Before the pandemic, New York’s commuter trains ferried one million passengers to work every weekday. Now, many cars run empty. In San Francisco’s once raucous startup district, 1 in 5 offices sit vacant. All across the country, work is not what it was. That’s true for Gusto, and it’s even true for me. 

I’ve been at Gusto for over three years and have gone from commuting five days per week to our Denver office to working remotely from my family home in Vermont. 

For all these reasons, we’re enthusiastically updating our people platform to help employers and their accountants meet that change. We’re also tearing down some unnecessary silos between payroll and HR. It should all just be about supporting people.

To announce these updates, Gusto will be publishing a monthly newsletter that goes out to all partners. We’ll also host a quarterly webinar, called The Quarterly Scoop packed full of product updates and insight from community leaders. This quarter, we hosted our event with Ryan Lazanis, Founder of Future Firm. You can watch it here: Powerful HR Tools for the Changing World of Work.  

In this article, I’ll share three major trends in payroll and HR, and how we’ve responded with new and existing features. 

Companies are hiring more out-of-state employees

With every out-of-state employee comes an additional regulatory burden—in most cases, you must register as a foreign entity in that state, and then pay state and local taxes. 

Take Cortex Health, for example. They grew from 14 to 500 employees during the pandemic, spread across 44 states. Simply staying abreast of those requirements would have necessitated a team, and could have slowed hiring, and time to first paycheck. But as a Gusto customer, they’re able to use our partnership with CorpNet to register in a new state if they add an employee with a work address there.

Gusto feature: ​Tax registration in all 50 states​—We’ve partnered with CorpNet to handle the paperwork with state and local agencies so you and your clients can start paying employees quickly and you can focus on other important tasks. 

Gusto feature: Pay international contractors in 90+ countries—Talent knows no borders and now, Gusto has expanded your reach. See a full list of countries.

HR tech has tended to create more work, not less

Forty-eight percent of chief human officers think their current HR technologies hinder, rather than improve, the employee experience. And while those surveyed are very likely at larger companies, that’s the future most growing businesses (read: your clients) can look forward to. 

One of the top challenges? There’s too much technology to choose from, and all those platforms fragment what is fundamentally one employee journey, from hiring to retiring. 

Gusto feature: Performance reviews and integrations—Gusto admins can set up reviews, track progress, capture feedback, and facilitate meaningful conversations all within Gusto, where all your other payroll and people data already lives. 

This includes:

  • Annual reviews
  • Self-evaluations
  • Manager evaluations
  • Custom questions and review cycles 

In a candidate’s market, fast-moving employers win

While it’s difficult to say what precisely constitutes a “candidate’s market,” many employers feel it intuitively, and some data suggests that the shift in negotiating power is substantial. Compensation is increasing and there are more job openings than there are unemployed people seeking work, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics. 

If you or your clients have a top candidate, and you want to extend an offer, you can’t be shuffling around in HR software systems to generate that paperwork. If the candidate has multiple offers, you may lose them.

Gusto feature: Gusto Recruiting—Create and manage job postings directly from Gusto. You can also collect responses from the interview team, and when you’re ready, send a customized offer letter. Once they accept, you can, of course, add new hires to payroll. (Note: This is only available in Gusto Complete, Concierge, and Select plans.)

Let’s make HR agile

There are more trends, and these are just a fraction of the list of our recent product updates. To learn more, join The Quarterly Scoop and watch the latest webinar with Ryan Lazanis, Founder of Future Firm, where we explain: 

  • Expenses – bulk actions
  • Electronic consent for W-2/1099s
  • Multiple bank accounts
  • Broker integration
  • New plan: Select
  • Tax exemptions
  • Integrations: More 401(k) providers, Sage Business Cloud Accounting, and Sage Intacct
Annie Arthur Annie leads world-class training programs with a goal of empowering accountants and bookkeepers to expand their expertise, uplevel their skills, and grow their business.
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