Payroll Director

Last Updated:
June 29, 2023

Job Description Overview

As a Payroll Director, your responsibilities will include overseeing the payroll department, ensuring accuracy and timeliness of payroll processing, and compliance with federal, state, and local regulations. You will work closely with HR and other departments to coordinate payroll data and resolve any issues. Your role will also include managing and developing payroll staff, creating and maintaining procedures and policies, and implementing new payroll systems or software as needed. Your knowledge of accounting, finance, and tax laws will be essential to provide guidance and support to the organization. With the technology constantly evolving, you will need to stay up-to-date on new developments and industry trends to ensure that the company is utilizing the most efficient and effective practices. If you have excellent leadership skills, attention to detail, and a passion for payroll processing, then the Payroll Director job description is the perfect fit for you.

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Job Duties and Responsibilities

  • Oversee the administration of payroll to ensure timely and accurate processing of employee paychecks.
  • Monitor and review employee time and attendance data for completeness and accuracy.
  • Keep up-to-date and ensure compliance with all federal, state, and local payroll laws and regulations.
  • Maintain accurate payroll records and keep them confidential.
  • Manage payroll staff and delegate responsibilities as needed.
  • Communicate with executives and other departments on payroll-related matters.
  • Handle issues related to employee benefits, garnishments, and deductions.
  • Develop and implement payroll policies and procedures.
  • Prepare payroll reports and analytics for management and auditors.
  • Monitor and forecast payroll expenses and manage payroll budgets.

Experience and Education Requirements

To become a Payroll Director in the Human Resources industry, you need a mix of education and experience. Most companies will expect you to have a Bachelor's degree in accounting or finance, business administration or related fields. Beyond that, you should have a minimum of 5-7 years of experience in payroll, with exposure to multi-state payroll, benefits management and compliance, HRIS systems management and tax laws. Experience in managing a team is also a plus. Strong communication, analytical and organizational skills are essential. Attaining relevant payroll certifications such as Certified Payroll Professional (CPP) from the American Payroll Association (APA) may also boost your chances of landing the job.

Salary Range

As a Payroll Director in the Human Resources industry, you can expect to earn an average salary of $110,000 to $149,000 per year in the United States. However, this salary range could vary based on different factors such as education, experience, location, and company size. Some larger corporations may pay higher salaries. 

For example, a Payroll Director with extensive experience in New York City can earn an average salary of $144,974, while the average salary for the same position in Austin, Texas is $115,060. 

Outside of the United States, a Payroll Director in Canada can expect to earn between CAD $95,000 to $145,000 per year, and in the United Kingdom, the salary range is £60,000 to £90,000 per year. 

It is also worth noting that a candidate with relevant certifications such as Certified Payroll Professional (CPP) or Fundamental Payroll Certification (FPC) could earn higher salaries. Overall, Payroll Director salary range is a very competitive and attractive one. 


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Career Outlook

If you're interested in becoming a Payroll Director, the outlook for the next 5 years looks promising! According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, jobs in the Human Resources industry are projected to grow by 7% from 2019-2029. Additionally, Payscale reports that the average salary for a Payroll Director is $96,000 per year. This is higher than the average salary for Human Resource Managers in general, which is around $84,000 per year. With more companies focusing on employee satisfaction and retention, the role of the Payroll Director continues to be important in ensuring accurate and timely payroll processing. So if you're interested in a career in Human Resources, becoming a Payroll Director could be a great option for your future!

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)

Q: What does a Payroll Director do?

A: A Payroll Director oversees the process of paying employees accurately and on time. They ensure compliance with regulations, develop and implement payroll processes, and manage a team of payroll professionals.

Q: What qualifications are required to become a Payroll Director?

A: A bachelor's degree in accounting, finance or business administration is typically required. Experience with payroll processing, tax laws, and human resources is also a must, along with strong leadership skills.

Q: What are the common responsibilities of a Payroll Director?

A: A Payroll Director is responsible for administering payroll policies and procedures, reconciling payroll accounts, maintaining accurate employee records, forecasting payroll budgets, and ensuring timely payments to all employees.

Q: What are the working conditions like for a Payroll Director?

A: Payroll Directors typically work in an office environment, but they may need to collaborate with other departments to resolve payroll-related issues. They often have tight deadlines and must be able to work under pressure.

Q: What are the career prospects for a Payroll Director?

A: Career prospects for a Payroll Director can be very positive, as it is a critical position in any organization. Payroll Directors may eventually move on to roles such as HR Director, CFO, or other high-level management positions.

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