Justworks has become a popular choice for companies looking to modernize their payroll, HR and compliance operations. Compared to other top professional employee organizations vendors like Gusto, Rippling, Paychex and Papaya Global, Justworks is a robust and powerful tool that differentiates itself with its ease of use and abundant features.
Decision makers looking for technology that can run automated payroll, alleviate the costs and burdens of manual tasks with automation, manage employees’ entire lifecycle and meet compliance in the U.S. should consider Justworks.
SEE: Choosing a payroll service: A guide for business leaders (TechRepublic Premium)
It’s important to highlight that while the platform offers support for international employees, its strengths are for U.S. operations, especially considering the complexities of international tax and compliance. While Justworks is a great platform for small businesses, it can be expensive for enterprises with large workforces.
Justworks fast facts table
Vendors and contractors
Time and attendance
National and international workers
Business metrics tracking
Paid Time Off
|U.S. state taxes in 50 states
Employment practices liability insurance
Health advocacy services
On-demand primary care services
Justworks offers two plans; Basic and Plus. The Basic plan costs $59 per month per employee and $49 per month for your 50th employee onwards. The basic plan includes a comprehensive suite of features and tools, from payroll to off-cycle payments, vendor and contractor payments, tax filing, W-2 and 1099 filings, 24/7 support, HR tools and a mobile app for workers. The plan also gives companies access to workers’ compliance, life and disability insurance, health and wellness benefits, and 401(k)s.
The Plus plan costs $99 per month per employee and $89 per month for your 50th employee onwards. This plan includes all the basic plan features and adds access to medical, dental, vision, HSA/FSA accounts, COBRA administration and One Medical (where available). Justworks does not offer free trials.
Justworks key features
Justworks provides all its features under a centralized PEO cloud platform for companies to handle benefits, payroll, HR and compliance all in one place. Its tools fall within six feature categories: Payroll services, Compliance, Justworks Hours, Employee Benefits, HR Tools and Customer support. Let’s dive into each one of them.
Justworks offers easy-to-use payroll features. Compared to other platforms like Paychex, the simplicity of Justworks’ payroll user interface can benefit companies that employ diverse teams, as their tools require no advanced technical knowledge.
Despite the seamless characteristics of the tools, Justworks can automate pay runs, schedule payments and present data-driven visualizations and notifications. Its main strength is for U.S. employees, whether remote, hybrid, full-time or part-time. The platform works efficiently in all 50 U.S. states, from deposits to tax filing and compliance. Justworks’ payroll and compliance for international workers is limited. Papaya Global is a good option for companies that operate strictly abroad.
Justworks’ payroll features include time and attendance, automated filing of W-2s and 1099s, payroll reports, support for employees, contractors and vendors in the U.S., commissions, bonuses, geo-stamped time-keeping, shift scheduling and integrations with Xero and QuickBooks.
Modern compliance management technologies have become essential for companies in the ever-evolving regulatory landscape. Justworks ensures companies meet state tax, federal tax, workers compliance and more. The platform also offers training for workers and mandatory courses to avoid and mitigate compliance risks.
All compliance features of the company are centered around U.S. employment-related needs. Justworks offers a wide range of online training powered by EVERFI. These courses are available for any company using the platform. Courses are designed to help organizations comply with requirements such as harassment prevention training.
The platform also offers compliance support for workers’ compensation, unemployment insurance filings, ACA Filings (1094-C and 1095-C), time-sheet errors, time tracking, project tracking, payroll and invoice reports, and more.
As mentioned previously, this platform is mainly oriented toward meeting federal compliance. International compliance, regulations and taxes can be complex and may require other platforms.
Companies looking for a simple but effective way to manage hours, schedules and everything time-tracking-related can benefit from Justworks Hours feature. While most PEO vendors today offer time-tracking, some only enable this technology through third-party integration. Therefore, having complete control of time management built into Justworks is a plus.
With Justworks Hours, companies can:
- Provide mobile time-tracking and management apps.
- Automate reminders and alerts.
- Provide efficiency despite workers’ location.
- Integrate and sync time-tracking data with payroll and compliance.
- Manage shifts.
- Set custom overtime and break rules.
- Onboard employees with a mobile app.
- Create a centralized punch-in clock for everyone.
- Customize employee clock-in methods, and meal and rest break reminders.
- Track time for contractors and hourly employees.
- Limit errors and inaccuracies.
- Improve visibility to understand where time is being spent.
- Offer employee clock-in and clock-out locations with built-in GPS tracking.
Employee benefits have become essential to attracting and retaining talent. Companies are not just seeking to add perks to stay competitive, but want to manage these bonuses seamlessly.
Additionally, because Justworks negotiates directly with large providers, they can give small companies access to benefits only big companies usually get. These include large group market offers from Aetna, MetLife, CitibiBike, One Medical, Health Advocate and Talks Space.
The platform also goes beyond traditional health benefits and offers wellness services built into health insurance coverage at no cost. Teams can enroll, view and manage their coverage through the mobile app or website. Wellness benefits include services for mental health, primary care and care navigation.
The platform offers life insurance, 401(k), HSAs, commuter benefits and more. Dental and vision are only available for the Plus plan.
Like most PEO vendors, Justworks offers powerful HR tools. The main difference? They are fully automated, provide excellent visualization and are comprehensive and easy to use.
From onboarding to termination, HR teams can manage the entire employee lifecycle from the centralized dashboard. Additionally, employees can receive notifications, fill out forms, schedule paid time off and sign reports digitally through mobile or web channels.
HR tools also include organization charts, features to set permissions, third-party integration capabilities, automated hiring and onboarding, benefits and more. HR departments can also safely manage all documents, handbooks, contracts and other electronic documents and store them securely in the platform. They can also set holidays and events, upload policies and track key business metrics.
Only some payroll, HR and compliance platforms offer 24/7 support. If your company wants responsive help, even operating beyond regular business hours, Justworks can provide it.
The support channels Justworks provides include email, phone calls, chat, Slack and SMS. More importantly, the support they provide is not only focused on any problem the company’s HR, finance, compliance, legal or accounting teams may face. The platform offers benefits, payroll, HR and onboarding support to employees as well.
- Holistic payroll, HR and compliance platform.
- Powerful automation and easy user experience.
- Comprehensive suite of features and tools.
- Resources for modern work experience.
- Full compliance management.
- Excellent visualization to power data-driven companies.
- 24/7 support.
- Can be expensive for large workforces as rates are per employee.
- Managing the most advanced features may require technical knowledge.
- Some features are not included in the Basic plan.
If Justworks isn’t ideal for you, there are several alternatives you can check out.
Papaya Global may be a better fit for companies with international workforces.
For accountants and bookkeepers, OnPay offers more technical integrations and technologies.
Companies looking for similar features as those offered by Justworks, but due to the size of their workforce require more budget-friendly platforms, also have other options.
Gusto is a modern, robust, simple-to-use platform with a price that starts at $40 per month plus $6 per month per employee.
Rippling, a similar PEO, has no monthly fee and only costs $8 per month per employee.
This review is based on my experience with software and reporting on HR, payroll and IT technologies. Additionally, it includes information and user reviews from aggregated review sources.