“We were able to save the equivalent of a full-time hire by moving to PrimePay”
Debbie Richards
Director of Finance

Initial Challenges

  • An accounting employee retired, and the budget didn’t allow for a replacement to manually enter payroll data.
  • Preparing quarterly tax returns and W-2s took an excessive amount of time.
  • Limited access to provide W-2s to employees.
  • Complex and time-consuming to create reports.



  •  WE Inc. adopted PrimePay Payroll in 2016 to automate and streamline the W-2 process, payroll, reporting, and data entry.



  •  Saves finance and HR leaders’ time by reducing manual data entry and payroll processes.
  • Mitigates risk associated with manual entry and human error.
  • Allows for easy access to W-2s and quarterly reports as needed.
  • Automates reports used for workers’ compensation and other applications.
  • Provides continuity to the accounting department.

Automating Complex Payroll Processes Enables Nonprofit to Focus on Empowering the Underemployed

Vocational preparation and rehabilitation facility, WE Inc., streamlines payroll, automating returns and reporting, and brings continuity to the accounting department with PrimePay’s payroll.

Focusing on employment opportunities for all backgrounds and abilities

Whether someone has a disability or is struggling to re-enter society after prison, drug rehabilitation, or another issue, it can oftentimes be difficult to find gainful employment. Rejoining the workforce can be challenging, particularly when a person has gaps in their work history or no work history. For over 120 years, WE Inc. has enabled those with disabilities or barriers to achieve their vocational potential. This includes providing hands-on training and assistance to individuals who are trying to get back into the workforce.

Team members from non profit reviewing hr software dashboard.In the early 1900s, WE Inc. was a small group of Birmingham citizens helping those with vision impairments create products for sale. It is now a production facility that local businesses use to outsource tasks like assembly, mailing, and fulfillment. People of all backgrounds work sideby-side to learn essential job skills and soft skills to more easily transition to work.

Debbie Richards leads the finance department to ensure payroll, accounting, and reporting are executed correctly.

Simplifying payroll with a simple payroll technology

The important work at WE Inc. necessitated a complex payroll process that could manage a varying staff of up to one hundred employees. In previous years, it paid its clients based on productivity. A full-time employee would manually collect the number of pieces each employee completed, run the calculations, and enter the data for payroll.

When this employee decided to retire, the company was back to the drawing board. It didn’t have the budget to hire another full-time employee and Richards and her staff were already stretched thin. Richards knew they needed to rethink how they paid their employees and adopt a more sophisticated system to streamline the process.

“We would pay our employees based on the number of pieces they completed, which took a lot of manpower because you had to count their pieces,” says Richards. “When we decided to switch approaches, we decided to go with a third party for payroll.”

A new payroll system would ensure WE Inc. could focus on its core mission, not spend its limited resources wrangling spreadsheets, entering data, and searching for payroll data.

Providing continuity and support to the accounting team

Richards explored several solutions to her payroll dilemma, but the company she initially contacted was unresponsive. One day, her director received a recommendation from a friend to contact PrimePay.

Richards looked into it and determined that PrimePay might be able to fit WE Inc.’s needs. PrimePay was also responsive, something Richards appreciated after attempting to play phone tag with other providers. PrimePay payroll made it easy for WE Inc. to import W-2 data, run reports for workers’ compensation purposes, and automate quarterly returns and W-2s. Everything that WE Inc. needed for reporting was pulled into the system.

“Employees tend to lose their W-2s,” Richards explains. “PrimePay provides not only direct deposit for our employees but also easy access to W-2s, so we can pull them right up when they need them.”

By automating its payroll system, WE Inc. was able to provide continuity to the accounting department. Several employees were trained to run reports to gain insights without needing to dig through spreadsheets or convoluted file systems.

By outsourcing payroll calculations, reporting, and tax forms to PrimePay, WE Inc. has saved the equivalent of one full-time hire.

“We used to pay one person to do our data entry,” Richards says. “Since our payroll person retired and we moved to PrimePay, she’s become responsible for our Accounts Payable and our Accounts Receivable. We were able to save the equivalent of one fulltime hire by moving to PrimePay.”

From the time Richards first contacted PrimePay, they have always been responsive and helpful. Any time WE, Inc. has a question or issue, support is available.

Easily adding new hires for summer programs

In addition to providing a simpler day-to-day payroll system, PrimePay enables WE Inc. to scale for summer hires.

“During the summer, we hire a lot of students in a program called Job Exploration Training. They go out and work in different locations,” Richards explains. “We have teachers that go with them. They get job experience, such as working at the zoo or the thrift stores.”

In a typical month, WE Inc. has 40 to 60 employees in the system, but during their summer program, they nearly double their headcount for about six weeks. With PrimePay, summer program students can easily be added and removed in the system.

With streamlined payroll technology in place, Richards has one less task on her already full plate – and WE Inc. can focus on providing job training for those who need it. This means even more people can receive services, join the workforce, and lead productive, fulfilling lives.

Tired of wrangling spreadsheets and manually managing payroll? Contact us today and see how PrimePay can transform your operations.