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What are the best payroll products for accountants in 2021?


BrightPay returned to the top of the payroll charts for the first time in three years to take home the software awards prize.

9th Feb 2022
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Having lost out to The Payroll Site for the past two years, BrightPay saw its share of the vote surge to win the award it last picked up back in 2018.

The desktop-based tool provides payroll for over 330,000 businesses across the UK and Ireland and has built its reputation on usability, customer satisfaction and value for money.

Payroll software as an industry has had a turbulent two years, with covid support schemes necessitating numerous changes, sometimes at late notice, and with new entrants and products seeking to make inroads into the burgeoning cloud payroll market, more change is on the horizon.

AccountingWEB head of insight Julian Green commented: “The user votes in this category reflect our State of the Software Nation study in 2021, which gave BrightPay an industry-leading Net Promoter Score of 76. Following up on those findings in our continuing survey work showed high satisfaction rates across the category (90%) in Q4 2021. But when we isolated responses from larger firms satisfaction levels fell by 10 basis points. That resonates with our earlier findings that 23% of larger firms plan to review their payroll providers in 2022.”



% vote






FreeAgent Payroll



The Payroll Site









Sage 50cloud Payroll



Awards methodology

Throughout the year AccountingWEB members are invited to nominate their favourite apps across the 10 categories listed here. Those votes are compiled into rankings on which the awards are decided. The trend indicators are based on rankings within the category, or where they haven’t changed by the number of rankings achieved compared to the previous awards.

The polls are already open for this year’s awards, so if you’d like to have your say:

Vote for your favourite software here

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