In a Nutshell
- Excellent self-service portal for employees
- Supports employees and independent contractors
- Integrates with accounting software
- Pricing isn’t transparent
- Implementation can take several weeks
TriNet at a Glance
What is TriNet?
As a payroll processor, TriNet streamlines the process of paying both employees and contractors in all 50 states. It offers tools for tracking time and attendance so employees can accurately record their hours and get paid on time. It also has a self-service portal that employees can use to access pay stubs and other compensation details, reducing demands on your HR team.
TriNet automatically ensures that your company complies with local, state, and federal regulations and files taxes on your behalf. A robust reporting dashboard allows you to keep track of how much you’re spending on payroll.
In addition to running your payroll, TriNet can also manage benefit plans, help you recruit and onboard new employees, and more. TriNet also offers access to business advisors who can help ensure your company is complying with regulations and craft employee policies.
TriNet offers fast, reliable, and straightforward payroll processing. You can run payroll for employees and contractors anywhere in the US. Payments are made by direct deposit, and TriNet does not support overseas payments.
TriNet will automatically calculate payroll taxes and generate tax forms (including W-2s and 1099s) for your employees and contractors. Your employees can also view their pay stubs through an online self-service portal or using the TriNet mobile app.
TriNet integrates with Quickbooks, Xero, and other accounting platforms. So, payroll is automatically reflected in your cash flow.
Time and attendance management
Employees can track their hours and submit timecards using TriNet’s self-service portal and mobile app. You can create custom rules to approve timecards, manage how overtime is paid, round time entries, and more. TriNet automatically reviews your rules to ensure they are compliant with labor regulations.
If you use TriNet’s HR suite, the software will also track paid time off and sick leave. You can also create visual schedules and publish them so that employees can view their shifts online.
TriNet enables employees to self-report expenses for reimbursement. Employees can upload receipts using the TriNet app or import credit card transactions with a few clicks. Employees can also track their mileage or request a per diem for work-related travel. Reimbursable expenses are automatically added to your next payroll run.
TriNet offers automated compliance alerts, as well as access to payroll experts who can ensure your business remains in compliance with local, state, and federal regulations. The company will automatically register and update payroll accounts on your business’s behalf. It will also retroactively file payroll documents or correct past filings if your company is currently out of compliance.
HR and benefits management
TriNet’s comprehensive HR platform offers features for recruiting and onboarding employees, managing documents, tracking promotions, and more. It also handles benefits administration for health insurance plans, health spending accounts, life insurance plans, retirement accounts, and more.
Is TriNet Safe and Reliable?
TriNet has been operating as an IRS-certified PEO for more than 25 years. The company has an A+ rating with the Better Business Bureau and is accredited by the Employer Services Assurance Corporation (ESAC). TriNet processes more than $50 billion in payroll annually.
TriNet secures your employees’ information with end-to-end encryption and multi-factor authentication. There are multiple user roles available in TriNet, allowing you to tightly control who in your business can access sensitive information.
TriNet delivers its cloud services using Amazon Web Services, which has nearly 100% uptime and stores data on multiple redundant servers. This ensures your data is safe even if a server crashes.
How TriNet Works
TriNet offers two options for managing payroll: a cloud-based HR software suite or a managed payroll service.
With the cloud-based software, you’re in control of your payroll and can use TriNet’s tools to manage payments. The software is very easy to use for both administrators and employees. I especially like the self-service platform for employees, which enables them to submit timesheets and expenses and access their pay stubs.
With the managed payroll service, TriNet will assign you a dedicated payroll manager who will review timesheets and run payroll for your business. This is a good solution for businesses that don’t have HR employees who can manage payroll.
How To Get Started with TriNet
You can get started with TriNet by contacting the company by phone, live chat, or email. A sales representative will ask about your company and your HR needs, including payroll, and explain how your business can best use TriNet’s services. You’ll also receive a pricing estimate during this initial consultation.
Depending on the size and complexity of your business, it can take up to several weeks to transition your payroll to TriNet. The company offers support during this period to make sure your administrators know how to use TriNet’s software and to ensure your first payroll run goes smoothly.
TriNet Customer Service
TriNet offers 24/7 live chat support and phone support from 6am to 12am (ET), Monday-Friday. I called and got through to a service agent in under a minute. There’s also email support available—you can expect a response within one business day.
TriNet has a thorough online knowledge base that explains how administrators can use its cloud HR platform. However, there are few guides targeted at helping employees use the self-service portal.
How To Cancel or Pause a TriNet Subscription
TriNet doesn’t require long-term contracts, but you must give 30 days’ notice to cancel payroll services. To cancel, simply contact TriNet’s customer service team.
Is There a TriNet App?
TriNet has a free mobile app for iOS and Android. The app enables employees to track their hours and submit timesheets, make time-off requests, and see their pay stubs. Administrators can use the app to view employees’ timesheets and pay history.
The app also contains information about your company’s benefits plans and a mobile-friendly version of TriNet’s online knowledge base.
I found the app to be very easy to use. Some users have complained that it crashes from time to time, but I didn’t experience any issues while using the app.
TriNet offers pricing by quote only. Your cost will depend on factors like how many employees you have, how many states your business operates in, and how frequently you want to run payroll.
TriNet charges a flat monthly fee for each employee, so your cost won’t vary if you decide to pay bonuses or need to make an extra payroll run on occasion. You also won’t need to sign up for a lengthy contract for TriNet’s payroll or HR services.
What can you do with TriNet for free?
TriNet doesn’t offer a free plan or a free trial at this time.
TriNet offers a wide range of HR services, including benefits administration and recruiting. It also offers consulting to help your business claim tax credits. Pricing for all additional services is by quote only.
By quote only
$40-$80 per month + $6-$12 per person per month
From $39 per month
By quote only
Benefits and HR
401(k), health plans, workers’ comp, recruiting
Document management, 401(k), health insurance, workers’ comp
401(k), health insurance, workers’ comp
Health insurance, 401(k), onboarding
Automatic tax filing
iOS and Android
iOS and Android
iOS and Android
TriNet vs Gusto
Gusto offers more flexibility than TriNet. You can run payroll whenever you want at no extra cost, which is great for making one-time payments to contractors. On the other hand, Gusto doesn’t offer PEO services for businesses that don’t have HR employees.
TriNet vs ADP
TriNet and ADP offer similar payroll and HR services, and both can tailor their solutions to perfectly meet your business’s needs. ADP stands out if you want to pay employees by check, while, in my opinion, TriNet offers a better self-service portal for employees.
TriNet vs Paychex
Paychex is a user-friendly payroll platform with outstanding reporting features. However, it doesn’t include W-2 and 1099 forms free of charge. This is disappointing since you’re required to send these forms to most employees. Overall, I prefer TriNet because everything you need to manage payroll is included.
Bottom Line (Is TriNet Worth It?)
TriNet is a PEO and payroll provider that meets the needs of many small and medium-sized businesses. Its cloud-based platform enables your employees to track time and expenses so you can pay them correctly. It’s easy to run payroll on your schedule and stay in compliance with all relevant regulations.
I especially like that TriNet has great customer support and a detailed online knowledge base to make payroll easier for administrators and employees. TriNet can also help with a wide range of HR functions, so it’s a particularly good choice if you need help with recruiting, workforce management, or benefits administration alongside payroll services.