Payroll is not sexy, it’s not new and shiny but it is a necessity for most companies. It’s usually a part of the company that business owners tend to outsource. And like the typical business we too have been utilizing a third party Payroll provider since we hired our very first employee.

We have been utilizing ADP, pretty much the top dog in the payroll industry, and to put it cordially, it has not been a pleasant experience. In the mean time, we had our eye on a fast growing start-up gaining traction in Silicon Valley. They offered a simple, zen-like solution for payroll. They claimed to offer services from automatic payroll and tax payments to electronic filing and employee portals all with outstanding customer support – it sounded like payroll heaven! One problem: they didn’t have support for Arizona.

Then just a couple weeks ago, I received an email from ZenPayroll inviting RAD Development to join their “Delightful Payroll” as they had finally introduced support for our home state. We decided to switch providers to Zenpayroll, and we held the honor of being the very first Arizona Headquartered company ever to conduct payroll through Zenpayroll services. Our experience with switching payroll providers was enlightening, and I believe it is a perfect example of how Startups like Zenpayroll are disrupting traditional industries and making confident Fortune 500 companies shudder. These are just a few takeaways from disrupting Startups every company should adopt:

Customer Happiness is Everything

Due to continuous problems and complications arising on a bi-weekly basis, we were constantly calling ADP support. Our customer support calls averaged between 30 minutes to an hour – a large portion being spent on-hold waiting to talk to a representative and when you finally did, the individual wasn’t qualified to fix the problem. We were thrown into department loops constantly being transferred to someone who could supposedly solve the issue we were experiencing. And every time we would talk to a new representative, we would be asked the same questions and experience the same frustrations. The cherry on top was usually our issues couldn’t be solved immediately – it took weeks and sometimes months to solve issues requiring approvals from multiple departments.

We only experienced one issue with Zenpayroll requiring us to call in to support. The issue was mostly human error on our part and ADP creating hassles in transferring our payment history. I called Zenpayroll support myself and to my surprise after a few rings, someone actually answered – that’s right, no waiting and no automated phone obstacle course! They were very friendly and treated me as if I was a friend they hadn’t talked to in awhile. They fixed our problem almost immediately and I found myself hanging up with a smile on my face.

Great Startups like Zenpayroll make customer support a priority because they know the payroll industry or any industry for that matter is about making someone like me unusually happy about their product. Unfortunately, large enterprises like ADP focus on the bottom line and therefore put all their concentration into sales and acquiring someone like me as a client instead of trying to keep me happy.

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Great Software Empowers The Customer

When we first decided to implement ADP as our payroll provider, we worked with their sales team for almost a month getting set up with the ADP service. A MONTH! That is an eternity for a business of any size. Payroll is not a simple industry and has a lot of complexities involved; however, you would think a company of ADP’s size would have a process that could account for these complexities and speed up the process of implementation.

When we switched to ZenPayroll our implementation took less than 2 days, and we were able to run our first payroll in the same week! ZenPayroll has laid the foundation for an automated process that simplifies the entire sign-up process. They have a strong focus on innovation and their product/service success is tied directly with their software. ZenPayroll knows that innovative software is one of the strongest differentiators there are in today’s market. They have invested in the development of a software solution that allows clients to sign themselves up with very little help from ZenPayroll staff which means faster implementations and more pleasant customer experiences.

People Are Not Scalable

There’s a great quote by a business man named Ricardo Semler, author of the book Maverick. He said that only two things grow for the sake of growth: businesses and tumors. Both ADP and ZenPayroll have priorities to grow their companies; however, growth means completely different things to them. ADP sees growth as a formula: more employees = more customers = more revenue. ZenPayroll sees growth in expanding their product and services to build a better quality experience with each of their customers.

This isn’t just quality versus quantity. ZenPayroll focuses on their service and what they can do for their customers. They know that creating a scalable business model means creating a service that allows for more quality experiences for more customers managed with less employees. Businesses can not grow just for the sake of growing. Startups like ZenPayroll stay lean and focus on their product fulfilling the expectations of their customers.


Great Startups are building their companies with new age business tactics keeping them lean, efficient and ultimately better experiences for customers. Massive corporations like ADP struggle to adapt to this new climate since their entire infrastructure is antiquated. This creates incredible opportunities for Startups and open-minded businesses to capture market share by being swift, efficient and “delightful”.

If you want to try Zenpayroll out for 2 months for free, you can sign up here: