Best Human Resource Software 2021

Zenefits Competitors & Alternatives

Are you considering purchasing Zenefits to manage your human resource management needs? Before making the purchase, it’s best to learn about Zenefits’ top competitors. The six best alternatives are listed below, along with details on their features and pricing.

Zenefits is one of the most popular human resource solutions on the market today. That market, however, is competitive. Therefore, we recommend comparing Zenefits against its top competitors before purchasing.

There are many excellent competitors in the human resource space that are worth considering. Most of Zenefits’s top competitors offer similar or less robust features at less affordable prices.

Software CompanyAnalyst RatingFeaturesUsabilityPricingCustomer Support
Zenefits959.59.59.59.5
Justworks939.510810
Gusto92910107.5
Zoho People908.59108
BambooHR8998.589
Sage HR8998.57.59.5
ADP RUN8388.588.5

Throughout this article, we’ll provide an overview of the main Zenefits competitors and alternatives, which are:

In this guide, we examine Zenefits’s features and pricing, and compare these factors against competitors. To gain a better understanding of Zenefits as a solution, you can read our in-depth Zenefits review.

All of the information in this article is based upon research, discussions with small business owners, and dozens of hours spent hand-testing the leader human resource software platforms. To learn more about our research and reviews, read about our unbiased review process.

Table of Contents

Zenefits Features

Before we compare Zenefits against its competitors, it’s important to understand the features included in Zenefits. Zenefits offers features geared more towards human resource management and payroll rather than applicant tracking.

The seven most important features that Zenefits offers are described in the table below. Zenefits’ employee onboarding and time tracking are its strongest features.

FeatureDescription
Employee OnboardingZenefits’ employee onboarding is advanced compared to alternatives. You can send onboarding documents, perform background checks, and automatically create software accounts for your new hires.
PayrollZenefits’ payroll is similar to Gusto and Justworks. You can run a number of off-cycle payments for hourly, salaried, and other contingent workers. Zenefits can also calculate, remit, and file taxes for your business.
Time TrackingTime tracking in Zenefits is helpful for salaried and hourly employees. Employees can use Zenefits’ mobile and desktop apps to clock in and out of work. Newer businesses will also find Zenefits’ paid-time-off (PTO) policy creator helpful.
Compliance SupportCompliance support in Zenefits is decent. You are notified of required documents and changing compliance laws much like Justworks and Gusto. Zenefits also automates certain compliance support features such as creating W-2s.
BenefitsBenefits management is easy to set up in Zenefits but not supported in Hawaii. Zenefits supports a number of medical, dental, and vision plans.
Performance ManagementZenefits’s performance management is easy to manage and use. You can run performance reviews, track employee goals, and send surveys for employee feedback.
Analytics and ReportingZenefits’s analytics and custom report creation are limited. You cannot preview your custom reports before you export them. However, you’re provided a number of helpful pre-made reports to gain analysis from.

Zenefits Competitor Overview: Features

Below is a chart that compares each platform’s features and affordability. They differ primarily based on how affordable each platform is and how wide their breadth of features is.

For example, solutions like ADP RUN are built more for payroll rather than human resource management. This is limiting for businesses interested in recruiting features or performance management. This contrasts with Zenefits, which is the strongest all-in-one human resource software solution we’ve analyzed.

Human Resource Competitors Feature Chart

Zenefits Competitor Overview: Pricing

Zenefits’ pricing starts at $10 per user per month. Payroll, advisory services, and onboarding your own broker to the platform cost an additional $6, $10, and $5 respectively. Compared to its competitors’ pricing, Zenefits is one of the most affordable solutions.

Here are the prices of Zenefits and its top competitors with additional pricing details:

Software VendorStarting Monthly PriceFree TrialPricing Details
Zenefits$10 per userYes
  • Free for up to five employees
  • Additional $1.50 per month per user for base plan
Justworks$49Yes
  • 15% off if your company has 25 to 99 employees
Gusto$39No
  • Additional $6 per month per user
Zoho PeopleFreeNo
  • None
BambooHR$99Yes
  • $99 for up to 12 users
  • Additional $8.25 per month per user for base plan
Sage HR$5.50 per userYes
  • None
ADP RUNCustomNo
  • None

Top Zenefits Competitors

Below are one-to-one comparisons between Zenefits and its top alternatives. Zenefits is best for customers interested primarily in running affordable payroll for their employees as well as automating important onboarding processes for new hires. We’ve ranked Zenefits’s top six competitors based on their features, pricing, and usability.

#1: Justworks

Justworks is the closest alternative to Zenefits in regards to features. Because both solutions are similar in features, we recommend Zenefits over Justworks due to its affordability. However, Justworks offers stronger compliance assistance features such as complimentary training videos.

For more details, read our in-depth analysis of Justworks vs. Zenefits.

You'll prefer Zenefits if:

  • Zenefits supports benefits in your state
  • You are in need of an affordable human resource solution
  • You want to automatically onboard new employees onto your software systems
You'll prefer Justworks if:

  • Zenefits does not support benefits in your state
  • You want to offer free training courses for your employees
  • You are a newer business in need of a user-friendly HR product
Justworks
Rating: 93
Starting Price: $49 per month per user

Justworks is a human resource software solution used by over 130,000 employees. It is primarily built for businesses with 2-200 employees.

Pros:
  • Justworks’ interface is user-friendly for newer businesses
  • Payroll in Justworks can be used in all 50 states
  • Justworks comes with a number of free training courses to assist with compliance
  • Justworks allows you to set permissions for your employees
Cons:
  • Justworks cannot create and distribute job postings
  • Justworks does not offer native expense management features
  • You cannot preview reports in Justworks, which hinders your workflow
  • Justworks does not offer a high number of native integrations

#2: Gusto

Gusto is one of Zenefits’ closest competitors centered around payroll. Zenefits is similarly priced, especially if you have 10 employees or less. We highly recommend Zenefits over Gusto if this is the case for your business.

Still, Gusto is a viable option for businesses in need of affordable payroll. Also note that Zenefits supports benefits management in 49 states while Gusto only supports 39.

For more details, read our in-depth analysis of Zenefits vs. Gusto.

You'll prefer Zenefits if:

  • You leverage HR software for onboarding and performance management
  • You want to automate creating new software accounts for new hires
  • You want to perform background checks on new hires
You'll prefer Gusto if:

  • Gusto can offer benefits management in your state
  • You have 10 employees or more and are in need of affordable payroll
  • You want to easily create customizable reports
Gusto
Rating: 92
Starting Price: $39 per month

Gusto is a human resource software solution used by more than 100,000 businesses. Gusto started as a payroll solution, but has since added a variety of HR features including benefits and compliance support. Gusto is generally used by small businesses with less than 500 employees.

Pros:
  • Payroll is very user-friendly and simple to set up in Gusto
  • Gusto offers features that help your business stay compliant with state and federal policies
  • Gusto allows you to create highly customizable and detailed reports
Cons:
  • You cannot post and manage job listings with Gusto
  • Gusto does not include a dedicated applicant tracking system
  • Employee benefits are not available for 11 states in Gusto
  • Gusto does not include expense management features

#3: Zoho People

Zoho People is an alternative to Zenefits designed around recruiting. Zoho People is more similar to BambooHR and Sage HR rather than Zenefits.

Still, we analyzed that it is the best software solution for businesses interested in affordable recruiting features such as job post distribution and interview pipelines.

You'll prefer Zenefits if:

  • You do not require recruiting features in your HR software
  • You want to automatically onboard new employees onto your software systems
  • You are a newer business in need of a user-friendly HR product
You'll prefer Zoho People if:

  • You leverage HR software mainly for recruiting features
  • You want a more affordable HR software solution
  • You do not require robust performance management features
Zoho People
Rating: 90
Starting Price: Free

Zoho People is a human resource software solution best for businesses interested in affordable software that excels at recruiting and managing expenses.

Pros:
  • Zoho People integrates with a large number of job boards to distribute your job posts
  • Zoho People offers convenient expense management features such as receipt scanning
  • Creating reports is flexible in Zoho People
Cons:
  • Payroll and benefits are only available in India
  • Zoho People cannot automate employee offboarding processes
  • Performance management is not as user-friendly as alternatives

#4: BambooHR

BambooHR is more similar to Zoho People and Sage HR than Zenefits in regards to its features. We recommend Zenefits over BambooHR for its wider and more robust set of features.

BambooHR could work as an alternative to Zenefits if recruiting features are important for your business. However, consider the more affordable Zoho People before making any further purchase decisions.

For more details, read our in-depth analysis of Zenefits vs. BambooHR.

You'll prefer Zenefits if:

  • You need HR software for payroll, benefits, and onboarding assistance
  • You want to automatically onboard new employees onto your software systems
  • You want to perform background checks on new hires
You'll prefer BambooHR if:

  • You require a solution to create and distribute job posts
  • You only need to track benefits for your company instead of selecting them
  • You do not need a robust custom report creator
BambooHR
Rating: 89
Starting Price: $99 per month

BambooHR is a human resource software solution best for businesses with 25 to 300 employees. It is primarily used by businesses to create job postings and time track employees. Its standout features are its recruiting capabilities, as well as its onboarding and offboarding features.

Pros:
  • Job postings are very user-friendly and simple to set up in BambooHR
  • BambooHR can automate and track onboarding and offboarding processes
  • Monitoring employee hours is easy to visualize with BambooHR’s calendar
Cons:
  • Payroll, time tracking, and performance management modules all cost additional money
  • BambooHR does not support expense management
  • You cannot run benefits directly in BambooHR

#5: Sage HR

Sage HR is a less user-friendly and more limited alternative to Zenefits. Its strong points are its workflow automations and its performance management. Sage HR is closer to BambooHR and Zoho People than Zenefits.

We highly recommend selecting Zenefits over Sage HR due to its accessibility and affordability.

You'll prefer Zenefits if:

  • You do not require recruiting features in your HR software
  • You’re in need of user-friendly payroll, benefits, and onboarding assistance
  • You are a newer business in need of a user-friendly HR product
You'll prefer Sage HR if:

  • You leverage HR software mainly for recruiting features
  • You want a more affordable HR software solution
  • You are in need of robust performance management features
Sage HR
Rating: 89
Starting Price: $5.50 per month per user

Sage HR is a human resource software used by small businesses with up to 125 employees. It is used by businesses to create job postings and track applicants and their interview process. Its standout features are its hiring and onboarding, as well as its analytics and reporting.

Pros:
  • Job postings are very user-friendly and simple to set up in Sage HR
  • Sage HR can automate repetitive tasks through workflow automation
  • Sage HR comes with helpful reports on your company and employees
Cons:
  • You cannot run payroll or manage employee benefits with Sage HR
  • Sage HR does not assist you with state and federal compliance
  • Sage HR does not offer an adequate amount of native integrations with other software tools

#6: ADP RUN

ADP RUN is a direct alternative to Zenefits also centered around payroll. Zenefits’ features and accessibility all help small businesses carry out essential human resource tasks far more effectively than ADP RUN.

For more details, read our in-depth analysis of Zenefits vs. ADP RUN.

You'll prefer Zenefits if:

  • Zenefits supports benefits management in your state
  • You want a more affordable payroll solution
  • You require compliance assistance and performance management features
You'll prefer ADP RUN if:

  • You want to create customizable reports for employee and company analysis
  • You require onboarding assistance for new hires and payroll
  • You want to purchase business coverage services such as general liability insurance
ADP RUN
Rating: 83
Starting Price: Custom

ADP RUN is a human resource software solution used by over 700,000 businesses. It is used by businesses primarily to run payroll. It is built for businesses with 1-49 employees.

Pros:
  • Payroll in ADP RUN can be used in all 50 states
  • ADP RUN assists with selecting business insurance
  • ADP RUN allows you to send physical checks for payroll
  • Creating reports in ADP RUN is flexible and easy to do
Cons:
  • ADP RUN’s pricing is not transparent
  • ADP RUN’s user interface and lack of guidance make onboarding and offboarding difficult for newer businesses
  • ADP RUN does not support both performance and expense management features
  • Creating and distributing job posts must be done through ADP Run’s ZipRecruiter integration

Bottom Line

Zenefits is simultaneously affordable and robust human resource software solution that can run unlimited payroll, automate important onboarding processes, and manage your company’s benefits. Zenefits received the highest rating in the HR category.

Before you make your purchase, we also suggest comparing Zenefits to other highly rated platforms:

  • Justworks is best for businesses in need of software similar to Zenefits that want stronger compliance support.
  • Zoho People is ideal for businesses that need greater expense management features than Zenefits offers.
  • Gusto is best for businesses with more than 10 employees in need of more affordable payroll.
Yousef Fatehpour

Yousef Fatehpour is a Junior Research Analyst at SoftwarePundit. He graduated from University of California, San Diego, where he studied Human Centered Design and Communications. His work at UCSD's Design Lab emphasized UX research and product management.

Yousef's primary areas of interest are software design, user journeys, and how user experience is handled across software markets. Yousef also has experience in product design and multimedia content production. You can connect with Yousef on LinkedIn.

Yousef is an expert in several software categories including:

  • SMS marketing software
  • Document management software
  • Human resource software
  • Applicant tracking software
  • Design software

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