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Oasis, a Paychex Company, is a professional employer organization, or PEO, that can bundle payroll, human resources, employee benefits and compliance services into one package. Unlike some payroll software products, Oasis matches business owners with a dedicated team of HR and payroll specialists. It also offers benefits packages that are on par with Fortune 500 companies and otherwise not accessible to small businesses. Benefits aside, Oasis is a good alternative to hiring permanent HR staff.
While Oasis can help some small-business owners save a significant amount of time, it’s likely excessive for owners who manage fewer than 10 employees, have minimal administrative tasks and aren’t interested in offering elevated benefits packages.
What is a professional employer organization, or PEO?
When a small business hires a PEO to assist with HR and payroll, the PEO becomes the co-employer and employer of record of that business’s employees. As the employer of record, the PEO assumes responsibility for keeping the small business legally compliant, taking some pressure off of the owner. And because it co-employs people from multiple businesses, the PEO can pool those employees together and offer large-business-scale benefits at reasonable rates.
The small-business owner’s position as the employer doesn’t change with this arrangement. The PEO still has to answer to the owner on any final decisions.
In general, PEOs are more equipped than payroll software products to build a comprehensive HR system that takes work culture and employee growth into account.
What to know about Oasis
While payroll software can help small-business owners streamline some of their administrative tasks, Oasis takes things a step further by offering more personalized HR and payroll support. Though your company will still be responsible for reviewing payroll and fielding HR-related questions, the PEO offers solid live support so you can get help if you're not sure how to handle something. In addition to getting a dedicated payroll specialist and HR professional, you'll have access to a 24-hour HR service center. You can also choose to run payroll automatically if you have mostly salaried employees whose hours don’t change.
The platform comes with strong reporting capabilities, too. You can schedule reports in advance, and it will automatically generate and email those selected reports.
Tax filing and payments
Yes. Oasis calculates and files payroll taxes automatically for its clients.
Ability to manage employee benefits
Excellent. Business owners can see which employees haven’t elected benefits yet, in addition to who selected which plan.
Employee access to portal
Excellent. Employees can enter the portal online or via the Oasis app and view their pay stubs, time-off balance and pay summary. They can also tweak personal and direct deposit information and access available employee discounts. A document station houses important paperwork that managers email to the employee.
Excellent. Oasis matches clients with a payroll specialist and an HR professional for personal, everyday support. They can be reached by phone during normal business hours. For questions outside of working hours, clients can call a 24-hour HR service center phone number.
Ease of use
Excellent. Oasis’ dashboard is straightforward and includes a search function, as well as easy access to employee records, payroll and compliance updates. Business owners can scroll through a list of report templates, customize them and mark them as favorites.
How much does Oasis cost?
Oasis is quote-based, and each plan includes payroll, HR, employee benefits, risk management services and employee training options. Other services, like recruiting assistance and timekeeping, are considered add-on services. The PEO charges businesses either a percentage of total payroll or a per-check, per-employee fee.
To get a free quote, you have to provide your name, email address, phone number, company name, ZIP code and number of employees. From there, an Oasis representative will talk to you to determine your business’s needs. This could result in a recommendation that you go with a Paychex plan, an HR-only module or the all-in-one PEO solution.
If you’re set on teaming up with a PEO, ADP TotalSource is a popular solution worth looking into. Similar to Oasis, it has HR, employee benefits, payroll and compliance support. Its pricing is quote-based.
ADP has payroll software alternatives, too, such as RUN Powered by ADP, which is designed for small businesses with 49 employees or fewer and is easily scalable. Each RUN plan offers varying levels of HR support depending on your business’s needs. Pricing is quote-based.
Paychex, Oasis’ parent company, also offers Paychex Flex, cloud-based payroll software plans that start at $39 per month plus $5 per person per month. The two higher-tier plans integrate with a variety of HR solutions and assign business owners a dedicated payroll specialist they can turn to for questions.
Gusto is a great option for small businesses that don’t need a PEO but want a payroll solution with more support for benefits administration. Plans start at $39 per month plus $6 per person per month, and all of them include health insurance administration as well as employee onboarding tools.
QuickBooks Payroll is a convenient payroll software choice for small businesses that already use QuickBooks Online for accounting. Plans come with either same-day or next-day direct deposit. Direct integration with QuickBooks Online means your accounting records are automatically updated each time you run payroll. QuickBooks Payroll partners with Mammoth to provide HR support and SimplyInsured for employee health benefits. Plans start at $45 per month plus $4 per person per month.