Table of Contents

Payroll Module Interface

Greg Hatfield Updated by Greg Hatfield

Following is a description of common user interface items found in form and worksheet modules.

File Two common File menus can be found. Both are described below.


  • New Payee - Clears the existing data and allows input of a new employee/recipient.
  • Next Payee - Employee/recipients are ordered according to the Client Folder. This causes the NEXT record in the list to be displayed.
  • Prev Payee - The previous employee/recipient in the list will be displayed.
  • First Payee - Displays the first entry in the list.
  • Last Payee - Displays the last entry in the list.
  • NOTE: The toolbar contains a dropdown list of Employee/Recipients. On either side of the dropdown list are navigation arrows which perform the NEXT, PREVIOUS, FIRST, and LAST functions described above.
  • Save/Update List - Causes entries of new employees/recipients to appear in the dropdown list without having to exit the input screen. New entries will automatically appear in the Employee/Recipient List when the data entry form is exited.
  • Close - Exits to the Employee/Recipient List.


  • New File - Clears existing data and fills in any default values. This does NOT map the client information.
  • Open File - Load the Data List screen for loading a saved file. Selecting <New File> from the list DOES map the client information as well as fill in any default values.
  • Save File - Saves the file or loads the Data List screen if it is a new file.
  • Save File As - Loads the Data List screen to allow a different description to be used. Use this to save data to more than one file.
  • Delete File - Loads the Data List screen to allow deletion of files.
  • Print - Loads the Print dialog for printing. The user may select printers, copies, or pages to print. Some modules have more than one print option in the menu.
  • Close - Closes the current window. If only one window is open this is the same as Close All.
  • Close All - Closes all windows in the module. If data needs to be saved the user is prompted.

Some modules or screens have custom FILE menus. This is usually the case if the screen information is saved or loaded from a database or multiple files (i.e. Representative Data Screen in Form 2848)


  • Auto Calculate - Toggles auto calculation mode on/off. With this ON (default) the module recalculates after each field is changed and the cursor moves to the next field.
  • Update Calculations - If Auto Calculate is turned off, then the user must select this to have the module recalculated.
  • Field Format - Allows switching between SSN, FEIN, and APPLIED FOR formats on certain fields.
  • Map Client - Copies client information into appropriate fields of the module.
  • Scroll Bars - Default set in Configuration Options. Toggles display of scroll bars to be used in moving the display screen for viewing. NOTE: The user may always move the display by pressing and holding the mouse button on an area other than an input field. The mouse cursor will change to a multi-headed arrow. Hold the mouse and move it to move the form. Release the mouse to resume normal operation.
  • Help Bar - Default set in Configuration Options. Toggles display of the Help panel at the bottom of the screen. This displays help for the current input field. NOTE: The same help message is displayed when the user presses <F2>.
  • Tool Bar - Default set in Configuration Options. Toggles display of the tool bar. The tool bar contains buttons for several menu selections (New File, Open File, Save File, Print, Zoom, Calculate and Map Client). In addition the tool bar contains a dropdown list of Employers/Payers (on Client Forms) or Employee/Recipients (on Employee/Recipient entry screens) allowing the user to select the current Employer or Employee after the module has been loaded.
  • Run Calculator - Loads the Windows Calculator program, if it is found in the Windows directory.


  • Cascade - Cascades the loaded screens.
  • Tile - Tiles the loaded screens.
  • Window List - Allows the user to choose from the currently loaded screens.
  • Help - Shows several help options, including <F1> to see the current module description. The module description often explains the usage of the form or worksheet.

Other Menu Items

Most modules have custom menu items that allow moving between related forms, moving to the next or previous page of multipage modules, and performing special operations. The user should view the menu to see the available options in each module. Common among payroll form menus is the option to complete the form by importing data that was entered into the 941 Payroll Data Employee List.

The Display

The worksheet or form consists of several input fields (boxes) on the screen requiring input from the user. Some fields are formatted (phone, SSN, FEIN, ZIP, date, etc.) and allow only certain input (numeric, X only, Y or N, etc.). Some fields formatted as SSN or FEIN allow switching between formats (see Field Format above). Field colors are set in the Configuration Options. Input fields are fields the user enters data into. Calculation fields are fields the program fills in after doing some calculations. The user only has access to the calculation fields if Auto Calculation mode is turned off. Disabled fields are fields that the program has made off limits to further input, usually in response to some entry the user has made.

The user moves to the next field by pressing <ENTER>, <TAB> or the Down Arrow. Use <SHIFT>+<ENTER>, <SHIFT>+<TAB>, or the Up Arrow to move to the previous field. When fields appear in columns, often the arrows will move up and down the column when <ENTER> and <TAB> move across the columns. At any time the user may click a field with the mouse to move to that field. When the field is changed the program checks the validity of the entry and displays an appropriate message, if necessary, for the user to change the entry. The program also recalculates the module when the field is changed if Auto Calculation mode is on.

Some modules display Buttons on the form or worksheet to perform special operations such as access a detail screen for a particular field.

How did we do?

Payroll Label/Envelope Maker

Payroll Module Library