Payroll reports are documents that are generated from accounting records that have to do with the payroll of a business or company. The reports are normally structured to account for all payroll transactions for a specified period of time. They may cover a single pay period, or include data relevant to longer periods, such as a quarterly or annual payroll.
There are several key components that are part of basic payroll reports. The wages and salaries of employees working with the company during the cited period form the basis for the report. Along with carrying gross figures for salary and wages, these reports also identify the net amount of pay extended to the employee.
Along with salary or wages, payroll reports also break down any and all types of withholding activity. Withholdings will include detail on the amount of taxes retained by the employer for forwarding to local and national tax agencies. In the event that there is some type of national financial security program, such as the Social Security program of the United States, employers also withhold a calculated amount and forward the funds to the appropriate agency.
Payroll reports also reflect other types of withholding as well. Examples of these other forms of withholding would include voluntary contributions to retirement programs, payroll deductions associated with garnishments, or premiums withheld to pay for all or a portion of healthcare insurance provided through the employer. The total amount of withholdings and the net income issued to the employee will equal the gross income listed for the period cited.
While a great deal of the detail on these reports focuses on how wages and salaries are distributed, a typical report will also include information on taxes paid by the employer. In many countries, employers are responsible for paying taxes in addition to those withheld from an employee’s pay. Comprehensive payroll reports include information about both the cumulative total of employer taxes paid during the period as well as a breakdown of the tax burden to a specific amount per employee.
While payroll reports were once generated manually, many companies now make use of software that quickly analyzes all appropriate data and organizes the information into useful formats. Most financial software provides templates that can be used to generate payroll reports.