Best PEO for Startups
PEO services have become increasingly popular among startups due to their ability to share the load of HR-related tasks. These tasks might range from managing payrolls, benefits administration, or navigating through complex compliance laws, leaving you time to focus on what truly matters – growing your business.
In a co-employment setup, a PEO steps into the shoes of an employer, handling all administrative tasks. This means your business continues to function as normal while the PEO manages administrative tasks such as payroll processing, tax payments, and compliance assistance. They provide the much-needed reassurance for startups that their legal and HR “backbone” is being taken care of by professionals.
So why should your startup consider partnering with a PEO?
First and foremost, it brings significant time savings to the table. Outsourcing HR functions means you and your team can dedicate precious hours back to your key revenue-producing business operations. Another benefit lies in cost savings. PEOs can often get group insurance rates, reducing costs and making these benefits more accessible to your employees.
Compliance support, improved benefits offerings, recruitment assistance, you name it – PEOs provide advantages that are otherwise only available to larger companies.
11 Best PEO Companies 2023:
- ADP TotalSource®
- Papaya Global
- Engage PEO
- Infiniti HR
- Aspen HR
In the section below, we’re going to walk through some of the best PEO services that startups can take advantage of today. Let’s dive in!
1. ADP TotalSource
ADP TotalSource is a comprehensive PEO service provider perfect for businesses with 5 to 250 employees. Recognized for its exceptional HR solutions and support, this service takes on HR tasks and frees up companies to focus on their essential operations.
Services offered include payroll, benefits administration, compliance guidance, and HR proficiency. Pricing is typically calculated as a flat fee per employee or percentage of payroll, with the specific cost varying based on the size of your business and the services you opt into.
- ADP TotalSource is highly adaptable, working with each business to recognize their needs and come up with custom HR plans.
- Focused on helping growing businesses; consolidates services and streamlines processes.
- Facilitates optimum labor cost regulation through strategic benefits design, proactive compliance and addressing employee turnover and productivity.
- ADP holds IRS certifications and ensures financial protections and tax benefits.
- Can be overwhelming with “too many choices” in the user interface. ADP's HR software may be challenging to navigate for some users.
- Some users have reported that customer service can sometimes be slow or unresponsive.
- ADP has received numerous awards and recognitions for its exceptional PEO services.
- They have smooth integrations with over 300 business software applications for easy data sharing.
- Its focus on reducing the complexities of HR tasks allows businesses to concentrate more on growing revenues than managing day-to-day tasks.
- Great at managing OSHA compliance standards and certifications
Rippling PEO is a modern HR, payroll, benefits, and compliance service provider designed to meet the needs of startups and growing businesses. They’re a top-rated PEO that claims to save companies an average of $1,775 per employee per year on HR and benefits costs compared to other options.
Core services include HR management, IT management, payroll, time & attendance tracking, custom reporting, and streamlining of employee benefits. Pricing for Rippling's PEO services is not publicly listed, but quotes can be obtained directly from the company.
- Rippling claims to make remote work easier with features like automatic state tax registration and remote laptop management.
- The PEO offers an easy transition on and off the service without painful switching processes.
- Healthcare guidance is provided live, ensuring personalized support.
- Automated compliance services are provided to Rippling clients.
- Transparent pricing information is not readily available on the website.
- Rippling's software may be less familiar to users acquainted with traditional PEOs, which might imply a bit of a learning curve.
- Rippling offers a modern alternative to outdated legacy PEOs, focusing on simplification and ease of use.
- Setup and switching of HR and IT services are designed to be easy and efficient.
- “Healthcare concierges” provide real-time personalized healthcare guidance and support.
Paychex is a leading PEO provider that offers customized HR solutions. Services include all-in-one HR technology, accurate and on-time payroll processing, and help maintaining regulatory compliance.
Paychex stands out by providing personalized HR consultations, adaptable solutions, and proven HR technology. Pricing for Paychex's PEO services is based on your business size/payroll and services used.
- Paychex supports businesses in hiring and retaining employees, reducing administrative costs, and increasing productivity and profitability.
- Delivers services through a dedicated relationship manager, HR professional, payroll specialist, and employee benefits specialist, ensuring comprehensive support.
- Additional “à la carte” options are available, providing flexibility in the services you can choose.
- Streamlines common business tasks through consolidated technology and support.
- Pricing isn’t completely transparent upfront.
- If you want to handle global payroll, your business will have to plan for extra costs.
- Paychex offers personalized consultations with customizable solutions and proven HR technology.
- The platform includes a comprehensive suite of services delivered by a dedicated team of HR professionals.
- Their services maintain regulatory compliance, which is critical for small- and medium-sized businesses.
- Paychex ensures the client remains the legal employer and maintains control while receiving HR administrative support.
TriNet offers PEO services to small to medium businesses by taking over their HR responsibilities. This includes benefits administration, payroll processing, and regulatory compliance. PEOs, on average, can deliver over 27% improvement in return on investment and thousands in annual savings per employee, and TriNet meets these expectations. It tailors its HR solutions to different industries and company sizes.
Pricing for TriNet's PEO services vary based on factors such as the size of your business, your industry, location and specific needs. They require you to obtain a quote directly.
- TriNet's HR solutions cater to different industries and company sizes, ensuring personalized service.
- Reports indicate that employers working with TriNet have higher employee satisfaction levels regarding their benefits offerings compared to those without a PEO.
- The PEO model involves co-employment where TriNet assumes employer of record status for certain HR functions while the client maintains control over core business operations.
- Managing HR in-house can be time-consuming and expensive, while outsourcing with TriNet can save costs and free up time for business growth.
- Some users have mentioned that getting customer service can sometimes take longer than expected.
- The range of services offered may be overwhelming for first-time users or small businesses with simple needs.
- TriNet focuses on providing a comprehensive suite of services instead of focusing on individual tasks.
- It tailors its HR solutions to meet the needs of different industries and company sizes.
- TriNet serves over 16,000 SMBs across various industries.
- Can deliver over 27% improvement in return on investment and thousands in annual savings per employee (based on data from PEO users).
5. Papaya Global
When it comes to total global workforce solutions, Papaya Global is on top of the game. This PEO provider is second to none when it comes to meeting international payroll and people management needs. It takes an “omnipresent” approach by supporting different employment models in more than 160 countries, and pricing is done on a per-employee basis customized to each business’s specific needs.
- Automated payroll takes the headache out of compliance with labor laws and tax codes in each country.
- Time and potential human error are significantly reduced compared to manual processes.
- Their consolidated platform standardizes complex global payroll reporting into a single digestible view.
- Papaya employs in-country partners that continuously track regulatory changes to keep your payroll accurate.
- The global focus might be too broad and complex for businesses looking specifically for domestic PEO solutions.
- Costs may balloon quickly for startups with large employee numbers due to the per-employee pricing structure.
- Offer an “Employer of Record” solution that facilitates hiring in countries where your business lacks a legal entity.
- Their inclusive platform allows managers to oversee all global employees, costs, and governing labor laws through a single dashboard.
- Papaya supports remote teams through a self-service portal and org chart, helping build culture and engagement within remote teams.
- Global benefits, immigration permits, salaries, and management of contractors and independent workers are all guided by Papaya Global.
Offering a bundled payroll, HR, compliance, and benefits access package, Justworks is designed to handle business employment responsibilities efficiently. This PEO service improves access to high-quality health insurance options through its buying power, and their PEO Plus plan offers an even broader variety of nationwide health insurance plans to cater to diverse team needs.
The exact cost you can expect to pay with Justworks is determined by the number of employees in your business and the specific plan you choose.
- Justworks serves as a buffer against government complexity for employers.
- Seamless payroll services make it easy to pay everyone on your team.
- Certified HR consultants provide tailored guidance and best practices for managing people.
- Thanks to accreditation and stringent operational standards, Justworks instills trust and confidence in its clients.
- Their services might be more than what a small startup needs, which can result in unnecessary costs.
- Health insurance options might be overwhelming for teams who desire simplicity.
- Justworks offers full-service support to help businesses round the clock.
- The built-in HRIS tools allow users to manage their teams from one place.
- The PEO Plus plan offers access to a variety of nationwide health insurance plans.
- A customized employment program to meet business-specific needs can be designed by Justworks just for you.
Offering full-service HR solutions, Insperity is a go-to PEO provider for businesses of all sizes. The company combines top-notch HR service with robust HR technology, easing the burden of HR tasks and supporting employees. Their pricing structure is based on per-employee fees, providing a cost-effective solution for startups and growing businesses.
- Insperity’s human capital management platform supports employees and eases the burden of tedious HR tasks.
- Many of their clients appreciate the company's very personalized and supportive approach.
- The company helps in attracting investors and providing the infrastructure needed for growth.
- Insperity designs its HR support services to lighten administrative loads, maximize productivity, and manage risks.
- For very small startups, the cost per employee may be a disadvantage.
- The broad range of services might be overwhelming for businesses seeking basic PEO solutions.
- Full-service HR solutions are provided for businesses regardless of their size.
- Insperity gives businesses tools to focus on growth and gain a competitive advantage.
- The company's strong community commitment is reflected through contributions, volunteerism, and social responsibility.
- Insperity has more than 90 locations nationwide and has been established since 1986, proving a strong track record.
8. Engage PEO
Engage PEO excels in delivering full payroll processing and tax administration solutions for clients through a secure cloud-based technology platform and strict process disciplines. With an HR delivery team of professionals, Engage matches the people skills of HR professionals with the technical and strategic expertise of legal professionals. Their pricing is based on a pay-as-you-go structure that is calculated from the number of services used.
- Engage provides a suite of ACA-compliant benefits and administration services.
- They offer assistance to clients in ensuring compliance with ever-changing employment regulations.
- Engage offers tools to drive efficiency through integrated, secure, cloud-based HR technology solutions.
- The broad range of services might be more than what startups require.
- For businesses with fewer employees, the service cost may be relatively high.
- Engage provides comprehensive payroll processing and tax administration solutions through a secure cloud-based technology platform.
- Helps companies attract, recruit, and retain talent through first-class benefits and perks.
- Engage's network of licensed carrier partners offers workers' compensation insurance products and proactive claims management.
- Engage leverages over 25 years of experience to partner clients with large, desirable insurers and industry partners.
Deel is a professional employer organization (PEO) that focuses on offering both PEO and US payroll services. Targeted at companies looking to employ both international and US-based workers, Deel works under a co-employment agreement where they handle benefits, payroll, and HR while clients manage the daily workload.
For US payroll clients, Deel takes care of all payroll processing and tax obligations, with the client directly employing the workers. Deel's pricing is based on business size and the services used, typically charging a flat fee per employee or a percentage of your payroll.
- Handles state registration requirements for employing workers.
- Provides workers' compensation coverage and risk management.
- Calculates, files, and pays all federal and state payroll taxes.
- Offers full-service benefits administration and access to competitive plans.
- Payroll clients must register in each state themselves.
- Refers payroll clients to insurance and benefits providers instead of directly handling these areas.
- Provides comprehensive HR services like training, policies, and HR software suite for PEO clients.
- Offers a free HR software suite for payroll clients for onboarding, time off, documents, and expense tracking.
- Handles all workers' compensation claims processing for PEO clients.
- In the case of US payroll only, it still assists clients with tax obligations.
10. Infiniti HR
As an ideal PEO for franchises, hospitality businesses, and startups, Infiniti HR offers superior service, technology, and personalized support at a lower price than larger PEOs. It retains the client as the employer at the worksite while becoming the employer of record for legal and tax purposes. Infiniti HR's technology platform processes over $55 billion in annual payroll and uses data analytics to offer strategic advice to clients. Infiniti HR's pricing is dependent on the size of your business and the services you choose.
- Specializes in serving franchises, startups, and hospitality businesses.
- Processes substantial payroll amounts effectively through its technology platform.
- Provides a single integrated platform for core HR services.
- Delivers data analytics to minimize clients' total labor costs and employer liability risks.
- Transitions to using Infiniti HR can be challenging for hesitant employees.
- No direct service for workers’ compensation or benefits for non-PEO clients.
- Focuses on creating exceptional employee experiences.
- Provides on-demand HR advisory services.
- Empowers both client businesses and their workforces.
- Helps businesses adapt and compete more effectively.
11. Aspen HR
With a strong presence in startup hubs across the US, Aspen HR is a professional employer organization (PEO) tailored for startups. It proficiently handles administrative tasks like payroll, benefits administration, and compliance, allowing startups to concentrate on their main business operations. Aspen HR's services are designed and priced to help startups reduce costs while focusing on growth and managing HR effectively. To get exact price quotes, they require you to reach out to their sales team.
- Specialize in providing HR outsourcing services to startups.
- Has local offices in major startup hubs for better support.
- Stays updated with changing employment laws to ensure startups are compliant.
- Helps startups provide competitive benefits packages at reduced costs through economies of scale.
- Limited to supporting startups only, which doesn’t work for larger businesses.
- No direct service for payroll or workers’ compensation for non-PEO clients.
- Helps startups attract and retain talent through attractive benefits and talent management support.
- Has experience serving venture capital firms, private equity firms, and life sciences companies.
- Case studies show Aspen HR helped clients save over $150,000 and raised employee satisfaction rates.
- Provides tailored services to help startups focus on growth whilst managing HR effectively.
We set out on a mission to discover the very best PEO Services for startups and used a blend of research methodologies in order to do so. Ultimately, this meant we had to dive deep into the depths of each service, assessing their strategy and performance meticulously while looking at reviews, features, customer support times, and more.
We aim to be objective, focusing on facts to ensure each and every one of our reviews sheds light on the most promising PEO services that hold the power to potentially transform your startup. Let’s walk through our review methodology in greater detail.
In the PEO services industry, pricing is nearly always based on per-employee costs, either as a flat fee or a percentage. Unfortunately, this means it’s not as easy to get pricing information since it all comes on a “per-quote” basis.
To assess this in our review, we focused on the concept of value for money and dwelled not just on pricing but dug deeper. Our aim was to unearth the worthiness of each investment and explore how well their pricing aligns with the typical startup that might have a tighter budget.
For features, we targeted our research toward identifying essential traits like payroll administration, benefits administration, risk management, compliance, and training. Then, we investigated beyond these basics to determine which PEO services stand out with additional offerings that can help startups achieve their growth targets most efficiently.
The role of dynamic customer support cannot be understated when it comes to startup success. We prioritized investigating the level of customer support and assistance provided by each PEO service, evaluating elements such as response times, support channels, quality of guidance imparted, and overall customer satisfaction.
Lastly, we combed through user reviews, seeking real-world insights and experiences from past clients. We looked for stories from businesses that have actively used these PEO services to get a deeper understanding of what customers love and what they believe could be better.
What is a PEO?
A PEO, or professional employer organization, is a company that allows businesses to outsource their human resources functions. This means they handle tasks such as payroll, benefits administration, workers' compensation, and training, freeing up resources so that the partnering business can concentrate on its core operations.
What does a PEO do for a company?
A PEO takes on the responsibility of HR tasks for a company, providing services such as payroll processing, compensation and benefits administration, compliance support, and training. It allows the company to focus more on its primary business functions while still offering excellent HR services to its employees.
What is an example of a professional employer organization?
One example of a professional employer organization is ADP TotalSource. They provide comprehensive PEO services, including payroll, benefits administration, and compliance support. They also offer risk management support and HR management tools to partnered businesses.
Should startups use PEO?
Absolutely! Partnering with a PEO can be of great benefit to startups as it gives them access to benefits usually only available to larger companies. It can also save time and reduce expenses, making the company more competitive and efficient.
What are typical PEO fees?
PEO fees differ depending on the size of your business and the services that you use. Typically, fees are charged as a flat rate per employee or as a percentage of the company's total payroll. This usually includes access to HR services, benefits administration, payroll processing, and compliance support services.
How do I choose a PEO service?
Choosing a PEO service depends on several factors, including accreditation and auditing, compliance expertise, variety of benefits options, customer reviews and references, and industry experience. Businesses should also consider what specific needs they have that a PEO could meet.