly wage plus any overtime they perform.

salaried nonexempt employees

Because of the nonexempt nature of the role,  federal labor laws cover this for workers. Anticipation of employees to work a certain amount of hours per week, but they should compensate at an overtime rate if they work more than that. To manage this effectively, time tracking is done.

Hourly Employees’ Total Work Time

Determining total work hours for hourly workers is somewhat more challenging than for salaried staff, but it’s not too difficult. Basically, you’ll sum up all of an employee’s hours and minutes for the payment period.

See Also: Steps to hire your first employee

2. Make a Gross Pay Calculation (Prior Deductions & Taxes)

You can compute gross compensation after knowing how many hours you’ll be paying each employee. Gross salary is an employee’s total compensation before taxes and various deductions, or, to put it another way, their rate of pay multiplied by the time spent.

3. Create a List of Your Payroll Deductions

Payroll deductions must be subtracted from an employee’s gross compensation before computing their final pay. We recommend producing a comprehensive record of each employee’s deductions, including whether they are pre-tax or post-tax. It’s important to remember that we’re segregating tax rates from payroll deductions in this piece.

payroll deductions

You’ll need to put all of your payroll deductions together to get a total. Most deductions, such as insurance, have monthly premiums, which are the same amount. However, some depend on the employee’s compensation for the time (retirement contributions).

See Also: How to Deal with an Underperforming Employee

4. Calculate the Total Payroll Taxes

You’ll need to figure out how much money your employees owe in taxes and how to calculate payroll costs. Without a payroll converter, this can be not easy. When you hire your employees, they should fill out a W-4 form, which you can use to figure out what proportion of their pay you need to withdraw for federal, regional, and local taxes. The Internal Revenue Service (IRS) is also a valuable resource.

5. Deductions and Taxes are Subtracted from Gross Pay

Begin with the gross sum you computed in step two to arrive at the employee’s ultimate paycheck total. In addition, you’ll require the entire non-tax deductions and levies from stages three and four. Plainly deduct all withholding sums from gross salary at this juncture.


There is limation in benefits to a basic wage and employment taxes. It is given at the employer’s choice, but you’ll need to provide at least some to recruit and retain good employees in most circumstances.

How Payroll Can Assist You in Growing Your Business

It takes more than just compensating your staff to run a smooth payroll system. It brings value in a variety of other ways as well. Knowing everything there is to be aware of your company’s payroll will help you decide whether hourly or base compensation makes more sense. It can help you figure out if hiring additional people is feasible or how much particular activities or responsibilities are costing your company depending on the number of time workers spend doing their jobs.

payroll assist in growing business

Mastering the payroll system deep and out may also help you see what tax implications my personnel decisions may have and help you avoid making costly mistakes.

See Also: Strategies to improve employee development 


When you hire more staff, payroll calculations get more difficult. However, keep in mind that the procedures are practically the same for the process to calculate payroll costs. The ultimate objective is to pay all workers and tax authorities on time and the proper amount. 

While some businesses prefer to do everything by hand, others use internet resources such as payroll planners and software. To prevent fines, acquaint yourself with IRS tax guidelines and federal payroll standards, regardless of the software you use to compute payroll.