The Payroll Blog

News, tips, and advice for small business owners

  • Do You Owe the Nanny Tax?

    January 31

    Being a parent is hard work. From juggling multiple schedules, to managing a work / life balance, there is a good chance that from time to time you’re going to need a little extra help in your life. When looking to hire a nanny or household employee, you will have to make sure that this new employee is paid accurately. Often times, people believe these household employees can be paid under the table, which essentially means paying cash to avoid taxes. However, when it comes to household employees, it’s important that you’re paying the nanny tax.

  • Customer Service - January 25

    January 25

    When thinking about customer service, you probably are focusing more on the actual conversations with customers or ensuring you have a plan in place to help them throughout their buying journey with your small business. However, customer service is more than just the face-to-face interactions or the emails you send to customers and the help you provide when customers have questions or problems. To make your customer service efforts better than ever, we encourage you to look at other areas of customer service that you may have not considered.

  • Things Your Accountant Wants You to Know For Tax Season

    January 24

    According to Investopieda, “tax season is the time period between January 1 and April 15 of each year when individual taxpayers traditionally prepare financial statements and reports for the previous year”.  Experts are planning for this year to be even more complicated because it is the first tax year under the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act that was announced in 2018. Unless you love number crunching, chances are you don’t look forward to this time of year. From gathering receipts for eligible tax deductions, to collecting any necessary W2’s or 1099s, getting ready to do your taxes isn’t usually an enjoyable task. As a small business owner, things can get complicated fast, and it can be easy to make mistakes that could wind up costing you a lot in fines.

  • Federal Unemployment Tax Act (FUTA): 10 Things to Be Aware Of

    January 21

    Understanding the true cost of an employee can be confusing. After all, it’s not just an employee’s wages that business owners have to account for. There are also payroll taxes, benefits, and other associated costs that need to be considered.

  • Optimize Your Morning Routine

    January 18

    Being productive comes in waves; some days it’s easy to hop out of bed and be ready to hit the ground running, and other days you’re hitting the snooze button continuously. If you’re trying to be more productive this year and start crushing your goals, we found some articles that can help.

  • Client Corner: I Have a Bean

    January 16

    Pete Leonard is a seasoned small business owner, and since the beginning of his small business journey, has trusted SurePayroll with all of his business ventures. With a background in software, and now a passion for roasting coffee, Pete is currently on his fifth and most personal business. As the owner of roasting company I Have a Bean, and Café On The Park, both located in Wheaton, IL, he sat down with us and shared the personal story behind these businesses, his experiences as a small business owner, and advice for those aspiring to open their own business. 

  • All Work and No Play: 4 Tips to Change Your Workaholic Ways

    January 14

    We know that as a small business owner you wear multiple hats and are constantly on the go. While running your business is a huge priority in your life, as it is how you financially support yourself, taking breaks is necessary. Burnout and exhaustion happen easily and burning the midnight oil all the time isn’t good for you or your business.

  • New Year Health - January 11

    January 11

    Choosing to make your health a priority in the new year is a popular resolution for many. However, health can take on various forms that you may not be factoring into your resolutions. This week, we have some articles that will help you start 2019 on a well-rounded healthy note covering your physical, mental and financial health.

  • Self-Care for Small Business Owners

    January 8

    Self-care is a topic that is talked about frequently. With increasing stressors, such as struggling to find work / life balance, the negativity that lurks on the news and social media, and just day-to-day stressors, people have been looking for more ways to relax and escape from the negativity. As a small business owner, you likely know a thing or two about stress, burning the candle at both ends, and trying to keep your business, and life, on track. Since your business can’t run as efficiently without you there, it’s crucial to make sure you’re setting aside some time for yourself to recharge.  

  • New Year's Resolutions - January 4

    January 4

    Happy New Year! The start of a new year is the opportunity that many are looking for to start fresh and set some new goals. However, by January 17th many people stop pursuing these new resolutions altogether. If you’re looking to make some changes this year, we found some articles that might help. First of all, if you haven’t set any resolutions yet, don’t panic, because our first article says waiting can be best. Next, so you don’t waver from your goals, we found some very simple tips for helping your resolutions stick. Last up, check out some resolutions one small business owner set for business in 2019 that are still relatable today.

  • 2019 Trends and Changes - December 28

    December 28

    2019 is officially next week, and while it may just be another day on the calendar, the new year tends to bring in some changes. To help you get started, we found a couple of articles that could be useful in understanding 2019 a little better. First, taxes are going to be a little different in 2019 thanks to the new tax laws passed this year, so you’ll want to plan now to avoid any tax surprises. Next, the retail industry has been constantly changing thanks to technology advancing. If you’re a retail small business owner, you’ll want to check out the trends expected in the new year. Last up, saving for retirement is important, and the IRS has made some changes that will allow you to save even more.

  • What to Expect in 2019

    December 26

    As a small business owner, processing payroll is just one item on your to-do list, but ever-changing regulations and tax code updates can make it the most time-consuming task in a given week. These tax updates occur at the federal, state, and local levels, and depending on where your business is based and where your employees live, some small businesses have it tougher than others. We’ve started this monthly series to focus on state-specific tax considerations, to help you keep up with what’s changing around you.

  • Year-End Employee Tips - December 21

    December 21

    While giving thanks to your employees and showing appreciation is welcomed year-round, there is an extra emphasis on this at the end of the year. Another employee moment that pops up this time of year is annual performance reviews. This week, we found some articles that about how to end the year on a positive note, including ideas to give thanks to your employees, and how to put a more positive spin on the annual review (spoiler: not doing one).

  • Tax Changes to Expect in 2019 (Part 2)

    December 20

    When it comes to tax season, you’re likely crossing your fingers that a big refund is coming your way—but it’s important to get things in order now to help anticipate what your final tax liability will be. This year, it is suggested that people may owe more due to the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act (TCJA) signed into law last year. When the TCJA was enacted, it came with talking points that suggested many taxpayers would see a tax break as a result. But actually seeing this promised tax cut depends on the withholding allowance you have on file with your employer.  The TCJA also impacted itemized deductions and what can be claimed as tax-exempt.

  • 5 Payroll FAQs for 2019

    December 18

    Ready or not, 2019 is just a couple of weeks away. As a small business owner, the new year is an important time to set your business up for success, which includes evaluating payroll. While it is possible to put your payroll on cruise control with our Auto Payroll feature, you can’t set and forget payroll forever. Each year, certain information will have to be evaluated for accuracy. Because you’re busy prepping all of the things for year-end, we gathered a list of a frequently asked questions related to your 2019 payroll.

  • Have a Healthy New Year

    December 18

    In some ways it feels like we were just talking about New Year’s Resolutions, and other times we realize just how jam packed the year has been and how much has happened. If you’re looking to start the new year on a fresh start, we understand and have you covered. In the past, we did a series on focusing on three different areas of health: physical, mental, and financial. After all of the fun of the holidays with shopping, and eating all of the delicious food, if you need some inspiration about how to start the new year a bit healthier, we have some ideas.

  • Year-End Planning - December 14

    December 14

    Between the parties and fun of the holiday season, comes a lot of stress and planning for small business owners. It’s a time for evaluating how the year went, making plans and setting goals for the new year, and wrapping up important tax documentation. To help with the crazy that happens this time of year, we gathered articles about managing stress this season, year-end tax tips, and some ways to get you planning for the new year.

  • How Much Federal Tax is Taken Out of my Paycheck (2018)

    December 13

    Income taxes are top of mind right now, as we've all completed (or, are hopefully close to completing) the task of filing our returns to the IRS.

  • Tax Changes to Expect in 2019 (Part 1)

    December 10

    With just a few weeks until 2019, it’s important to get prepared for the new year. Even though it’s only December, it’s never too early to start thinking about tax season. If you’re wondering what you should know and the proposed tax brackets and numbers for 2019, we’ve got you covered.

  • Family Businesses - December 7

    December 7

    With an extra focus on family this time of year, we thought it would be a good time to talk about family run small businesses. Working with your family is going to be different than working with others; your family knows every single thing about you, including your strengths and weaknesses, and tend to be a bit more honest than others might be. Whether you are already in business and want to keep thriving, or looking for best tips to start, we have some articles that should help you out.