Keka Review 2024: Does it Beat Other HR and Payroll Software?

May 25th 2024

Startup founders, HRs and finance persons should focus on product development and growth in the early days. But when it is the prime time to focus on business growth, you end up spending your valuable time on repetitive activities like processing payrolls, managing employee leave records on spreadsheets, and manually approving contractor invoices. The result? Burnout!

And this is the time when you should consider investing in simplifying your HR operations.

Keka is HR and Payroll software that automates time-consuming HR operations. It is known for its smart features covering payroll management system, HRMS platform, leave management system and more.

But is Keka ideal for your company? What are the existing Keka users saying about its performance?

Settle down, as we will present a detailed Keka review explaining its pros and cons, along with a five Keka alternatives to explore before making a purchase. Let’s get started.

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craze signup
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TL;DR

  • Keka is an HRMS platform for growing enterprises and can accommodate thousands of employees.

  • The core features of Keka are - HR software to automate day-to-day HR operations, Payroll software and Time & Attendance software within a single dashboard.

  • Keka is expensive for growing businesses with the base plan, Foundation (up to 100 people) starting at ₹6,999 per month and offers limited features. It also has setup and implementation fees.

  • According to the review of Keka users, the user interface has design improvement opportunities, and there are syncing issues between payroll and attendance solutions.

  • There is a list of Keka alternatives, including Craze, with feature differences and pricing comparison.

What is Keka?

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keka hr
keka hr
keka hr

In this Keka review article, the three core products that we will be assessing are:

  • Payroll software: Automatically processes payroll according to the Indian labour laws and tax deduction rules.

  • Modern HR: Custom employee workflows to experience streamlined employee engagement and analytics.

  • Time and attendance: A time-tracking application that tracks leaves and attendances according to the Indian standard leave policy.

Comprehensive Review of Keka Features 

Time to assess the performances of each of the above Keka products and break down the essential features:

Keka Payroll Software 

keka review payroll
keka review payroll
keka review payroll

All image via Keka.

Keka allows companies to deploy range-based salary structures to simplify the automation process. You need to select a salary range for the employees, and the individual salary elements like HRA, conveyance, etc., are configurable separately.  

  • Keka simplifies salary planning for new employees or salary revision for existing employees to provide HR professionals with complete control over statutory compliances. The built-in compliance management tool automatically calculates professional tax, TDS, and Form 24Q generation.   

  • You get a detailed preview of the salaries, deductions, payable days and other critical parameters to make changes at a micro-level before processing the final payroll. 

  • It has built-in time-tracking software that helps HR calculate payrolls accurately.

  • The integrated expense management platform auto-configures expense payouts before releasing the salaries. 

  • Keka integrates with multiple accounting and finance solutions, like Tally, and provides an intuitive payroll tracking dashboard to track compensations and create budgets for the upcoming quarter.

  • Integrate with banks, recruitment CRMs, and biometric systems to develop custom workflows, add simple levels like approvals, escalations, and monitoring, and automate time-consuming manual tasks to improve overall productivity.  

Features and Availability

Features

Error-free, timely payroll processing

Tax compliance and filing

Multiple payment options and direct deposits

Multi-currency support

Mobile Accessibility

Benefits and deduction management 

Customised payroll reports

Confidentiality of secured employee data

Employee expense management

Employee expense
management

Audit and reconciliation tool

Employee self-service portal 

Availability

Keka Modern HR Software 

keka review hr software
keka review hr software
keka review hr software
  • Keka’s HR workflows cover hiring, onboarding, internal movements, and probation confirmation. It speeds up actions like peer feedback, onboarding tasks, and approvals through both web and mobile applications.  

  • The employee self-service (ESS) portal has individual employee profiles, single sign-on access, and a dashboard to apply for and track leaves.  

  • It digitises and stores all documents (such as ID proofs, educational certificates, payslips, appreciation letters, etc.) within a centralised database so employees and managers access, track and download their required documents whenever they need them.  

  • Keka’s built-in helpdesk ensures that employees get help in time.

  • It provides employees an easy way to submit requests, and assign HR, payroll and IT owners.

Features and Availability

Features

Employee self-service portal (ESS) 

Employee Performance Management System

Built-in learning and development centre

HR metrics dashboard 

Mobile Accessibility

Integration with CRM and other tools

Workflow automation

Confidentiality of secured employee data

Collaboration and engagement with co-workers

Availability

Keka Time and Attendance Software

keka review time tracking
keka review time tracking
keka review time tracking
  • Flexible leave policies appropriate for remote and hybrid employees. Manage different leave types like paid, unpaid, sick, and statutory leaves in the same platform and plan your leaves based on cultural preferences. 

  • It integrates with biometric devices to keep your workplace safe from unauthentic access attempts. 

  • Automated shift rotation with 24/7 coverage so you can manage employees working in multiple shifts on a daily, weekly or monthly basis. 

Features and Availability

Features

Compliance with location-specific leave policy

Custom leave approval workflow

Team calendar and scheduling

Mobile accessibility

Leave-related notifications and reminders

Leave-related notifications
and reminders

Customised leave usage insights

Confidentiality of secured employee data

Confidentiality of secured
employee data

Leave related documents management

Leave dashboard and absence tracker

Employee self-service portal 

Multi-language support

Availability

Our Take on Keka’s Pricing: Does it Fit a Startup’s Budget?

Keka’s HR and Payroll platform comes with three distinct pricing plans:

Foundation

The Foundation Plan costs ₹6,999 per month for up to 100 employees, and to accommodate new employees, you will need to pay ₹60/month per additional employee.

This plan suits businesses starting their automation journeys and includes essential features like payroll automation with statutory compliance, employee self-service portal, and advanced leave management. Features like employee onboarding plus, custom notifications, and single sign-on are unavailable in this plan.

Strength

The Strength Plan costs ₹9,999 per month for up to 100 employees, and to accommodate new employees, you will need to pay ₹90/month per additional employee.

This plan suits organisations in the scaling phase, looking for advanced automation and employee engagement features. While features like employee onboarding and exit surveys, custom notifications, custom report builders, attendance system, etc., are available in this plan, you won’t get access to features like performance review, OKR management, skill matrix, etc. 

Growth

The Growth Plan costs ₹13,999 per month for up to 100 employees, and to accommodate new employees, you will need to pay ₹130/month per additional employee.

Targeted toward organisations in the growth phase, this plan offers all features in the Strength plan, along with employee surveys, 1:1 meetings, performance reviews, OKRs, etc.  

Is Keka pricing apt for growing businesses?

Keka offers many helpful features in its HR automation and payroll products. But here’s the thing: this HRMS platform might not suit startups and small businesses. Here’s why: 

  • Fewer employees don’t mean fewer feature requirements. Keka’s Foundation Plan gives access to the basic feature only and doesn’t cover useful features, employee onboarding and exit workflows, Self-attendance, timesheets, and advanced roles and permissions etc. This means a startup might need to opt for more exclusive plans like Strength or Growth along with paying setup fees to access the advanced features, even though they have fewer employees.

  • Keka has a minimum commitment user policy, which might differ for some organisations. According to this policy, if you avail yourself of a discount, price negotiation, or any additional features not part of your plan, you commit to Keka the number of employees, minimum billing period, or both. Even though your license fee is described as “per employee per month”, the subscription charges will be charged for the minimum committed billing period. And you cannot modify or revise these commitments throughout the term of the plan. 

A more suitable pricing structure for startups and growing businesses would be per-employee-per-month pricing. This would mean startups accessing all advanced features while paying for the exact number of employees available in their teams. 

We recommend - Craze for startups and small businesses. Craze provides you access to all advanced features without any lock-ins, no setup fees, and no minimum commitments and charges on a per-employee basis.

craze payroll
craze payroll
craze payroll

Here are the available Craze pricing plans:

  • Core: ₹30 per person per month. This plan includes all advanced HR features like employee details, reporting structure, roles and permissions, organised document storage and workflows, employee onboarding, and offboard capabilities.

  • Payroll: ₹50 per person per month. It includes all advanced payroll features like one-click salary disbursements, automated tax reports and reimbursements, contractor payments, super fast support, and auto-syncs with leave and attendance.

  • Leaves and Time & Attendance: ₹30 per person per month with advanced leaves, time and attendance management system like tracking and managing leaves and attendance, timesheets and auto-syncs with payroll in real-time.

The best part? No feature gatekeeping, no minimum user commitments and pay what you use, with super fast support.

craze leave management system
craze leave management system
craze leave management system

User Feedback: Are Keka Users Happy with this Software? 

Based on our analysis of user feedback across popular review platforms like G2, Capterra, GetApp and Techjockey, here’s what the users say about Keka:

Benefits of Keka 

  • Simple and flexible HRMS platform with a narrow learning curve.

  • A responsive customer support team that guides the users whenever they face any challenges.

  • Easy payroll software to automate payroll operations, generate salary slips, Form16 and similar employee documents, one-click processing and management.

  • Automation of day-to-day HR tasks like attendance regularisation, leave approval, birthday/anniversary reminders.

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keka review benefits 1
keka review benefits 1
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keka review benefits 2
keka review benefits 2

Reviews collected from Source 1 and Source 2 

Disadvantages of Keka 

  • Account sync issues where login and logout times often mismatch in the portal.

  • Payroll features like tax filing and investment plans are missing.

  • The performance system requires an update as it looks more like a performance management checklist than a performance assessment system. Additionally, you cannot download performance reviews in spreadsheet format.

  • Keka doesn’t have an internal file management system. This hinders the collaboration between teams and complicates internal file exchange.

  • Clumsy UI that looks populated with lots of elements. The web-based solution has a high loading time

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keka review bad

Reviews collected from Source 1, Source 2, Source 3, Source 4

Overall Verdict on Keka

Feature: Payroll Software

Pros: Easy to operate, one-click payroll processing and automated document generation.

Cons: Features like tax filing and investment planning for employees are missing.

Feature: Modern HR software

Pros: Flexible HRMS and easy-to-learn.

Cons: Clumsy UI, no internal file management system.

Feature: Time & Attendance software

Pros: Automated attendance regularisation, leave approval, birthday/anniversary reminders.

Cons: Frequent account syncing issues.

Final Verdict based on Keka Reviews

Based on our analysis of Keka and after reading through the reviews of existing Keka users, our final verdict is: 

Sign up for Keka if you have a team of 100+ people. If you don’t have budget restrictions and are looking for all the advanced features, opt for Keka’s Growth Plan, which costs ₹ 13,999 per month.

But if you have a team of 100 or less and are looking for a flexible HRMS platform that offers all significant HR, payroll, and leave management features at a reasonable cost and doesn’t have a minimum commitment policy, we suggest opting for a Keka alternative.

But what are these Keka alternatives? Find out in the next section. 

5 Keka Alternatives for Startups and Small Businesses

Craze

Craze is perfect for small and mid-sized business teams looking to automate their HR and payroll operations from end to end. This employee-friendly, super-efficient solution offers everything Keka offers without feature lock-ins, with far superior support.

Some of its significant features include centralised employee data and document management, built-in templates, auto-sync with payroll and leave dashboards, one-click, compliant payroll with tax deductions and effortless contractor payments. Craze supports custom salary structures for each employee. Additionally, Craze has a super-responsive support team that responds within minutes, and you get a direct resolution to your queries from their founding team.   

All of these are without paying a fixed charge or setup fees. Craze charges businesses on a per-user, per-month model, where you pay for each person you add to your team. If you have a team of 20 persons, there’s no point in spending a lump sum suitable for a team of 100, and Craze’s pricing plan is designed that way. 

craze signup
craze signup
craze signup

GreytHR

GreytHR has a free plan with limited features that accommodates startups with a maximum of 25 employees. It’s an ideal choice for medium and large-sized organisations.

Zoho

Zoho simplifies the migration from other HRMS platforms to Zoho. Additionally, there are multiple templates to speed up the payroll processing. 

RazorpayX Payroll

RazorpayX Payroll is an automated payroll and compliance product with error-free payroll processing. 

ZingHR

ZingHR has a built-in talent acquisition solution and regular HR features like automation, payroll processing and employee engagement.

Conclusion

Keka is a complete HRMS platform with advanced HR and payroll automation features. Large organisations with 100+ employees can use this platform to automate their HR workflows, process error-free payroll within seconds, and provide employees with a self-guided portal. 

However, Keka users complain about its clunky UI and syncing issues between payroll and attendance solutions. Additionally, Keka is expensive for startups and mid-size organisations as they must pay a minimum of ₹ 6,999 per month with limited features, irrespective of their team size.

Is Craze right for you? 

Here's the (short) sales pitch. We're biased, obviously, but we think Craze is the perfect Keka replacement if:

  • You are looking for a people operating system covering HR, Finance and IT use cases 

  • You want to access all advanced features without any feature-gating 

  • You value transparent, non-restrictive pricing 

  • You love fast support for issues and feature requests   

Here’s what Craze’s customers have to say👇

craze review
craze review
craze review

FAQs

What types & sizes of businesses benefit most from using Keka?

Keka is suitable for companies with over 100 employees. However, due to its pricing structure and limited features in lower-tier plans, there may be better choices for startups and small businesses.

Is immediate support available with Keka?

Keka has a responsive customer support team that guides users whenever they face challenges. Users have praised the quality of support they receive from Keka's team.

Does Keka include features for payroll and compliance management?

Keka's payroll software automates payroll processing according to Indian labour laws and tax deduction rules. It also ensures statutory compliance and generates necessary documents like salary slips and Form 16.

Is there a mobile app available for Keka?

Yes, Keka offers a mobile application that allows employees to access the platform's features, such as the employee self-service portal, on the go.

What third-party tools can be integrated with Keka?

For seamless payroll tracking and budget creation, Keka integrates with multiple accounting and finance solutions, including Quickbooks and Tally. It also supports integration with biometric devices for attendance management.

Sreyashi Chatterjee

Sreyashi Chatterjee is a SaaS content marketing consultant. When she is not writing or thinking about writing, she is watching Netflix or reading a thriller novel while sipping coffee.

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