Remote Payroll Review 2024: Is it Right for Your Business?

Our Verdict

Cost-effective solution for small businesses wanting to go global

We found Remote to be a reliable choice tailored for small teams operating across multiple locations. The platform offers the convenience of managing payments and tax filings for diverse types of workers spanning over 200 countries, all at a reasonable cost. Additionally, Remote has generous offers such as complimentary HRIS tools and special rates for charitable organizations and startups.

However, due to its pricing structure based on per-employee rates, larger corporations might find that Remote isn’t a cost-effective solution. In such cases, they may find enterprise-level solutions like Deel and ADP more suitable for their needs.

Pros

  • Available in 200+ countries
  • Free HRIS
  • Discounts for startups
  • Charitable services
  • Offers an Employer of Record (EOR) service

Cons

  • No customer support via phone
  • Classification not included in contractor plan

Remote Plans & Pricing

We found Remote to be an affordable option with some generous discounts and free plans. Like many global payroll providers, including Deel and Papaya, it has a modular structure so customers can pick and choose the features they need.

Contractor Management Global payroll Contractor Management Plus Employer of Record (EOR)
Monthly Cost $29 per contractor $50 per employee $99 per contractor Starts at $599 per month
Free Trial ✅ – 30-day free trial
Users Unlimited (pay per contractor) Unlimited (pay per employee) Unlimited (pay per contractor) Unlimited
PTO Management ✅ via the free HRIS plan ✅ via the free HRIS plan ✅ via the free HRIS plan ✅ via the free HRIS plan
Expense Management ✅ via the free HRIS plan ✅ via the free HRIS plan ✅ via the free HRIS plan ✅ via the free HRIS plan
Reporting Custom Custom Custom Custom
Customer Support Email and live chat support Email and live chat support Email and live chat support Email and live chat support

Contractor Management – $29 Per Employee

If you just need to pay freelancers across different countries, Remote’s contractor only plan is an affordable option. The monthly rate is comparable with solutions like Oyster and Papaya but you get support for more locations.

As you only have to pay for active contractors, you can keep your costs down without offboarding freelancers. That means you can maintain your network, even if you often go months between using workers for projects.

Global Payroll – $50 Per Employee

Remote charges per employee rather than a fixed monthly rate, unlike some global payroll providers. This price model may be more cost-effective if you have a small team. Say you only have six people on your payroll, you’d only pay $300 a month rather than $500 to $600 as standard.

The downside is that Remote’s per-employee pricing model isn’t scalable. As your team grows, your costs will increase exponentially. That’s why Remote is better for small teams that outsource a lot of work like marketing agencies and tech startups.

Contractor Management Plus – $99 Per Contractor

The Plus plan has all the same features as the Contractor Management plan but also offers compliance management and indemnity coverage. Basically, Remote helps you classify workers and, in the event they get it wrong, they’ll cover up to $100,000 per contractor in fines.

We would’ve liked to see Remote include all the compliance management for contractors in one package like Deel. Given the risks of misclassification, many businesses won’t hire freelancers unless they’re positive about their status. However, some users may appreciate the option to do the research themselves and reduce their subscription fees.

Employer of Record (EOR) – Starts at $599 per month

Like many reputable global payroll providers, Remote now offers an EOR service. They’ll hire workers on your behalf so you don’t have to establish an entity overseas.

At $599 per month, Remote is on par with other providers including Oyster and Papaya. They don’t have any onboarding or offboarding fees either so you don’t have to worry about extra costs.

The plan also includes benefits administration tailored to each location. Many countries require employers to provide specific benefits such as health insurance, retirement funds, and workers’ compensation. Remote ensures you’re staying compliant with local labor laws while finding the best deals.

To cancel your Remote subscription for any of the plans, you need to inform the company so you can begin the offboarding process. You also have to remove any workers from your accounts. Remote will then complete the final pay cycle and send you the final bill.

Remote Payroll Overview

Starting price $29 per contractor per month or $50 per employee per month
Best for Startups with remote, distributed teams
Customer support Email and live chat support
App integrations 8 including BambooHR, Gusto, and Personio
Security & Compliance Encryption, breach monitoring, and training
Reporting & analytics
Mobile app ✅ for employees and contractors
Auto-alerts and reminders
International Payroll
Digital Payslips

Remote’s Standout Features

We found Remote to be a feature-rich platform which allows both employees and managers to perform a wide range of tasks. In this section, we’ll look at the best ones in more detail.

Payroll Management

Manage payrolls and check outstanding invoices with Remote

Remote’s payroll feature has all the tools you’d expect to see including automated payroll, direct deposits, and invoice management.

As standard for a payroll provider, Remote has a cut-off date of the 11th for salaried employees. We were happy to see they’ll let you run an off-cycle payment if a new hire has just missed this date so they’re not waiting for almost two months to get paid.

What we liked about the platform was the ability to categorize all the payments under different tabs. You can easily save, order, and monitor your outgoing payments to employees and contractors without getting lost on the dashboard. There’s a logical progression to each feature which makes it very easy to navigate.

Compliance Management

Remote offers a range of tools for compliance management

Remote has a range of tools to help international companies avoid non-compliance with payroll tax and labor laws. They can help you file taxes correctly for each country and create contracts in line with relevant labor laws.

We were happy to see Remote offers a specialized service to help companies with classification. Not all providers have this feature but it’s a growing issue, especially in the US. If you misclassify a contractor, you could receive penalties from both the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) and the Department of Labor (DOL).

However, we thought the resources were very in-depth and comprehensive. You can find everything from employee handbooks for different countries’ labor laws to guides to paying workers compliantly.

HRIS

Track time worked with timesheets

Remote’s free HRIS module is a compelling reason to choose the software. While many other providers for small businesses have HR features, many of the ones we’ve reviewed include them in the paid plans.

We were impressed by the sheer amount of tasks you could do using the HRIS:

  • Hiring and onboarding
  • Time tracking
  • Leave management
  • Expense management
  • Employee self-service

While exploring the dashboard, we found all the features intuitive but highly configurable. For example, the time tracking feature has various fields to help you record hours worked and details about projects.

Integrations

Remote allows you to connect with a range of popular apps including:

  • Bamboo HR
  • Greenhouse
  • Gusto
  • HiBob
  • Personio
  • Sequoia
  • Easop
  • Zelt

They also have a Remote API to help you connect with systems across different countries. That means even if one of your subdivisions uses niche software specific to their location, you can still integrate and share data.

Remote Customer Reviews

Remote has a positive reputation with an aggregate rating of 4.5/5 on G2 and 4.8/5 on Capterra. Many Remote payroll reviews praise the customer service—especially impressive when you consider all onboarding, offboarding, and consultancy services are included in the pricing plans. Users also comment on the extensive knowledge base and talk about how easily they can find quick answers to their questions.

A customer review of Remote on G2

A few Remote payroll reviews mention missing features or a lack of choices. However, these complaints are usually minor. We think these cons make sense given that Remote is a relatively new platform and still building its feature set—some competitors like QuickBooks and ADP have been running for decades.

A customer review of Remote on G2

What is Remote Payroll Good For?

If you’re a startup, we recommend you consider Remote. The platform is not only budget-friendly but also offers a 15% discount for startups that lasts for 12 months for unlimited workers. You can use this time to build a solid base for your payroll operations before you pay the full price.

Small international agencies could also consider Remote. If you rely on contractors, and you only have a core team of a few full-time employees, you can access a lot of features and support for a low monthly rate.

Remote vs Top Competitors

Let’s have a look at how Remote compares to other top payroll providers to get a better idea of its strengths and weaknesses:

Remote Gusto Papaya Global Rippling
Best for Startups with remote, distributed teams Small US companies with a handful of remote contractors Growing international companies Businesses looking for an all-in-one payroll, HR, and IT solution
Starting Price $29 per contractor per month $40 per month plus $6 per month $25 per month per worker Custom pricing
Free Trial ✅ – 30-day free trial
Standout Features • Free HRIS
• Support for worker classification
• Discounts for charities
• Range of integrations
• Local compliance support
• Discounts at volume
• Journal entry reconciliation
• Range of integrations
• Deep integration with the range of Rippling IT and HR products
Reporting Custom Custom Custom Custom
Mobile App ✅ for employees and contractors ✅ for employees ✅ for employees ✅ for employees

Remote vs Gusto

Gusto and Remote both cater to small businesses that hire workers overseas. However, Remote has more support for international teams as it offers an EOR service and covers more countries. Whereas Gusto has more features for US companies such as brokerage for ACA and HIPAA-compliant plans.

Generally, Gusto is a better option if you’re primarily based in the US and only have a few international contractors. Remote is best for distributed teams that operate in several jurisdictions.

Read our Gusto review for a more in-depth look at the platform.

Remote vs Papaya Global

As Papaya has tiered pricing, it’s a more scalable solution than Remote. The more workers you hire, the lower the charge per person.

However, Papaya has a higher starting price than Remote for many of its plans and places restrictions on the lowest tiers. It’s generally less budget-friendly for small businesses which is Remote’s target market.

Similar to Remote, Papaya offers an EOR service. They also have modules so you can choose the features you need and tailor the platform to your workforce.

Find out more details about Papaya in our Papaya Global review.

Remote vs Rippling

With its ecosystem of products, Rippling can support large companies across a wide range of departments. The payroll feature has deep integrations with a range of Rippling IT and HRIS products. There’s also a choice of up to 500 integrations so you have the ultimate flexibility over which apps you use.

Remote is more self-contained with just the HRIS and payroll features but has a lot of support for beginners and generous discounts. They’re a better option for startups and small businesses that need the basics at an affordable cost and may not have the in-house expertise to manage compliance.

Check out our Rippling review for a better idea of the platform’s use cases.

Verdict – is Remote Payroll Worth it?

Overall, we found Remote to be one of the best providers for small businesses. Founders can easily get started and grow their workforce using affordable payroll plans and compliance features. With Remote constantly adding new features, such as feedback tools and benefits administration, users will be able to cover more and more of their HR and accounting tasks.

How We Test Payroll Software

To ensure our reviews are comprehensive and consistent, we follow the same process for each payroll software:

  • Pricing – We check the affordability of all the pricing plans and how many tools they offer compared to competitors.
  • Features – Using the free trial, we explore the tools and see how well they work in different scenarios.
  • Integrations – We see whether the software connects with all the most essential and popular business apps.
  • Automation – Since automation is such a key feature of payroll software, we assess the range of features. We see how many tasks you can automate as well as the overall efficiency and accuracy.
  • Ease of use – During our tests, we see how quickly we can find different tools and learn how to use them. We consider how many steps each task takes and how much the user is required to do.
  • Third-Party Reviews – We analyze hundreds of user reviews across sites like G2 and Capterra to which businesses use the software and how well it works for them. Reading user reviews also tells us about the overall reliability of the platform.

How to Choose the Best Payroll Software

There are lots of factors to consider when comparing payroll software. Here’s a list of the most important criteria to help you narrow down your choices:

  • Price Look for platforms that fit your budget and only make you pay for the features you need.
  • FeaturesEnsure you have access to all the necessary tools and that you can easily add new ones as your requirements change.
  • Scalability – Check whether you can get the same value and meet all your business needs if you upgrade.
  • Ease of useFind software that meets your team’s challenge level. It should be complex enough to perform all the tasks they need without being a struggle to use.
  • Integrations Make a checklist of all the tools you currently have and the ones you’ll need. Your ideal software should connect with most of them—if not all.
  • Customer supportAs you’re likely to run into issues, ensure your payroll has responsive support. It should allow you to make quick inquiries and get step-by-step expert guidance.

FAQs

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Rhiannon Stone
Technology Writer

Rhiannon Stone is an experienced web content creator with over four years in the industry and graduated with an MA in English. Before she began working with Techopedia, she traveled the world teaching Business English where her students worked in sectors such as banking, manufacturing, and telecommunications. After teaching Rhiannon joined a publishing house where she started her writing career. Now, Rhiannon is based in Greece and specializes in writing in-depth reviews and thought-out comparison content within SaaS, HR, and accounting to help Techopedia readers make fully-informed choices.