HR Software

Paycom vs Paycor vs Paylocity

February 15, 2021
Brett Ungashick

It can be hard to differentiate between different HRIS platforms, especially when many have a similar name. This article compares three of the most popular mid-market solutions: Paycom, Paycor and Paylocity.

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If you work in HR at a mid-market company (50-500 employees), chances are you have received sales outreach from a variety of different HRIS providers.

With everything else going on in your day, you oftentimes don't have the chance to really learn about what each of these solutions can offer, and how they differ.

Learn More: Download a Free Vendor Report Comparing Paycom, Paycor and Paylocity including pricing, pros/cons and user reviews

Adding to that confusion is the fact that some of the most well-known vendors in the mid-market space have very similar company names. As someone once put it, "In the mid-market, your options are Fifty Shades of Pay."

To save you the time of researching, demoing and being sold to, we wanted to provide a quick comparison of the three most prominent platforms in the mid-market: Paycom, Paycor and Paylocity.


  • Founded in 1998
  • Headquarters in Oklahoma City, OK
  • ~19,000 customers
  • ~3,500 employees


  • Founded in 1990
  • Headquarters in Cincinnati, OH
  • ~40,000 customers
  • ~2,000 employees


  • Founded in 1997
  • Headquarters in Schaumburg, IL
  • ~20,000 customers
  • ~3,100 employees

Best Front-End Interface

Paylocity. In early 2020, Paylocity went through an entire brand overhaul. Not only did they update their logo and website, but they gave their entire HRIS a face lift. Users have reported that the simplified user interface is easier to navigate, more straightforward and provides a more 'modern' feel that employees have grown accustomed to in their private apps.

Best Back-End Capabilities

Paycom. When it comes to automating processes and cutting down on manual re-entry, Paycom stands out. While the other two vendors have grown their product via a combination of internal development and external acquisitions / white-labeling, Paycom has built every module in-house on a single database. With data automatically flowing throughout the system, admins can cut down on the tedious and error-prone tasks of manual re-entering information.

Best for Recruiting

Paycor. Most HRIS companies started off as payroll companies and, over the years, added more HR and talent management functionality. Due to this evolutionary process, most of the recruiting tools that are offered by HRIS platforms were built more recently and don't receive the same level of innovation and engineering resources as other parts of the platform. In general, most recruiting tools you find in an HRIS will meet basic needs but won't have the bells and whistles of standalone ATS/Onboarding tools. The exception to this rule is Paycor, who acquired an ATS company called Newton, in 2015. This acquisition continues to give Paycor a leg up for companies with major recruitment needs.

Best for Core HR

Paycom. When it comes to Core HR (payroll / time / benefits), the best software is the one that can automate data transfer, create continuous, real-time calculations and avert errors before they happen. Paycom's single database architecture is a huge advantage in this area. An honorable mention to Paylocity who gets the strongest reviews for their tax filing support.

Most Responsive Support

Paycor. Software companies all face the same constraints when it comes to building out their teams. Do you invest in the largest sales team, the largest software development team or the largest support team? In the past year, Paycor has decided to make support their number one investment, as they've grown their main customer support office in Fort Collins, CO significantly. Many clients have recently reported positive satisfaction with the availability of direct support and the speed in which tickets are responded to

Most Scalable

Paycom. While all three companies have a strong presence in the mid-market (50-500 employees), Paycom is the solution that has the strongest track record of up-market success. Paycom has about twice the number of enterprise clients as Paylocity and, in recent years, more and more of their customers are in the 500+ employee space.

Easiest to Implement

Paycor. Smooth implementations oftentimes go hand-in-hand with quality support and Paycor's large investment in customer support has paid dividends in the speed and effectiveness of their implementations. Paylocity can also be implemented fairly quickly. And Paycom provides the most on-site support during implementation.

Blog: How Long Does It Take to Implement a New HRIS

Most Cost-Effective

Paylocity. From a cost standpoint, all three providers tend to fall into a similar band. At year's end, Paylocity's pricing often is the lowest, since many of their services are included in the annual fees. Paycom's fees can climb due to the a la carte nature of their services. Paycor often fits in between the two. Although variance is to be expected with quotes depending on the services needed.

Request a Pricing Comparison of Paycom, Paycor and Paylocity

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Brett Ungashick
Brett is the founder of OutSail. He spent the early part of his career selling HR software before switching sides and going to work for the people buying the software.

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