For companies not using HR software, understanding costs is vital. Budget limits can deter software purchases. It’s tough to gauge return on investment without first investing. HR software transforms business operations. However, buying without knowing the benefits or costs is risky. HR software’s benefits surpass its costs, but what’s the price tag?

Key Features of HR Software

Different industries have unique business processes. Yet, some features are universal. HR software aids many human resource tasks: automating payroll, streamlining candidate sourcing, boosting employee engagement, and tracking personnel. It supports:

  • Job posting, applicant tracking, and onboarding.
  • Administering benefits and offering specific plans.
  • Shift scheduling.
  • Recording employee goals, appraisal documentation, goal tracking, and automated payroll compensation.
  • Online training for role-specific skills.
  • Reports on turnover, payroll costs, staffing, and Equal Opportunity Employment.

How Much Does HR Software Cost?

Cloud software pricing has evolved. Once expensive, it’s now affordable with varied payment options: annual fees or monthly instalments. The industry’s dynamic nature has made providers offer cost-effective solutions. Prices differ among vendors, but here’s a general pricing guide. This will help you determine the price range you can expect to pay for different pricing models.

Pay Per Employee/Per Month

Many vendors, such as Cezanne’s HR software, charge a monthly fee for each employee in the organisation, irrespective of whether they use the software or not. There can sometimes be a one-off implementation fee on top of this as well, but the cost per employee typically decreases as the total number of employees increases. The usual cost for this type of software plan ranges from as little as £1 to £10 per employee per month, depending on the vendor.

Pay Per User/Per Month

For this price plan, businesses are expected to pay a monthly fee for each administrative user of the software, rather than every employee in the company. The term ‘users’ can sometimes be used interchangeably with ‘all employees’ though, so be sure to check the terms and conditions when opting for this type of payment plan. As with the previous payment model, there is usually an implementation fee along with the monthly payment to set up this software. This type of software ranges from £5 to £20 per user per month.

One-Off Payments

For larger organisations, the one-time payment plan may be more suitable and requires the company to pay a larger sum upfront based on the specific features the company requires. This type of payment structure may be based on the size of the company and often comes with an annual support fee or add-ons for a more customised software solution. The price of this can range from £500 to the thousands, depending on the business size and needs.

Free Plans

If you’re on a tight budget, free HR software packages might be the right option for you. While they aren’t entirely free, they do offer some features without any cost. This makes them especially beneficial for small businesses and start-ups looking to harness the advantages of HR software without the associated high costs. Another avenue to explore is the free trials of paid products. By doing so, you can gauge how well the software integrates with your business operations.

Interestingly, studies reveal that businesses, regardless of their size, tend to have a consistent spend on HR software. On average, companies allocate about £5000 annually for this purpose. This figure encompasses additional costs such as customisation, training, and maintenance. A challenge many face is that vendors often keep their pricing under wraps, not making it publicly available. For those new to the world of HR software, this can make budgeting a bit of a hurdle. However, it’s worth noting that £5,000 is a ballpark figure that many industries typically set aside for their HR software needs each year.


Ultimately, the cost of HR software depends on the needs of the business and the size of the company. The amount a business is willing to allocate towards HR software will almost always align with the value the software can bring to the company. Weighing up the pros and cons of different vendors will help you determine the right solution for your business’s specific needs. It can be tempting to lowball your budget when trying to get HR software approved by decision-makers in your company, but it’s always a better option to be realistic and many companies are more affordable than one would expect initially. HR software nets a positive ROI in the majority of cases and can help to streamline the day-to-day processes of the business, from making tedious tasks such as approving holidays easier to making payroll and compliance more efficient.