The Best Construction Payroll Software 2024: Compared

QuickBooks is, overall, the best construction payroll software. It allows you to fully automate payroll and taxes, streamlines workers’ comp and benefits administration, enables on-site time tracking, and helps ensure that your business stays fully compliant.

That said, there are plenty of other excellent payroll software solutions on the market, with unique advantages, so an alternative might be better suited to your particular business needs. That’s why we’ve reviewed and compared the top 7 payroll software in 2024, so you can learn all about their features, pricing plans, and pros & cons to make an informed decision.

The Best Construction Payroll Software Ranked

  1. QuickBooks — Overall the best construction payroll software
  2. Paychex — Robust HR and payroll solution with benefits and workers’ comp insurance
  3. Homebase — Fully automated payroll and taxes for hourly teams
  4. Gusto — Simplified time & attendance tracking, plus robust job and labor cost reports
  5. ADP — Compliant hiring, onboarding, and payroll in one platform
  6. Patriot Software — The most cost-effective generic payroll solution on the market
  7. OnPay — Multi-state payroll with advanced PTO management

The Best Construction Payroll Software Reviewed

Here’s a closer look at the top construction payroll software, their core features and functionalities, pricing plans, and pros & cons:

1. QuickBooks Payroll — Overall Best Construction Payroll Software 

A screenshot of QuickBooks Payroll

Starting Price Free Plan Top Features Labor Cost Time Tracking
$22.50/month + $6/month per employee • Automated payroll and taxes
• Workers’ comp administrationEmployee self-service portal

QuickBooks is a feature-rich platform that helps people in the construction industry manage payroll, track your team’s time on-site and on the go, and provide HR support and benefits to your workers. People in the construction industry can utilize the platform to automate payroll and payroll taxes for both FTEs (full-time employees) and contractors, organize their finances, and generate insightful reports that help them make informed decisions.

QuickBooks is ideal for construction businesses with employees who have different hourly rates. You can create different pay rates for each crew member, as well as multiple pay rates for the same worker that vary depending on the job. This helps ensure that everyone gets paid the right amount, all the while allowing you to easily track expenses and labor costs for each project.

You’ll also be able to track hours worked, review and approve timesheets, and create, edit, and share schedules with your team to ensure that every team member is on the correct job site at the right time, which makes managing payroll much easier.

Another reason to opt for QuickBooks Payroll is that it helps protect your construction business and your workers with workers’ comp. The platform ensures that you stay compliant and never miss a payment, thanks to automated, pay-as-you-go premiums.

Read our in-depth QuickBooks review for more information.

QuickBooks Payroll Pricing

There are three QuickBooks Payroll pricing plans to choose from:

  • Payroll Core — $22.50/month + $6/month per employee
  • Payroll Premium — $40/month + $8/month per employee
  • Payroll Elite — $62.50/month + $10/month per employee

What’s worth noting is that some key features, like tracking time and access to a mobile app with a GPS, are not available on the cheapest plan. In other words, you’d pretty much have to opt for a Premium or an Elite plan as a construction business.

Pros

  • Automated payroll and tax filing
  • Workers’ comp and benefits administration
  • Built-in time tracking and shift scheduling
  • Labor cost and expense tracking per project
  • In-depth construction reporting

Cons

  • Time tracking is not available with the Core subscription

2. Paychex — Comprehensive HR and Payroll Solution With Benefit Management and Workers’ Comp Insurance

A screenshot of Paychex's Dashboard

Starting Price Free Plan Top Features Labor Cost Time Tracking
$39/month + $5/month per employee • On-site check printing
• HR Library and employee handbook builder
• Electronic OSHA reports

Paychex is an HR and payroll solution for construction businesses that simplifies payroll, helps you cut down on processing time, and helps you fuel job site productivity and worker safety.

The platform lets you run unlimited payroll, automates your tax filing, and helps you stay OSHA compliant. It also features an employee self-service platform, where all your workers can access their pay and tax information, enroll in benefits packages, and stay informed about the latest business activities.

Additionally, Paychex provides workers’ comp insurance, protecting both your employees and your business in the event of a workplace injury. You’ll also have an option to receive a comprehensive Workers’ Compensation Report, allowing you to compare your actual responsibilities against what you’re currently paying your provider.

However, Paychex is on the pricier side compared to competitors but the modular approach makes it worthwhile as you can choose the support you need. If you run a smaller business, Patriot would be a more budget-friendly option.

Read our in-depth Paychex review for more information.

Paychex Pricing Plans

Paychex offers three pricing tiers to choose from:

  • Essentials — $39/month + $5/month per employee
  • Select — Custom quote
  • Pro — Custom quote

Pros

  • Unlimited payroll and automated tax filing
  • The ability to pay FTEs and contractors
  • Helps you generate electronic OSHA reports
  • Lets you compliantly hire and onboard new workers
  • Provides Workers’ Comp insurance and an in-depth report

Cons

  • Employee benefits are a paid add-on

3. Homebase — Fully Automated Payroll and Taxes for Hourly Teams

A screenshot of Homebase's Dashboard

Starting Price Free Plan Top Features Labor Cost Time Tracking
$39/month + $6/month per employee • Time tracking
• Automated payroll and tax filing
• Pay advances

Homebase is a simple, easy-to-use payroll solution for construction businesses with hourly workers. It comes with a clock-in app for your on-site and field teams, lets you create and edit shift schedules in a free mobile app, and lets you export timesheets and instantly convert them into wages in payroll.

The app automatically calculates wages and taxes and issues 1099s and W-2s, ensuring everyone gets paid the correct amount and helping you stay compliant. You can even set up payroll to run completely automatically (including payments to each worker) for every pay period, saving valuable time and removing the chance of human error.

What’s unique about Homebase is that it offers pay advances for your team. They can opt to cash out before their next paycheck if they’re strapped for cash, and Homebase will cover all the costs and liability. In other words, you can offer this perk to your employees without affecting your payroll or your cash flow.

Read our in-depth Homebase review for more information.

Homebase Pricing Plans

Homebase has a single, transparent pricing plan for payroll at $39/month + $6/month per employee. There are no additional setup fees or contract obligations. You pay as you go and can cancel anytime.

Pros

  • A single pricing plan with access to all features
  • The ability to set payroll and taxes on autopilot
  • Clock-in app for your on-site and field teams
  • The ability to convert timesheets into wages with one click
  • Perks and pay advances for your team

Cons

  • No project-specific tracking of time or mileage tracking

4. Gusto — Simplified Time and Attendance Tracking, Plus In-Depth Job and Labor Cost Reports

A screenshot of Gusto's Dashboard

Starting Price Free Plan Top Features Labor Cost Time Tracking
$40/month + $6/month per employee • Time and attendance tracking
• Job and labor cost reports
• Workers’ comp administration

Gusto is another easy-to-use payroll app with all the key functionalities construction businesses require. It allows you to easily track time and attendance, lets you generate in-depth job and labor cost reports, streamlines benefits and workers’ comp administration, and lets you automate payroll and tax filing.

What’s unique about Gusto is that it gives you valuable insight into the profitability of each project. You can use the platform to break down costs by project, specific task, or even employee. The breakdown includes wages, workers’ comp, benefits, and more, allowing you to give your clients more accurate bids. The one thing not accounted for is material costs, so you’ll have to keep this in mind when calculating the overall total cost of a project.

What’s worth noting is that Gusto partners with NEXT Insurance, allowing you to set up workers’ comp with a pay-as-you-go basis, so you can pay what you owe with each payroll instead of having to pay lump sums at the end of each year.

The platform supports single-state payroll, including W-2s and 1099s, so it’s ideal for construction companies working on local projects. However, this is a huge drawback if you have multiple construction sites in different states, in which case QuickBooks or Paychex are better alternatives.

Read our in-depth Gusto review for more information.

Gusto Pricing Plans

There are three Gusto pricing plans to choose from:

  • Simple — $40/month + $6/month per employee
  • Plus — $80/month + $12/month per employee
  • Premium — Custom quote

Pros

  • Automated payroll for salaried employees and contractors
  • Built-in time and attendance tracking
  • Comprehensive job and labor cost reports
  • Partners with a workers’ comp provider

Cons

  • Doesn’t support multi-state payroll
  • Priority support is a paid add-on

5. ADP — Compliant Hiring, Onboarding, and Payroll in One Platform

A screenshot of ADP's Dashboard

Starting Price Free Plan Top Features Labor Cost Time Tracking
Custom Quote • Compliant hiring and onboarding
• Time tracking across multiple job sites
• Compliance reports

ADP is an HCM (Human Capital Management) solution, meaning it merges the functionalities of HR software and a payroll solution in one app. It helps you collect accurate hours across multiple job sites, streamline payroll, calculate costs, and stay fully compliant with all applicable laws, rules, and regulations.

In addition to automating payroll and taxes, ADP helps you discover, hire, onboard, and retain top talent. The platform lets you instantly post on more than 100 job boards, filter candidates by experience, skill set, and credentials, and offer competitive salaries based on up-to-date industry benchmarks.

Another advantage of ADP is the fact that it comes with an intuitive mobile app that facilitates clock-in and lets your team access their information on the go, including pay statements, benefits, accrued time off, work schedules, and more.

What ADP is lacking, compared to alternatives like QuickBooks and Paychex, is the ability to track time and calculate costs for specific projects. It makes up for it with great integration capabilities and an API (Application Programming Interface), allowing you to connect it with your entire software stack, including your accounting and project management software.

Read our in-depth ADP review for more information.

ADP Pricing Plans

There are four different ADP pricing plans available on the official website, but the company doesn’t actually publicly reveal the pricing information. In other words, you’d have to contact ADP for a custom quote, which will vary depending on your team size and the functionalities you need.

Pros

  • Lets you post job ads on 100+ recruitment platforms with a single click
  • Helps you compliantly hire and onboard top talent
  • Streamlines tracking of time, payroll, and tax filing
  • Helps you stay compliant with government regulations, union contracts, and OSHA
  • Comes with an intuitive mobile app

Cons

  • No project-specific time tracking and cost calculation

6. Patriot Software — The Most Cost-Effective Generic Payroll Solution on the Market

A screenshot of Patriot's Dashboard

Starting Price Free Plan Top Features Labor Cost Time Tracking
$17/month + $4/month per employee 30-day free trial • Automated PTO Tracking
• Multiple Pay Rates and Payroll Frequencies
• Employee Portal

Patriot Software is one of the cheapest payroll solutions on the market, given that it offers all the core functionalities you need at almost half the price of other payroll software.

It lets you customize payroll and tax filing, set up multiple hourly rates for different workers and jobs, pay FTEs and contractors, and even pay different groups of employees at varying intervals.

The payroll functionality is fully customizable, so you can even add deductions, benefits, overtime, and other criteria into the automated payroll calculations.

Patriot Software also lets you customize time off accruals and automatically tracks each employee’s PTO (paid time off), as well as includes all hours and days off when calculating each worker’s payroll.

Your team will also have access to an employee self-service portal, where they can see all the relevant pay and tax information, their accrued PTO, and important company-wide announcements.

The reason why Patriot Software is near the bottom of our list is that it lacks construction-specific features, like compliance forms and reports, labor costs, and project-specific time tracking.

Learn more in our Patriot accounting review.

Patriot Software Pricing Plans

There are two pricing plans to choose from:

  • Basic — $17/month + $4/month per employee
  • Full Service — $37/month + $4/month per employee

The Full Service plan includes done-for-you tax filing.

Pros

  • Affordable and easy to use
  • Customizable hours, bonuses, and deductions
  • Multiple pay rates for hourly employees
  • Automated PTO accruals
  • Customizable payroll reports

Cons

  • No construction-specific functionalities (e.g., compliance)

7. OnPay — Multi-State Payroll with Advanced PTO Management

A screenshot of OnPay's Dashboard

Starting Price Free Plan Top Features Labor Cost Time Tracking
$40/month + $6/month per employee 30-day free trial • Custom payroll reports
• Multi-state Payroll for FTEs and contractors
• Advanced PTO management

OnPay is a simple HR and payroll tool that allows you to pay your FTEs and contractors in multiple states, automate HR admin, and generate custom payroll reports with valuable data regarding labor and project cost.

You can utilize OnPay for advanced PTO management, with custom time-off policies and automatic PTO accrual. The platform also helps you compliantly onboard new workers, organize employee documents, and easily share crucial business updates and documentation with your team.

OnPay also features fully automated tax calculation and filing for all 50 states in the U.S., and their experts will even file Form 941 quarterly and Form 940 at the end of each year for you.

One of the biggest drawbacks of OnPay is that it doesn’t offer time tracking, so you’ll have to rely on a different app or manually keep track of everyone’s hours worked using spreadsheets. This, and the lack of construction-specific functionalities is the reason why it’s at the very bottom of our list, although it’s an excellent payroll solution otherwise.

Read our in-depth OnPay review for more information.

OnPay Pricing Plans

OnPay has a single pricing plan. The base monthly fee is $40, while each employee you add to the account will cost you an additional $6/month. You also get a 30-day free trial, so you can test OnPay risk-free.

Pros

  • Automates tax calculations and filing in all 50 states
  • Unlimited multi-state payroll
  • Advanced PTO management
  • Compliant onboarding with onboarding checklists

Cons

  • No time tracking
  • No compliance forms or reports

The Best Construction Payroll Software Compared

Here’s a quick reference table so you have a better overview of what each payroll software provider offers and how the different solutions compare head-to-head:

Payroll Software Starting Price Free Plan Top Features Labor Cost Time Tracking Mobile App
QuickBooks Payroll $22.50/month + $6/month per employee • Automated payroll and taxes
• Workers’ comp administrationEmployee self-service portal
Paychex $39/month + $5/month per employee • On-site check printing
• HR Library and employee handbook builder
• Electronic OSHA reports
Homebase $39/month + $6/month per employee • Time tracking
• Automated payroll and tax filing
• Pay advances
Gusto $40/month + $6/month per employee • Time and attendance tracking
• Job and labor cost reports
• Workers’ comp administration
ADP Custom Quote • Compliant hiring and onboarding
• Time tracking across multiple job sites
• Compliance reports
Patriot Software $17/month + $4/month per employee 30-day free trial • Automated PTO Tracking
• Multiple Pay Rates and Payroll Frequencies
• Employee Portal
OnPay $40/month + $6/month per employee 30-day free trial • Custom payroll reports
• Multi-state Payroll for FTEs and contractors
• Advanced PTO management

Conclusion — What is the Best Payroll Software for Construction?

The best payroll software for construction companies in 2024 is QuickBooks. It helps you automate payroll and taxes, lets you pay different hourly rates for FTEs and contractors, streamlines workers’ comp administration, and helps you track hours worked and easily schedule shifts.

The platform also helps your business stay compliant, lets you generate insightful payroll reports, and features an employee self-service portal where they can access all their relevant pay, tax, PTO, and other information.

How We Test Payroll Software

We focus on the following criteria when testing, reviewing, and comparing payroll software:

  • Pricing — The available pricing plans, including both the monthly fee for the platforms and the monthly cost per employee. We also look at any free trials or free plans that enable users to test the platforms in action before committing.
  • Features — All the available features and functionalities on different plans, and the benefits they provide to construction businesses in particular.
  • Integrations — Native integrations with third-party time tracking, accounting, HR, and other software, as well as the availability of an API (Application Programming Interface) for building custom integrations.
  • Automation — Payroll, tax filing, hiring, onboarding, and other automations that save valuable time and eliminate the chance of human error.
  • Ease of use — The platform’s UI (User Interface), navigation, and overall ease of use.
  • Third-Party Reviews — Reviews by other users on reputable third-party review sites.

How to Choose the Best Payroll Software

Here’s what you should focus on to ensure that you choose the best payroll software for your construction business:

  • Budget — How much money you can invest in the platform, what the total monthly price will be considering your organization size, and whether you’ll need to pay extra for specific add-ons.
  • Key features — What core features you need and whether they are all available on a pricing plan you can comfortably afford. Payroll software should make life easier for human resources or small businesses. Look for payroll features like direct deposits, integrated solutions for construction teams, government agencies, and crew members, compliance reporting, online payroll, accurate time tracking, union reporting, job costing, and more.
  • Ease of use — How simple or complex the platform is, and whether you’ll need to invest time and money to train your team on how to properly use it. Certified payroll reports and the overall payroll process should be easy for multiple jobs, paying employees, prevailing wage, generating pay stubs, and more for construction projects.
  • Scalability — How easy would it be to upscale to a more expensive pricing plan, add new users, or introduce new functionalities or add-ons to your account later down the line. If you’re a business owner who is looking to save time and run payroll and HR at scale, make sure you choose software that can handle growth.
  • Customer support — What options are there for contacting customer support, what their working hours are, and how fast you can expect a response if you have a question or any issue with the software.

FAQs

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Aleksandar Stevanovic
Software Reviews Expert

Aleksandar Stevanovic spent 10 years honing his craft as a freelance content writer. He has a degree in Economics, and extensive experience in software, crypto, and cybersecurity industries. He covers a multitude of topics, writing factual and informative articles, helping individuals better understand the intricacies of the online world. Over the last two years, his research focus shifted more towards tech and software content, as evidenced by his publications on CEX.IO, Business2Community, and Techopedia. He believes in simplifying complex topics and bringing them closer to like-minded individuals. His work is as detail-oriented as it is creative, and is designed to…