Celebrating 20 Years in Business • 2004 - 2024

Payroll Errors and Challenges

Before establishing an official payroll process for your company, it’s important to think about how you want payroll to work. As you ponder your options and think about the way you want to run payroll, make sure you prioritize the following details. Otherwise, you might find yourself face-to-face with payroll-related errors and unnecessary challenges.

The do’s of payroll:

  • Start by establishing folders for each employee. These can be physical folders or digital ones, but either way, you will want to gather documentation from each employee. Ask your employees to fill out a contract that offers them employment, states the agreed-upon wages and includes information regarding incentives or bonus programs.
  • Decide on a payment schedule for your employees. The most common payment structure is biweekly, with payments released on the 14th and 30th or 31st day of each month. However, this is not the only option, so consider what will work best for your company. Also, think about whether you will offer salaried positions. Likewise, establish a payment schedule for any freelancers or contractors who work for you.
  • Figure out how you will monitor time and calculate pay. How will you track your employees and the work that they do? Think of it like old-school timecards but a modern version. Ponder how you will ensure that your employees are working during their scheduled hours. There are many applications you can use to track time, and the same is true for calculating gross pay. The two go hand in hand, so make sure you can integrate time trackers and payment calculators.
  • Identify how to apply payroll deductions to your employees’ paychecks. There are many deductions you should consider. Examples of deductions that must be applied when relevant include Social Security, unemployment, income tax, 401(k) contributions and wage garnishments. Payroll software can help you ensure that proper deductions are in place for each worker.
  • Determine how you will pay employees. Once you have figured out how much each employee or worker is owed per pay period, you can select a method of paying those who work for you. Whether you choose to offer direct deposits or physical checks, make sure you clearly explain how people can expect to receive their paychecks each period.
  • Be diligent about notifying the right third parties. After you pay your workers every pay period, you’ll need to report the transactions to the federal government. Look into the IRS Electronic Federal Tax Payment System to streamline the reporting process for you as an employer. Similarly, determine whether it covers workers’ compensation, 401(k) contributions, or vacation and sick time. Knowing whether you must submit payments biweekly, quarterly or annually will make this step of the process a lot easier for you.

The don’ts of payroll

By upholding the do’s of payroll, you can minimize the odds of running into the following challenges of payroll:

  • Making errors caused by manual payroll procedures.
  • Being in the dark about employment laws or regulations and changes made to them.
  • Having a poor history of maintaining records of payroll.
  • Failing to uphold the privacy or confidentiality of workers.
  • Underpaying or overpaying those who work for you.
  • Accidentally misclassifying employees, contractors or freelancers.
  • Finding your business in a position where it is not tax-compliant.
  • Having issues with managing or reporting data.

Payroll is not the most favorite part of business. It can be time-consuming and taxing, no pun intended. As an employer, you have to ensure that you are withholding the proper percentage of each employee’s paycheck so they can pay both federal and state taxes. As if that’s not enough, local taxes as well as unemployment and FICA, or Federal Insurance Contributions Act, taxes must be considered.

In addition to determining how much to withhold from each employee’s paycheck, you must also make all of your tax payments on time, but “on time” is subjective based on the type of tax you are withholding. That’s because the tax payment intervals vary. For instance, federal income tax and FICA taxes are due on a monthly or a semiweekly basis. On the other hand, federal unemployment tax is due quarterly.

Know the classification rules of people who work for you

According to the United States Department of Labor and the Fair Labor Standards Act, there are rules that you must adhere to for minimum wage, overtime pay and the minimum age of those who work for you. Therefore, you will need to monitor your payroll processes to ensure that the age and the pay rate of your employees are in compliance with relevant laws.

Also, keep in mind that tax laws change from time to time, so try not to get into the habit of assuming that your automated payroll system is avoiding issues on its own. While automated processes are helpful, a certain degree of human intervention is key to avoiding misclassifications.

For instance, when establishing or running payroll, it is imperative that you be vigilant about properly classifying your employees. As an example, mistakes like classifying a nonexempt worker as exempt or vice versa can result in major ramifications for payroll. Exempt workers are not entitled to overtime pay, but if you misclassify an exempt worker as a nonexempt worker, that person might receive overtime pay by accident, resulting in a number of issues.

However, if you discover misclassifications of workers when running a payroll audit, it’s not the end of the world. You can right the wrongs that have been made. To fix the situation, reach out to an employment lawyer who can help you reclassify employees and make sure your payroll processes are compliant with tax laws.

Ultimately, payroll can be difficult, but it doesn’t have to be, especially when you adhere to tax laws. Auditing your payroll processes is also important because audits ensure that your payroll process is running smoothly over time.

If your company makes errors, seek to resolve them quickly, whether that’s on your own or with the help of an attorney. And remember, payroll challenges can be mitigated if not avoided altogether when you take the right measures.


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Emily Gooding

Payroll Specialist

Emily is graduating in May with a BA in Business Administration from Lander University. She has gained valuable experience as a payroll intern for BMW. We are so excited to have her on the team and  to see her excel in her role as a Payroll Specialist.

Madison Capps​

Payroll Specialist

Madison received a BS in Psychology from Southern Illinois University in 2019. Since then, she has been working as a supervisor at Starbucks and earning her second degree, a BA in Administration and Accounting, from USC Aiken in the fall. She will be joining us as a Payroll Specialist and a valuable addition to our Paysmart team.

Kristen Wilby

Payroll Specialist

Before moving to South Carolina with her husband, Kristen worked as a Sales & Marketing Specialist for Premium King in Feasterville, PA, where she gained valuable experience in strengthening the brand and generating new business. Kristen also brings to our team several years of professional experience as an Executive Assistant and as an Office Manager, where she was first introduced to payroll. Kristen’s knowledge and her innate ability to establish genuine relationships contribute greatly to the team as we continue to grow and serve our clients.

Meg Whitaker

Payroll Specialist

Meg brings nearly twenty years of professional experience to the team. Most recently, she worked as a Payroll & Benefits Specialist in Centennial, Colorado. She and her husband recently moved back to the Carolinas for his job, and we were fortunate to find her! Before Colorado, Meg worked at CPI Security Systems in Charlotte, NC, for twelve years as a Billing Coordinator and Senior Administrative Assistant. She also gained three years of experience as an HR Assistant for a law firm in Fayetteville, NC. Her expertise significantly adds to our team and benefits our clients as we continue to grow!

Rachel McClaran, EA


Rachel plays a crucial role in developing Paysmart’s core processes and procedures, as well as overall strategy within the company. Rachel graduated from Bob Jones University and is an active member of the Junior League of Greenville and the South Carolina Association of CPAs. Her desire to serve her community has led her to become involved with several nonprofit organizations and to serve as the past Vice President of Finance for the Junior League of Greenville. Outside of the office,Rachel enjoys spending time on the water and traveling with her husband and their two children.

Hina Rogers

Payroll Specialist

Hina joined the Paysmart team in August 2022. She grew up in Portland, Oregon, before moving to Greenville, SC. She earned both a bachelor’s and a master’s degree in education. After college, she represented her alma mater as an enrollment counselor in the Southeast and Western states. She enjoys traveling, road trips, cooking, and quality time with her family. Hina looks forward to serving your company’s needs! 

Sharon Quantrille

Payroll Specialist

Sharon has spent several years in the accounting industry and has completed courses to hone her skills as a Payroll Specialist. Her background as an educator, professional musician, and Human Resources Generalist has contributed to her communication skills, commitment to professionalism, and organizational skills that make her a tremendous benefit to her Paysmart clients and colleagues. A graduate of Bob Jones University with a B.S. degree in Music Education, a Master of Music degree in Piano Performance and a Human Resources Generalist Certificate, Sharon spends her free time gardening, hiking, playing the piano, and spending time with her four adult children.

Haleigh Bates

Payroll Specialist

Haleigh joined our team in May of 2022 as a payroll specialist. Haleigh has over eight years of experience helping personal and small business clients with their financial needs. She received her Bachelor’s Degree from Georgia Southern University. She enjoys spending time with her husband and their three children, Caden, Addie, and Mason.  She likes to go hiking, spend time at the beach, and volunteer at her church in the children’s ministry. 

Courtney Rossello

Payroll Tax Manager

Courtney joined the team at Paysmart Payroll Services in September 2020.  She was raised in Simpsonville, SC, and graduated from Clemson University in 2009 with a bachelor’s degree in political science and a concentration in public administration.  Courtney began her payroll career in 2011 and currently works in the payroll tax department at Paysmart.  She strives to make every client feel comfortable knowing their payroll taxes and tax returns are handled accurately and efficiently.  Courtney is also a volunteer Treasurer for a local middle school in Greenville County.  In her spare time, she enjoys volunteering with special needs children, road trips, and spending time with her two daughters. 

Emily Hargrave

Senior Payroll Specialist

Emily received her bachelor’s degree in music from West Coast Baptist College. Since her college days, Emily has gained nearly 18 years of experience in office operations and project management. Emily joined Paysmart in 2017 and enjoys using her skills to support clients and the Paysmart team.

 At heart, Emily is a small-town country girl from the Midwest but is happy now to call the Upstate home, where she doesn’t have to endure harsh winters. Emily’s favorite ways to spend her free time are reading a good book, challenging herself with puzzles, and doing her best not to kill the plants in her garden.

Julie Shull

Client Success Specialist

Julie is the Client Success Specialist for Paysmart Payroll.  She joined the team as a Payroll Specialist in March of 2020. She received her Bachelor of Science degree from NC State University and earned an MBA from Gardner-Webb University while playing on the GWU women’s tennis team. After starting her career with Wilson Sporting Goods as a Financial Analyst, she took a few years off to raise twin boys until she began working for Greenville County Schools in 2014.  Julie enjoys spending time with her family and outdoor activities.

Brad Detandt

Payroll Administrator

A graduate of Northland International University with a BA in Counseling, Brad Detandt leads the day-to-day operations of the Paysmart team. He is eager to grow the firm’s client portfolio. He brings a diverse employment background in retail, manufacturing, nonprofit ministries, and business development, with
a specialized focus on team development and process improvement. Brad’s professional – and personal – mission is to “Be Great. Serve!” Brad enjoys spontaneous activities and weekend trips to state parks with his wife Miranda and his three children.

Stephen C. Stokes

Managing Partner

Stephen has more than 14 years’ experience working with individuals and businesses to meet their tax, accounting, and payroll needs. He has been the managing partner of Paysmart Payroll Services since January 2009. He is a licensed certified public accountant in South Carolina and Georgia. Stephen is also a member of the South Carolina Association of CPAs, the Georgia Society of CPAs, the American Institute of CPAs, and the Professional Association of Small Business Accountants. He has a bachelor’s degree from Bob Jones University and a master’s degree from Georgia State University. Stephen was born and raised near Atlanta, Georgia and moved to Greenville, South Carolina, several years ago. He enjoys spending time with his wife, Tiffani, and daughters, Madeline and Julianna. He is actively involved in his church and enjoys reading, sports, and other outdoor activities.