We've tried quite a few payroll programs over time, and they tend to share certain features, such as a database of company, employee, financial, and tax information that greatly simplifies the process of creating payrolls and reports. PayWindow 2012 Payroll System is a fine example of the type. Once you've populated its database with the facts it needs, doing the payroll becomes a matter of a few clicks, not hours of calculations. PayWindow 2012 (build 10) is free to try for 30 days and costs $89.95 to register.
It's probably safe to say that business owners and accountants are the sort of software buyers that actually read EULAs and other setup statements, but we recommend not skipping PayWindow's setup notification. It not only contains important information about changes to the federal tax code and how PayWindow's features and capabilities have changed to meet them, but also specific information about tax code changes for many states. When the installation process finished, a Shareware Evaluation Information screen with information for first-time users appeared. We clicked the link to open the program's tutorials and then clicked OK. This produced an On-Line Check tool that displayed a variety of build notes and buttons to Update Tax Tables, Update Program, View Updates, and Close. Clicking Close closed the update tool and opened the program and its user manual.
While it took a while to install and then set up PayWindow, things got easier when it came time to use it, in part because the program comes with plenty of example data. The user interface integrates a calendar display with buttons to quickly access any quarter's data as well as fields for opening company data, tax tables, and more. These fields all display the selected destination directory instead of a simple Browse button (much appreciated). We also like the Open Windows display just below the Quick Launch center on the left sidebar. It lists your open PayWindow windows and makes for quick access. This program has some extras, too, such as QuickBooks Export capability. PayWindow 2012 Payroll System seems like a good fit for a lot of small and medium-size companies.
Editors' note: This is a review of the trial version of PayWindow 2012 Payroll System 10.0 Build 10.0.34.