It’s vital that you choose the right Pennsylvania professional employer organization (PEO) to support your company and contribute to its continued growth and success.
The right PEO will save you time and stress by handling all your employee management, benefits procurement, and HR tasks, freeing you up to focus on all the other important tasks you need to perform to keep your business running.
The wrong PEO will cost you more than just money. The wrong Pennsylvania PEO will not only be expensive, but also waste your time and stress you out because it’s not properly handling the HR tasks you’ve paid for, which will leave you without the financial and mental resources necessary to keep your company on the right track.
I looked into over 900 different PEO companies, thoroughly investigated the top 15 and then reviewed the top 9. Through this process, I’ve identified the best PEO Pennsylvania has to offer and provided them for you in this brief guide.
But before I get into that, there’s something you should know.
The Best PEO Isn't Always the Right PEO
I’ve spent countless hours researching over 900 different PEO companies to identify the best PEO Pennsylvania has to offer across a variety of rating factors. But just because this professional employer organization has the highest overall score doesn’t mean it’s automatically the best Pennsylvania PEO service for your company.
- Some PEO companies have extensive experience in specific industries and can offer specialized services.
- Some PEO companies have developed good relationships with health insurance providers, which means they have greater bargaining power and can offer better rates, more benefit package options for your employees, and reduced health insurance costs for your entire company.
- Some PEO companies specialize in compliance and can offer excellent compliance support to ensure your company meets both state and federal guidelines.
There’s only one way to find the best PEO service for your company: a comprehensive comparison of each company’s services and prices weighed against the particular needs of your Pennsylvania business. This ensures that you’re not just getting the best overall PEO service, but the best professional employer organization for your business based on metrics that matter the most to you.
If you’d like a free business analysis and personalized PEO recommendation for your company, enter your information below. I’ll respond within 24 hours and provide you with a business analysis to let you know which services your company needs, and a Pennsylvania PEO service recommendation tailored to meet the needs of your business.
But if you’re just here to see which professional employer organizations got the highest scores, here are my recommendations for the best Pennsylvania PEO.
1. Vensure — 9.45/10 (Best Overall PEO)
I chose Vensure as the best PEO service in Pennsylvania because even though none of its services stand out as unique and there isn’t any superior quality, it provides all of its standard services with a high level of efficiency. The key difference between Vensure and other professional employer organizations is that you’ll likely never encounter any problems with Vensure.
Vensure is a full-service PEO solution that provides all the services that Pennsylvania businesses need:
- Human resources paperwork
- Employee benefits
- Tax filings
- Compliance assistance
- Tax rates
- Payroll management
- Employee contracts
- Expense reporting
- Dental insurance
- Risk mitigation
- Personnel management support
- Health insurance
- Workers’ compensation insurance
- Administrative services
- Retirement plans
- Employee benefits administration
- HR support
- Other benefits
Vensure also backs all of its services up with solid customer support. If you have a general question you can email customer service and expect a response within 24 hours. If you have a more pressing issue, you can call its customer support line for more prompt assistance.
One of the best features of Vensure is even though it has the technological capability to support larger firms, it focuses on smaller businesses.
This means it can support your Pennsylvania business, no matter where you are on your business journey, and it can scale to meet your needs no matter how much your company grows.
The only criticism I can make about Vensure’s services is that although all of its services are good, none of them are truly exceptional.
- It covers all the services that most Pennsylvania businesses need, but it doesn’t offer any premium or exotic PEO services.
- Its customer support is reliable and competent enough to answer any question you ask about Vensure’s services, but it won’t do anything to blow your mind, like send you a birthday card.
- Its pricing is low enough to be competitive in the Pennsylvania PEO market, but not as low as some other PEO providers. It’s definitely not going to put itself out of business or price its services low enough to detriment itself just to get you a good deal.
So while all of its services are good, you won’t find one feature that really stands out and blows your mind.
Vensure is my top pick for the best PEO in Pennsylvania because it provides all the services that Pennsylvania businesses need, and all the benefits your employees want, and it provides all of its services well. Vensure backs its services up with quality customer support and tops it all off with competitive prices.
Vensure bases its price on the size of your company (how many employees you have), so to get a personalized quote for your business, go here: Vensure.
2. CoAdvantage PEO — 7.90/10 (Best Customer Service PEO )
Sure, CoAdvantage PEO is in second place on my list, but don’t let that fool you. It’s still a solid Pennsylvania PEO provider. It very narrowly missed my #1 spot, and it even beats Vensure in one area.
As a full-service Pennsylvania PEO, CoAdvantage offers all the services that Vensure offers. You’ll get health insurance, dental insurance, workers’ compensation, payroll administration, assistance with tax filings and HR tasks, and other benefits to help you manage your Pennsylvania-based employees.
It provides a relatively easy-to-use system and prices low enough to compete with other Pennsylvania PEO providers.
But the area where CoAdvantage really stood out was its customer support.
I ran three different customer support tests and found that CoAdvantage responds to emails in around 46 minutes on average, and your average wait time on customer support calls will be under two minutes.
But its customer support wasn’t just fast—it was extremely helpful and efficient, as well. CoAdvantage’s staff answered all my questions and solved my problems in a reasonable amount of time. But the remarkable thing about its customer support is that they actually solved my problems, so I didn’t have to call back. And I didn’t have to get transferred to multiple agents and explain my problem repeatedly to different people, and management never had to get involved.
I feel that the only thing it could have done to enhance my customer service experience would be to send me a birthday card.
The reason that CoAdvantage is in my #2 position is though it’s got competitive prices and a somewhat easy-to-use system, Vensure outperformed it on both accounts.
Sometimes CoAdvantage’s system was confusing, and I had to call its excellent customer support team to help me figure it out. And though it’s got competitive prices, when I got quotes for my three fictitious businesses, they all came in at around 10% higher than the quotes I got from Vensure.
It’s worth pointing out that these criticisms aren’t usually deal breakers to most Pennsylvania business owners—especially if you want great customer support. But they were just enough to move CoAdvantage down to second place.
CoAdvantage is a great Pennsylvania PEO firm that offers a full range of services with competitive prices. And it backs it up with outstanding customer service. Its system isn’t always the most user friendly, and its prices are a bit more expensive than Vensure’s. But I still feel that CoAdvantage is a good professional employer organization option, and especially for business owners who value good customer support.
As with all Pennsylvania state PEOs, CoAdvantage structures its prices according to a number of factors, such as how many employees you have and the types of benefits you want to offer your employees. So if you want a personalized quote for your company, click here: CoAdvantage.
3. Amplify PEO — 7.41/10 (Best Value PEO)
Amplify PEO is my #3 Pennsylvania PEO recommendation. It’s a good professional employer organization option, but it disappointed me in a couple of areas.
Like the other two Pennsylvania PEOs on my list, Amplify PEO offers a variety of PEO services. Its primary features include health insurance, workers’ compensation, payroll administration, and other services to help you manage your Pennsylvania-based employees and meet your HR needs.
Amplify’s system was relatively simple to use, and its customer support team was skilled enough to answer my questions and help solve my issues in a timely manner.
But the best part about Amplify’s Pennsylvania PEO services is its pricing. The three quotes I got for my fictional businesses were all in the top three prices I received from Pennsylvania PEOs, with the quote I got for my small business coming in first place. I included all the service options available with other PEO providers, so it really illustrated the value of Amplify’s services.
Although Amplify PEO is a great value, there are a few drawbacks to its services.
It was easy to get set up with the system, but once I was set up in it, I had trouble navigating it. I ran into problems even though I was simply trying to perform some routine tasks in the system.
I had to contact Amplify’s customer support team to help get me through these navigational issues, and even though I got a response in a reasonable amount of time, Amplify’s service paled in comparison to that of CoAdvantage.
So, while Amplify is good, there’s nothing it’s great at.
Amplify is a dependable, solid Pennsylvania state PEO option for any Pennsylvania business, and it has excellent prices. Its system isn’t the easiest to navigate, and it’s sure to pose problems for anyone who doesn’t have strong technological skills, and its customer service isn’t as good as it could be. However, you won’t find another PEO service that has better rates.
Like all Pennsylvania PEOs, Amplify bases its prices on various information about your company, like the number of employees you have and the types of benefits you want to offer your employees, so for a full quote for your business, go here: Amplify PEO.
Justworks is a Pennsylvania PEO firm that was established as recently as 2012, so it’s new to the Pennsylvania PEO market.
Like the other PEO services on my list, this PEO offers insurance, payroll administration, workers’ compensation, and other services to help you manage your employees and meet your HR needs. But it offers something that no other Pennsylvania state PEO offers: transparency.
Justworks lists its pricing structure publicly on its website, so anyone can access it. The entire PEO industry seems to try to hide price structures, forcing potential clients to sit through a sales call and give information about their business (like how many employees they have) just to get a quote, so this kind of transparency is a major bonus.
The reason Justworks is so far down the list is its inexperience and young age. The age of a PEO is quite important in the PEO world.
It takes a long time and a lot of work to get properly established with a Pennsylvania state PEO, and it’s a process that most Pennsylvania businesses can’t afford to repeat multiple times if the start-up PEO they chose suddenly ceases operations.
I recommend that you wait a few years before giving Justworks your business, so that it can better establish itself in the PEO industry.
If you’d like to know more about Justworks and its services, check out its website here.
5. Infiniti HR
Infiniti HR has managed to set itself apart from other Pennsylvania state PEOs by offering a unique service that Pennsylvania businesses appreciate.
It offers a full range of PEO services, including various types of insurances (health, dental, and workers’ compensation), benefits for employees, payroll services, and more.
On top of providing the typical PEO services, it also exceeds service expectations by offering employee recruitment assistance. If you’ve ever had one good employee, then you’re aware of how just one good employee can positively impact the entire company. So the fact that this PEO company helps with recruitment is a great perk.
The reason Infiniti HR is so far down the list is the same reason Justworks isn’t in the top three: its age. This 10-year-old business is just a toddler cutting its teeth in the PEO industry. It hasn’t had time to develop the trust of its clients and peers, or to establish strong roots in the PEO world, so it’s a good idea to give it a few years to give Infiniti the opportunity to prove itself before giving it your business.
TriNet is the PEO company that’s been around the longest, and it’s thoroughly established itself in the market as a result. It was established in 1988, and since then it has developed more than 16,000 companies and has over 330,000 employees under its corporate umbrella.
TriNet offers all the services that Pennsylvania state businesses have come to expect. However, rather than offering either alluring exotic services or superb quality, it seems to depend on its big name and reputation to draw in new clients.
TriNet’s customer service is nothing to write home about, it doesn’t innovate or create new products and services in an attempt to solve problems or meet the needs of its customer base, and it won’t put in any extra effort to gain you as a client. Perhaps there’s no reason to—even if Trinet doesn’t gain you as a customer, it’ll still get plenty of new clients because of its branding and name recognition.
So, while TriNet is a reliable PEO that you can trust, it’s never going to really wow you with the way it delivers its services, and it’s not likely to offer up any cutting edge, industry-leading products any time soon.
7. Oasis Outsourcing
Oasis is another veteran of the PEO industry. It’s been serving both big and smaller businesses for more than 20 years. It was acquired by PayChex recently but still operates under its original name.
Oasis offers not only all the services that Pennsylvania state businesses expect from PEO companies, but also industry-specific services. Some of the unique offerings it provides serves the education, retail, hospitality and banking industries, among others. The reason it got such a bad score is due to its policy of only allowing clients to sign 12-month contracts for some reason.
The entire PEO industry in Pennsylvania runs on a month-to-month contractual basis, so the fact that Oasis makes each potential client submit to a 12-month contract is not only unnecessary, but weird. Needless to say, it lost some points for this unusual practice.
8. ADP Totalsource
ADP Totalsource is one of the largest PEO companies on my list of best PEO services in Pennsylvania. It offers PEO services not just to businesses in Pennsylvania, but in more than 140 countries the world over. Also, like Oasis, it offers both a full range of PEO services and industry-specific PEO solutions.
One of the best features of ADP’s services is its customer service. Its customer service isn’t only accessible to you as the business owner, but also to your employees. This means that if your employees have questions about their health care, benefits packages, payroll, or any HR concerns, they can contact ADP directly, instead of contacting you and then you contacting ADP on behalf of your employees. This is a vast improvement that has the potential to save you time. And in business, time is money.
The downside to ADP is one that’s also experienced with TriNet. If you’re a small business in Pennsylvania, then you’ll get lost in a sea of clients from all over the world, many of which are quite large. And because your company will essentially be viewed as insignificant to this big PEO’s overall operations, it will never get the support and attention from its PEO that it needs to properly grow and thrive.
Insperity is a PEO company that I believed had a lot of potential, but I was ultimately disappointed with its services.
Things were looking up for the company when I learned its history and found out it has a 30-year history and is known for winning awards for its products and services. Then I went on to discover that it allows businesses to cancel services at any time (as long as you give 30 days notice), and I was convinced that this was a PEO company that prided itself on providing superior products and services.
Then I learned about one aspect of Insperity’s services that changed my mind: health care.
Most Pennsylvania state business owners know that health care is a very important issue that requires a lot of options and flexibility to get it right. Your employees’ health care needs are as unique as each individual employee is, so having a variety of health care and benefit package options means you’ll have a better chance of meeting your employees’ insurance needs.
But, Insperity only offers health insurance plans from one provider, for whatever reason. Why? I never found the answer to that question during the course of my investigation, and to this day I still don’t have a good answer to that question. It’s just what it does.
In short, if you choose Insperity to cover your PEO needs, then your employees will have limited insurance options and their health care needs may not be adequately met.
The Best PEO for Your Business
There are over 900 different PEO companies available to business owners in Pennsylvania, which can make choosing the best PEO service a daunting task that requires due diligence.
I’ve spent more than 230 hours during the past six years extensively researching the PEO industry to find the best PEO services in Pennsylvania, and Vensure, CoAdvantage, and Amplify PEO were identified as the top three.
But even though these PEO services are good enough to cover the needs of nearly any company in Pennsylvania, that doesn’t guarantee that they’re the best PEO companies for your business. To find the best PEO for your business, you need a recommendation tailored for your business based on factors specific to you:
- The number of employees on your payroll
- What you want the PEO to help with (payroll, HR compliance, workers’ compensation insurance, etc.)
- Employee benefits you want to offer to your team (such as health insurance and workers’ compensation insurance)
- How much you can afford to spend on employee benefits
- The location of your small business
- The location where you conduct your business (if outside the office)
- How much customer support you will need
- Your technological capabilities
- How large you plan to scale
- Your industry
If you would like to find the right PEO for your company, simply enter your details below and I will provide a free assessment of your company's needs.
The Best PEO Selection Process
I used an extensive process to find the best PEO service in Pennsylvania. But before I get into explaining my process, you should know a bit about me.
Why You Should Trust Me
The reason you can trust me to make reliable PEO recommendations is that I’ve got more knowledge and experience with the PEO industry than nearly anyone else—even more than some people currently working in the industry themselves. I gained this information and experience from both using PEO companies for my own businesses, as well as from advising people and helping them find their ideal PEO service.
I first dipped my toes into the PEO industry when I began my online health business. I was completely overwhelmed with learning all the things I needed to start and maintain my business, like building websites, writing articles and managing employees. I didn’t have any time left over in my day to deal with all the basic HR tasks that were piling up and eating up my time.
I originally hired a staffing company to help me handle some of my issues, but it didn’t quite get the job done. So I eventually partnered with an outstanding PEO company.
After that ordeal, I decided to take some time off before I started my next business venture—a cafe! It’s a vast understatement to say that there’s a night and day difference between running an online health business and a cafe.
But no matter how different the two businesses were, the one common problem I ran into with both of them was HR headaches. So, based on my previous experience, I knew I needed a good PEO service to solve my problem, and I began studying the PEO industry extensively to find the best PEO for my business. I combed through websites, read online reviews, and stayed on the phone listening to pitches from sales teams when all I wanted were simple answers to basic questions. It was a LOT of information and work. But this process eventually led me to find the best PEO service to support my company and foster its growth.
It wasn’t long until I learned that I don’t really have the right personality for the hospitality industry, so I eventually closed down my cafe and again took some time off to figure out my next move. The answer came to me unexpectedly when my friends and associates from my previous businesses started coming to me for advice about how to handle their back-end business operations.
The more recommendations I made, the more people came to me to request PEO recommendations. Eventually, I began jotting down the recommendations I made. Since then, I’ve helped over 1,200 people by providing them with custom PEO recommendations, which has given me more experience than nearly anyone else in the industry.
How I Selected the Best PEO
The first part of my extensive process to choose the best PEO services in Pennsylvania was a four-stage investigation that served to whittle away at a list of more than 900 PEO companies and reduce it down to a short list of viable candidates.
Stage 1: Reviews
The first stage involved reading online reviews for each Pennsylvania state PEO service.
Any Pennsylvania PEO service that has been in business longer than a year should have accumulated a lot of online feedback about its services. This customer feedback provided me with the information I needed to remove inferior PEO companies from my list before wasting too much time on further investigating them.
I checked out major online review sites (like Yelp and TrustPilot) to find out which Pennsylvania PEO services weren’t meeting industry standards in terms of products and services, prices, and customer support and then removed them from my list
Stage 2: Offering Analysis
Unfortunately, the professional employer organization industry isn’t uniform. This means that various PEO companies offer different services and different products. In fact, it’s not uncommon for two different companies with identical service offerings to charge different prices for the same services.
The second stage of my investigation was to find out about the services and prices each company offered. This left me with a comprehensive spreadsheet that detailed the services and prices of each company, and allowed me to eliminate any company from my list that either didn’t offer a full range of services, or offered basic services for an exorbitant price.
Stage 3: Speaking With Real Customers
Checking out online reviews is a good way to get a basic understanding about a company, but I’ve found that online reviews have two significant limitations.
The first is that most customers won’t even bother to leave an online review unless they’ve either had an inconceivably good or an overwhelmingly horrible experience with a company. This means that if you base your understanding of a company solely using online reviews, then your information will be extremely polarized because half of the customer reviews will sing its praises, while the other half condemn it.
The other limitation is space. Most of the biggest online review platforms only allow customers to leave reviews of 200 characters or less. This is certainly not enough information to find out whether a Pennsylvania state company is worth your time.
To circumvent these limitations, I decided to speak to real customers as the third stage of my investigation. I did this by reaching out to customers and visitors to my website, as well as existing relationships I had with Pennsylvania business owners I knew to use PEO services.
I was able to ask these Pennsylvania state business owners and customers thorough questions and get details about the customer experience working with these Pennsylvania PEO companies, and they gave me well-thought-out responses that filled in the gaps and allowed me to develop an understanding about what it’s like to work with these companies.
Stage 4: Speaking With Their Sales Teams
The last stage of my investigation was finding out how these Pennsylvania state PEOs handle criticism and less-than-positive feedback.
I gathered up all the information, feedback, and complaints I’d found throughout my investigation, called up all the Pennsylvania PEOs’ sales and customer service teams, and pushed them for explanations. Their responses were quite telling.
Do they constantly change and innovate to solve problems and enhance the customer experience, or are they stubbornly stuck in their ways? Do they accept responsibility for their mistakes, or do they try to blame customers for their failures? The answers to these questions separated the best Pennsylvania PEO companies from the rest.
I used five different rating factors to find the best PEO.
Factor 1: Offerings
The first rating factor was service offerings.
It’s illogical to partner with a Pennsylvania PEO service to provide a specific type of employee benefits if that Pennsylvania PEO company doesn’t offer the employee benefits you’re seeking. So to make sure you don’t choose a PEO company in Pennsylvania that doesn’t meet all your service needs, I created a detailed spreadsheet that compared each company’s services and used it to rate each company.
Factor 2: Price
The second rating factor was price.
The price of different PEO companies in Pennsylvania varies widely, and they hide this information and force customers to participate in a sales call before disclosing it, which is sneaky. So to make sure you’re not paying too much for Pennsylvania PEO services, I chose to rate each company according to its prices.
Factor 3: Ease of Sign-Up
Another important rating factor I considered was how easy it is to sign up for services.
Some PEO companies in Pennsylvania require you to spend weeks searching for obscure documents and bits of information that are ultimately unnecessary for the onboarding process. Others gather the majority of your business information from government agencies, greatly reducing your workload.
To make sure you don’t end up with a Pennsylvania PEO that wastes your time during the sign-up process, I evaluated each company’s sign-up process and rated it according to how automated and seamless its onboarding process is.
Factor 4: Ease of Use
The fourth rating factor I considered was how easy each Pennsylvania PEO’s system is to use.
When reviewing the systems of these Pennsylvania PEO companies, it was pretty obvious that some companies spent untold millions on their systems and prioritized automation and customer experience. Meanwhile, other Pennsylvania PEO companies simply tack on new features to complicated and confusing legacy systems, then write giant manuals attempting to explain their nightmarish navigation systems.
Of course, you want to partner with a Pennsylvania PEO company that has a simple, easy-to-use system, rather than a clunky, outdated system. So, I chose to rate each Pennsylvania PEO company based on how easy its system is to use.
Factor 5: Customer Service
No matter how much time or money a Pennsylvania PEO company puts into creating an easy-to-use system, you’ll inevitably run across a problem or have a question. It’s during these instances that a Pennsylvania PEO company’s customer service quality is crucial.
Some Pennsylvania PEOs provide customer service departments that will leave you on hold for hours until you’re eventually connected to an under-trained, bored college student that can’t answer your questions or solve your problem but promises to escalate your problem to management (which never happens). Then there are other Pennsylvania PEOs that quickly answer your call and solve your problem in a matter of minutes, allowing you to get on with your day.
The Best PEO for Your Business
Though Vensure is a great choice for most Pennsylvania businesses, I can’t make a proper recommendation for your business until I know more about it and your needs.
Some of the information required to make a customized recommendation includes the size of your company, how many employees you have, your industry, the benefits you want to offer, and more. And before I have this information, it’s impossible for me to make a recommendation.
If you’d like a free personalized recommendation for your business, as well as a free business analysis to tell you more about your needs and circumstances, enter your information below.
Once you’ve submitted your information, I’ll contact you within 24 hours with your free business analysis and customized PEO recommendation.
While you’re here learning about vital services to establish your business, it’s a good time to learn about registered agents, as well. For more information about what a registered agent can do for you, read my article about the 12 best Pennsylvania registered agents.
If you’re still learning how to start a business and want more information, check out my article How to Start a Pennsylvania LLC.
Frequently Asked Questions
How much does it cost to use a PEO?
The price of a PEO can vary widely depending on a number of different factors. This can include the PEO you choose, the services you use, the employee benefits you offer, and the number of employees you have. But on average, $1,000–$2,000 per employee per month is a good base number to start with.
How does a PEO charge?
There are two different fee structures used by PEO service providers: flat fee or percentage of payroll.
A flat fee structure charges you a set amount per employee. This is a good option for any business that requires a high level of certainty around their monthly billing.
A percentage of payroll structure is where the PEO charges you a percentage of the wages you pay your employees per month. This is a good option for employers in low-wage industries.
How long does it take to get set up with a PEO?
The setup process for any small business with PEO service providers takes time. They need lots of paperwork from your end and then need to file plenty more with government authorities to get you up and running.
This process can take anywhere between three and six weeks but on average, it usually takes four weeks.
Does it cost to change PEOs?
There are no specific exit fees associated with any of the PEOs we’ve recommended in this article, but due to the extensive setup process, every PEO charges a setup fee. This means that if you decide to leave your PEO for a new PEO, you won’t be charged anything to leave but you will have to pay the setup fee with the new PEO.