ADP Review

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ADP is a top payroll service with options for any size business. While there are sleeker payroll competitors out there, ADP offers a much deeper suite of HR features with options for co-employment, human capital management, and on-demand HR support.

Who Needs ADP?

ADP is ideal for both small businesses and large operations. Multiple plan options cater to different needs and business sizes, from a basic plan for startups to a complete package that includes enhanced HR support. It’s specifically for companies that need comprehensive HR support or the option of outsourcing HR.

If you need to process unlimited payroll each month, ADP is probably not the best choice for doing so. The reason is that ADP has high service charges per payroll, so if you’re a company that needs to run it frequently, it’s going to add up quickly. Some payroll services charge a single fee for unlimited payroll runs each month, so keep that in mind.

The #1 Best Thing About ADP 

ADP offers a lot to its users but what stands out is the ability to quickly access pay stubs and 401k information without having to contact HR for help. ADP can store your historical payroll information from past jobs together with current job information. The quick online access to tax documents, including pay stubs and W2s, is noteworthy.

ADP Payroll

ADP offers a dedicated payroll platform. Below you’ll find the features and benefits of this service.

Features & Benefits

Although its ultimate strengths are on the HR side of things, ADP still has a lot to offer with its payroll service.

You’ll be able to automate your online payroll processing to avoid errors, and it offers an easy-to-use self-service app for employees.

Employees can access their payroll information and benefits on the go with a complete mobile app. Using the service, they can accomplish several tasks, including viewing their pay stubs, managing their time and attendance, and entering time-off requests when required.

ADP is particularly great at staying up to date with the many changing rules and regulations that can result in potential fines and penalties if companies aren’t careful.

The platform’s payroll services sync your payroll data with multiple solutions, including key areas such as time-tracking and employee benefits, which help to keep everything on track and manageable. All of the critical information is in one place, which helps to prevent costly errors.

On top of that, there are certified payroll professionals available 24/7, federal, state, and local compliance support, and payroll taxes are calculated and paid on your behalf.

The payroll features you have access to vary based on the different plans—this is something we’ll look at further below. Despite that, it’s fair to say companies that need to approve payroll while out and about will be well served here. These features are suitable for both small businesses and large operations.

We’re looking at a solid set of payroll tools overall, which are especially effective if you need mobile app functionality.


  • ADP provides its users with a mobile app that both employees and managers can access. This app is a must for approving payroll on the go, and not all services offer this capability.
  • The automated online payroll processing will help companies to avoid costly errors. There’s a keen focus on automation, which not all payroll services offer.


  • ADP frequently performs maintenance on its software, which can slow down the software during crucial payroll days.
  • The software can naturally lag when switching between different parts of it. The overall interface could be much snappier.

Pricing & Plans

ADP pricing and plans are somewhat complicated. In fact, that’s something that doesn’t change whether we’re talking about payroll, HR, or any other part of the service.

RUN Powered by ADP is available for businesses with 1-49 employees. There are four tiers of pricing available. You can go with the Essentials tier, which functions as a standalone payroll service, or upgrade plans for more features and deeper HR support.

ADP Workforce Now is available for businesses with with more than 50 employees. There are three tiers of pricing available. Entry level plans include full-service payroll and core HR functions. Upgraded plans include benefits administration, time tracking, and other workforce management features.

What doesn’t help here is that no prices are readily listed online. For every plan, you’ll have to contact ADP for a custom price, making it hard to see how it shapes up.

It’s clear ADP has a lot to offer, as the essential plan for 1-49 employees features tax filing, complete reports, direct deposits, and you can run payroll from anywhere, all from the starting plan.

That said, the pricing information could undoubtedly be more transparent for new users, and the add-ons only confuse things further.

The good news is that ADP has some generous special offers that help make up for this. For example, when you sign up for the small business payroll processing at the time of writing, you’ll get six months of service for free. This offer isn’t something you’ll easily find elsewhere.

ADP HR Services

ADP includes leading HR services. Below you’ll find the features and benefits.

Features & Benefits

ADP offers a complete range of HR tools, services, and self-service resources. Basic plans come with fewer tools, longer turnaround time on questions. Premium plans come with quicker turnaround times, access to support reps via multiple channels, and even on-demand HR support if you need it.

HR forms include handy checklists, job descriptions, policies, and more that will appeal to startups and established businesses.

Top features include an employee handbook wizard that allows you to create a personalized employee handbook. The handbook adheres to federal and state employment laws.

It’s also worth mentioning the job description wizard that seamlessly pulls from more than 300 job titles and descriptions to help shorten your hiring process. It’s features like these that prove ADP is serious about offering great HR solutions.

ADP offers complete outsourcing services and co-employment solutions (PEO services) for those who want to take HR tasks off their schedule. You’ll have access to a dedicated team of specialists who can work on some or all administrative duties as you desire.

ADP’s HR experts will help you recognize serious issues and use insights in compliance, talent strategy, change management, and communications. 

These services are ideal for companies that feel like they might be falling behind with their HR duties and need a bit of a boost from the specialists. It’ll also help you to make the most of data and to optimize your HR accordingly.


  • ADP provides complete HR support options from an employee handbook wizard to a helpdesk of professionals. It’s everything you need in terms of HR.
  • ADP can take on employee issues, hiring, compensation, and help struggling companies or those that don’t have the most up-to-date knowledge.


  • The best HR support features and the employee handbook wizard aren’t available on the first few plans. These features don’t appear until the third paid plan.
  • No prices are listed, and you will have to pay more to include full HR features with your payroll processing. Some payroll services on the market offer them both for a single flat fee. 

Pricing & Plans

ADP doesn’t publicly list any of its prices across the board, and the same is true for the HR side of things. You’ll find the same four plans for 1-49 employees (Run Powered by ADP) and another three for over 50 employees(ADP Workforce Now).

Companies with over 50 employees will have access to HR features from the second plan onwards, known as “HR Plus.” This plan going upwards includes enhanced HR tools such as secure and reportable HR recordkeeping, a custom report builder, guided new hire and termination workflows, and a global HR system of record.

The “HR Assist” add-on includes regulatory expertise and guidance, the employee handbook wizard, and job description templates. Although, admittedly, it is somewhat confusing to see this offered as an extra and not in the plans.

These plans are targeted at larger companies with more resources. While prices aren’t listed, it’s fair to say they will cost more overall.

That said, when you sign up for the small business payroll processing, you’ll get six months of service for free. If you’re a small business, this is an offer that’s hard to refuse.

ADP Talent Management

ADP helps with recruiting, onboarding, and more. Below you’ll find the features and benefits of this service.

Features & Benefits

ADP offers complete talent management as part of its services. Some businesses will find this to be an invaluable part of the package.

Whether you’re hiring full-time employees or contractors, ADP helps you create winning job posts and grab the attention of top talent.

The service can help you save time and fill gaps faster by automating recruiting and hiring tasks, such as updating job descriptions and posting jobs.

There’s even the ability to call in ADP recruiting experts for everything from hourly, professional or executive-level positions.

It’ll help you provide managers with greater visibility into team strengths, performance, and productivity while encouraging ongoing collaboration and coaching on the talent management side.

ADP also focuses on helping companies retain their workers due to the costly nature of losing great talent. It’ll help forecast flight risk, spot trends in turnover patterns, and evaluate team members’ strengths using analytics.

The talent management features are aimed at businesses of all sizes, with companies that need to improve their recruitment process or want to retain key team members the primary focus. That said, we think larger businesses will ultimately benefit the most from these features.


  • Recruiting, hiring, and onboarding are all covered, and ADP has the experts to back up the knowledge it provides to companies. It’s a complete service.
  • ADP’s exclusive DataCloud capability compares and predicts insights for its recommendations. It can accurately identify new hires for career opportunities.


  • The prices for some of the talent management features are unclear and mixed within existing plans.
  • The talent acquisition package is only available for companies with over 50 employees and on the two highest-paid plans.

Pricing & Plans

ADP doesn’t use prices for its talent management features. It’s difficult to say for sure what all of the management features cost and how they’re divided.

That said, companies with over 50 employees can find talent acquisition features appear on the higher plans, so we assume it’s not the cheapest service.

It’s worth thinking about your company’s size and performance management needs and then getting in touch with ADP for more information.

What Do Users Think of ADP?

Users enjoy the reporting features of ADP and are positive about how they can track hours and process payroll. Some users particularly like the HR outsourcing features and the extensive resources available to them. The HR features are usually praised.

Other users believe the customer service could be much better. They have found it to be slow and have not enjoyed waiting longer for responses. Some users have stated they’ve had to chase the company for problems to be fixed.

How ADP Measures Up To The Competition

Some of the top competitors ADP is up against are Gusto and Rippling. We thought both of these were excellent payroll services.

Gusto is probably a better play for startups and new businesses. It’s got a comparable set of features to Run Powered by ADP, which works for up to 50 employees. We’d definitely recommend looking at Gusto if your company is that size, especially if you are looking for onboarding, benefits administration, or paying 1099 workers in addition to W-2 workers.

If you have more than 50 employees, and you are thinking about using ADP Workforce Now, we suggest giving Rippling or Paycom are close look. You may find a better price, customer service, and suite of features for today’s businesses with either of those options.

ADP has been around forever and its definitely a big name in payroll. Like other big name products, it’s product has to meet the needs to a massive and diverse user-base.

Will ADP work? Of course, but we recommend a little due dilligence before signing up. We put together a complete buying guide so you can see the best options on the market as well as the precise scenarios in which you would need a payroll service.

Do We Recommend ADP?

Yes, but you should compare before you buy. ADP is great for both payroll and HR processes and is suitable for small businesses and other large operations. That said, you may be able to get everything you need from another service at a much lower price.

ADP’s HR services go further than what you’ll find from other payroll services. If that’s something you specifically need, and you don’t require unlimited payroll, ADP is a strong choice.

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