April 28, 2023Payroll

White-label payroll: Everything you need to know [guide]

In today’s difficult economic climate, vertical software as-a-service (vSaaS) and workforce platforms face a wicked problem: To survive, they need to figure out how to unlock new revenue streams while delivering stronger customer experiences. But at the same time, they also need to determine how to achieve these objectives without investing substantial time and resources.

To help software companies not only survive but even thrive in a challenging economy, Everee created a white-label payroll-as-a-service (PaaS) solution that businesses can use to launch payroll products in as fast as four weeks. By plugging Everee’s PaaS offering into their own products, companies can speed up the product development lifecycle, delivering additional value to customers quickly, all without breaking the bank.

To help you understand why you should consider incorporating payroll into your own solutions, we’ve put together this comprehensive guide that covers:

  • The benefits of adding payroll to software products
  • How to know whether your product is ready for a payroll offering
  • The benefits of white-labeling payroll instead of building it internally
  • How the white-labeling process works
  • The time and cost savings you can expect to experience by white-labeling
  • How to measure ROI after you’ve added payroll to your offerings
  • What to look for in a potential white-labeling partner

Why should software companies add payroll to their software?

In just the first few weeks of 2023, we’ve seen tens of thousands of layoffs impacting the technology sector as businesses scramble to cut costs ahead of what’s shaping up to be a lackluster year for many organizations. While cost-cutting can make it easier for companies to weather a challenging economic environment, reducing headcount by itself is not a panacea. 

Bringing new products to market can enable platforms to unlock new revenue streams while making their products stickier, which drives profitability, reduces churn, and increases the chances customers become evangelists.

By adding payroll to your platform, your company can upsell existing clients by offering an add-on product that makes life easier. You can also use payroll as a demand gen lever to differentiate your product from your competitors and attract new business. In an age where it’s not uncommon for organizations to rely on hundreds of applications, an all-in-one solution strengthens the client experience by reducing app sprawl and context switching. This, in turn, helps teams reclaim time and accomplish more. 

Add it all up, and a payroll product puts more money in your company’s pockets while making life easier for clients — a win-win.

How to determine whether your product is ready for a payroll offering

If your platform is already capturing worker or labor data related — like worker profiles, time and scheduling data or salary information — adding payroll as a new offering is a no-brainer. 

Of course, not every case is this cut and dry. To determine whether your product is ready for a payroll offering, here are some questions you need to ask:

  • Are our customers asking for payroll? You’re already listening to your customers. If more and more of them are clamoring for a payroll offering, chances are it’s a good fit with your product.
  • Do we have someone who can manage this product within your business? You can’t expect an overly burdened product manager to simply add payroll on top of their existing responsibilities. To maximize the potential of payroll, you need a dedicated individual who can focus exclusively on the new product.
  • Do we have the tech resources needed to build necessary integrations? Your engineering staff is busy, but you’ll still need some developers to either build payroll from scratch or integrate it into your applications. Assuming you don’t want to reinvent the wheel entirely, you should be able to plug the right PaaS solution into your apps with relatively little friction.
  • Do we have the resources to market and sell this product? Adding payroll to your application might be one of the best things your company’s ever done. But if you’re not going to market your new offering, how can you expect your customers to find out it exists? Before you incorporate payroll into your products, you need to ensure you have the budget and resources needed to market and sell it effectively. This is an area where the right partner can help by providing sales and marketing assets and templates.

What are the benefits of white-labeling payroll?

After you’ve decided that offering payroll is the right move, you then have to determine whether you’re going to build the product internally or plug another vendor’s solution into your applications. Unless you have endlessly deep pockets and extra development resources, you’re probably better off going with a white-label solution.

Bringing a new product to market faster

Building payroll — or any other software product — is hard. According to one report, it takes between four and nine months on average to complete a custom software project. In today’s turbulent economic climate, software companies simply don’t have that much time to spare. By integrating a white-label payroll solution into your products, you can roll out a new offering in as little as four weeks.

Bringing a new product to market cheaper

With the average software developer pulling in more than $120,000 a year, it’s no secret engineers are expensive. When businesses opt to build solutions internally, costs add up quickly — particularly when projects take nine months or even longer to wrap up. Adding payroll to your products through a plug-and-play solution helps you keep your costs in check during the product development lifecycle.

Delighting your customers 

By white-labeling your payroll offering, you can deliver more value to customers in less time, which makes life easier and improves their experience. When workers are forced to toggle between apps to do their jobs, they become stressed and frustrated, and their productivity diminishes. By integrating all the tools customers need in one place, employees can work efficiently and productively day in and day out, which puts them in a better mood and increases their output. 

Unlocking a new revenue stream faster

By bringing a new product to market faster, you can unlock a new revenue stream in less time while bolstering your margins. Keep in mind that, in addition to upselling existing clients, you can also use payroll as a fresh demand gen lever to win new business and raise awareness in the market.

How the white-labeling process works

If you’re new to white-label products, chances are you have a lot of questions about what to expect if you choose to adopt a PaaS solution. To assuage any concerns you might have, here’s a rundown of the basic experience you can anticipate.

1. A fully branded version of the app

Most white-label vendors will deliver a prebuilt application with your branding on it. In other words, your company’s logo appears on the app, pay stubs, and on any other documentation. You may also be able to customize a color palette and font too. As a result, your end customers won’t have any idea that another vendor is providing the payroll tools. To them, it’ll feel seamless.

2. SSO for a unified experience across tools

With the right white-label partner, customers who are already logged into your experience won’t have to log into the payroll platform. Leading solutions include support for single sign-on (SSO) authentication, so users only need one pair of credentials to access multiple tools. 

3. Permanent access to modern tech

Your energy is primarily focused on your core competencies — which, in most cases, involves building your own platform and adding new features to it regularly. By choosing to incorporate payroll to your product via white-labeling, you gain access to a team of developers that is laser-focused on building better and better payroll software. 

As a result, you get the peace of mind that comes with knowing you’ll always be able to offer your customers the latest and greatest in all things payroll as soon as your partner rolls it out, with no innovation required on your side. Instead of worrying about payroll or treating it like an afterthought, your engineers can spend more of their energy improving your core products.

4. The ability to customize the solution as you see fit

When you pick the right solution, you retain total control over which pieces of the partner’s app your solution integrates with via APIs or embeddable experiences. 

For example, in addition to a white-labeled payroll app, Everee also enables clients to embed new worker onboarding workflows into their own processes. This allows companies to capture all the appropriate payroll information — like tax information, direct deposit details, and contact details — automatically in a native experience. Of course, if you’re perfectly satisfied with your internal onboarding workflows, you can choose to keep those in place.

Bottom line? As you begin searching for a white-label PaaS provider, make sure they give you the ability to customize the solution to your exact specifications.

5. Access to support documentation and other materials

White-label partners are committed to your success because your success leads to theirs. To this end, leading vendors give clients access to robust libraries filled with support materials, including documentation, tutorials, troubleshooting guides and help articles. With those assets on hand, helping your own customers navigate your new payroll offering is a low lift that doesn’t require much on your end.

6. Access to sales and marketing materials

Similarly, leading white-label vendors also deliver sales and marketing materials, including asset templates, to help you drive demand and revenue for your new product. While your marketing and sales teams will likely have to tweak these assets for your own industry and organization, you won’t have to start from scratch.

7. Help on pricing and packaging

As is the case with any new offerings, figuring out the right pricing and packaging strategy is a tricky endeavor. Once again, the right white-label partner can help you navigate this challenge. In most cases, the vendor will offer per-worker or per-transaction pricing, and you can choose whichever makes the most sense for your business and your clients. After you’ve chosen an option, you can then work with the vendor to figure out how much to markup those fees for your own customers. 

8. Support from your partner if you need it

When it comes to any piece of technology, it’s only a matter of time before something breaks. In the event that happens with your white-label payroll product, you can reach out to the vendor for support. Again, the vendor succeeds only if you do, so they’re more than willing to help you make sure everything is working as it should be.

9. Partner bears the operational burden 

Believe it or not, the hardest part of payroll isn’t actually building it; it’s all the work that happens behind the scenes. The right white-label partner will handle all of the operational processes for you, things like labor compliance, payment processing, tax calculations and filings for state, federal and local agencies, and year-end tax document distribution. 

How much time and money can I save by white-labeling payroll?

Earlier in this guide, we mentioned that the average internal software project takes between 4-9 months to complete. Depending on how the process goes, who’s involved in the project, and what approach is taken, that timeline can extend much further — even as far as five years, in extreme cases.

When you choose to use a white-label payroll solution instead of building something from scratch, that timeline is accelerated considerably. With Everee’s white-labeled solution, for example, it’s possible to bring a new payroll product to market in mere weeks — not months or years.

In addition to saving lots of time, white-labeling will also save you a lot of money. For starters, you won’t need to hire new developers or operations professionals to help design, build and run a new payroll product. You also won’t have to pull talent off of mission-critical projects and put those at risk. Additionally, the right white-label partner will be able to handle all compliance processes, making your journey to a new payroll product that much easier.

While you’ll save money on headcount by taking the white-label approach, you’ll also be unlocking a new revenue stream. With the right pricing and packaging strategy, those cost savings will compound as more and more revenue flows into the company.

White-labeling payroll: How to measure ROI

Every smart business does its due diligence to make sure any investments they make deliver actual results. So, before you begin the processing of integrating a white-label payroll solution into your applications, you’ll want to gauge the potential value you’ll get from that investment.

To do that, look at how many customers you have today and try to figure out, realistically, how many of them might opt to add your new payroll product to their experience. Once you have that number, determine how much money you’re going to charge each customer for payroll and crunch the numbers. If, for example, a white-label vendor charges $3/worker/month, and you’re charging your clients $9/worker/month, that’s a 300% ROI.

If the math makes sense to you and you decide to move forward with a white-label payroll offering, you need to analyze metrics moving forward to get an idea of how the product has been received. At this point, you should analyze metrics — like signups, revenue, and customer retention — and track them over time. Using that data, you should then ask yourself several questions:

  • How do the retention rates compare among customers who use payroll and those who don’t? 
  • What is the average contract value of customers who use payroll versus those that don’t?
  • What is the lifetime value of customers who use payroll versus those that don’t?
  • How many customers did we convert because of payroll?
  • What other payroll-specific pipeline metrics are most important to us (e.g., how much money is in the sales pipeline and the number of sales accepted opportunities in the pipeline)? 

Assuming your product is ready for payroll and you choose the right white-label partner, there’s a high likelihood you’ll get the business outcomes you’re hoping for.

How to choose a white-label payroll partner

At the end of the day, your new payroll offering will only be as strong as the vendor you choose to partner with. As you begin searching for a white-label PaaS provider, you need to know what to look for when evaluating vendors. With that in mind, let’s examine some of the must-have features the ideal partner will deliver:

  • A modern user interface (UI). Most white-label payroll solutions are outdated with old and clunky UIs that are hard to navigate. To deliver a strong experience to your clients, it’s critical to find a partner who offers a white-label payroll offering that features a modern UI with a consumer-app feel. 
  • APIs and documentation. As you search for a white-label partner, make sure they have well-documented, flexible, and modern APIs that enable developers to easily integrate the PaaS solution into their own applications.
  • Embeddable experiences. To combat app sprawl and context switching, the ideal white-label PaaS solution will offer embeddable experiences. For example, you should be able to integrate things like worker onboarding workflows into your app to deliver a truly seamless UI.
  • Faster pay cycles. In addition to outdated design, many white-label payroll products are only capable of supporting old-school, two-week payment cycles. If you’re looking to truly differentiate your product, consider looking for a white-label partner offering faster pay cycles. Everee, for example, lets companies pay their workers immediately at the end of their shifts, with options for daily and weekly pay, too.
  • Operational support. As you narrow down your options, you need to determine whether the vendor you’re considering offers operational support or whether you’re on the hook for those responsibilities. Unless you’re keen on handling operations yourself, look for a partner that takes care of all backend work, including processing payments with a banking partner; tax calculations, filings, and remittance; tax document delivery; and TIN verification.
  • Customer support. Sooner or later, companies run into problems with virtually every piece of technology they use. Such is life. While you can’t avoid technological mishaps, you can mitigate those hiccups by joining forces with the right white-label partner. Look for a vendor that will be available to quickly assist with any issues your company runs into when using their PaaS solutions.
  • Technical integration and implementation support. It’s not uncommon for engineering teams to need technical integration and implementation support, particularly when there are other pressing priorities on their plates. If you anticipate your team might need help with integration and implementation support, it’s important to look for a vendor that offer technical support services, including project design planning, ongoing meetings, and implementation advice.

If you’re looking to quickly and affordably add payroll to your vertical SaaS or workforce platform solution, Everee can help. 

We designed our white-label payroll offering specifically to help businesses like yours unlock new revenue streams fast while delighting your existing customers and attracting new ones.

To learn more about Everee’s white-label payroll solution and how you can use it to differentiate your app from the competition and win more business, check this out.