If you’re involved with payroll, it’s imperative that you learn the following:
- Your tax account numbers. This includes your Federal EIN, state withholding and unemployment accounts, as well as local income and school district taxes.
- The applicable tax rates for your business. This could something like a starting unemployment rate for your organization.
- Calculating a paycheck and subtracting tax withholdings.
- Calculating a federal payroll tax deposits, such as federal income tax and FICA.
- Know federal tax deposits. Your business could begin as a monthly depositors, but the IRS may revise that schedule.
- Know how to make federal tax deposits through systems like EFTPS.
- Know how to complete all federal and state tax filings.
It would also be useful to learn:
- Minimum wage and overtime laws in your state.
- Any IRS recordkeeping requirements.
- How to handle deductions like health insurance.
- How to handle wage garnishes, such as child support.
Where you can you learn these skills and regulations? Here some of the best ways where you can learn payroll whether you’re a small business owner, accountant, or someone wanting to get involved in the field.
Courses For Credit
If you want learn the basics of payroll, you don’t necessarily need a college degree. In fact, you may only need a high school diploma and can be hired to learn most of the payroll skills on the job. However, it is beneficial to have some additional payroll courses under your belt. Many community colleges and vocational training schools offer payroll accounting clerk certificate programs.
You can also earn a payroll certification, such as the Fundamental Payroll Certification (FPC) and the Certified Payroll Professional (CPP) online from the American Payroll Association or the National Association of Certified Bookkeepers.
If you want to become a payroll manager or supervisor, you’ll most likely need a bachelor’s degree in accounting. If you’re interested in attending a educational institution to earn an accounting degree, here are eighteen of the leading colleges and universities:
- Bentley University; Waltham, MA
- University of Texas – Austin
- University of Notre Dame
- University of Illinois – Urbana-Champaign
- Bryant University; Smithfield, RI
- Brigham Young University – Provo
- University of Pennsylvania
- University of Southern California
- Indiana University – Bloomington
- Boston College
- University of Michigan – Ann Arbor
- CUNY Bernard M. Baruch College; New York, NY
- New York University
- Villanova University; Villanova, PA
- University of Florida
- SUNY Binghamton; Vestal, NY
- University of Washington
- Michigan State University
There are also plenty of online courses, which are usually free, that are available. While they will help you understand payroll basics, you will not earn any credit for taking these courses, which may not be ideal for someone looking for a career in payroll. These courses may be more useful for business owners who are looking to do payroll themselves.
- Payroll Accounting – Accounting Coach; Waltham, MA
- Bean Accounting 101 – Arnold S. Grundvig, Jr.
- Accounting 101 – Kutztown University
- Financial Accounting at Massachusetts Institute of Technology
- Management Accounting by New Jersey Institute of Technology
- Payroll Practice and Management – ed2go
- SAP Payroll – Udemy
Additional Ways to Learn Payroll
If you don’t have to time to attend an accounting course or learning the basics of payroll online, you can also consider using the following resources for learning payroll
- Talk to a CPA. If you have an accountant, or have an accountant in your network who would be willing to help you learn the basics of the payroll skill, you can discuss these payroll basics with them.
- Find a Mentor. Ask questions from business owners who have had experience with payroll. They may be able to guide you where to start or continue your education in the payroll area.
- Resources From Accounting Software Provider. The accounting or bookkeeping software that you use for your business should have a blog or guides that can assist you with payroll.
- Resources From Your State and IRS. Both state and federal agencies provide resources to business owners regarding payroll. You can find this information by visiting RS.gov and USA.gov.