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Payroll Manager



Accounting & Finance
Alameda, CA, USA
Posted on Saturday, November 5, 2022
The Company
Astra’s mission is to Improve Life on Earth from Space® by creating a healthier and more connected planet. Today, Astra offers one of the lowest cost-per-launch dedicated orbital launch services of any operational launch provider in the world, and one of the industry’s first flight-proven electric propulsion systems for satellites, Astra Spacecraft Engine™. Astra delivered its first commercial launch to low Earth orbit in 2021, making it the fastest company in history to reach this milestone, just five years after it was founded in 2016. Astra (NASDAQ: ASTR) was the first space launch company to be publicly traded on Nasdaq.
The Opportunity
The Astra Payroll Manager is responsible for paying our employees timely and accurately. You will lead our small and driven payroll team within the broader accounting and finance division. The Payroll Manager will help develop process improvements to maintain accuracy, quality, and efficiency of the payroll process. You will report to the Director of Stock Administration & Payroll.
Critical success factors for this role will include a highly collaborative work style, the ability to anticipate problems, proactively deal with difficult situations, and communicate appropriately with all levels of stakeholders.

How You'll Fulfill Your Mission

  • Process, review and validate semi-monthly multi-state payrolls (exempt & non-exempt), as well as off cycle payrolls for bonuses, stock transactions, and other payroll payments as needed
  • Review timesheets for accuracy and follow up with employees and managers to ensure timely timecard submissions
  • Perform prorated pay calculations for new hires and terminations ensuring compliance to regulatory requirements
  • Oversee GL changes to ensure all payroll-related systems and vendors remain current and are accurately coded
  • Prepare month-end reconciliations of payroll balance sheet accounts and assist with fluctuation analysis related to payroll activity
  • Understand proper taxation of employer and employee paid benefits and ensure proper processing through payroll (HSA, FSA, Medical, Dental, Vision, AD&D, Life insurance, Disability, 401(k), etc.)
  • Research and resolve questions from employees and managers related to payroll information such as time off, retroactive pay calculations, tax questions, and other changes
  • Reconcile W-2 to ensure accurate entry of all compensation transactions
  • Assist with Worker’s Compensation, 401(k), and SOX audits
  • Support annual audits and other cyclical internal audits
  • Build-out processes and systems that ensure the payroll operations scale in quality, seamless manner
  • Manage,‌ ‌mentor‌ ‌and‌ ‌coach‌ team members and peers as needed ‌
  • Collaborate with Payroll colleagues and other individuals to support quarterly forecast and annual budgetary analyses, and reporting needs
  • Perform other duties as assigned and participate in projects as assigned


  • 5+ years’ experience handling payroll in a multi-state environment
  • Experience using Workday is a must
  • Solid understanding of accounting fundamentals and payroll best practices
  • Proficient in MS Excel including utilization of VLOOKUP’s, pivot tables, and formulas
  • Excellent problem-solving skills; analytical mindset with good judgment
  • High level of attention to detail and accuracy
  • Strong written and oral communication skills, and effective interpersonal skills with different stakeholders and all levels of employees
  • Self-starter: ability to work and prioritize with little direction
  • Excellent organizational skills: ability to handle multiple priorities within deadlines is required
  • Ability to deal sensitively with confidential material
  • Bachelor’s degree in accounting, finance, or equivalent field of study

Desired Multipliers

  • FCP or CPP certification
  • Experience working in a fast-paced, ambiguous environment highly desired
  • Experience processing all types of stock transactions, and an understanding of the tax implications of each type (i.e., NQSO, ISO, RSU, and ESPP) is a plus
  • Experience using Microsoft Dynamics and/or OneSource Virtual highly preferred
ITAR Requirements: This position requires compliance with U.S. Government space technology trade restrictions, specifically the International Trafficking in Arms Regulations (ITAR), Export Administration Regulations (EAR) and additional regulations governing satellite, launch vehicle, missile, and other related technologies. All jobs restricted by these regulations will be contingent upon the applicant’s status as a documented U.S. Person or their ability to receive a trade license from the cognizant government agency; in addition to any required company background checks and in compliance with applicable U.S. and California laws. Similarly, positions requiring the ability to work on government contracts or a security clearance are also contingent upon the applicants ability to receive the appropriate clearance and be allowed to work on U.S. government contracts.
You do not need to match every listed expectation to apply for this position. Here at Astra, we know that diverse perspectives foster the innovation we need to be successful, and we are committed to building a team that encompasses a variety of backgrounds, experiences, and skills.
San Francisco Applicants: Astra will consider applicants with arrest and conviction records (criminal histories) in a manner consistent with the San Francisco Fair Chance Ordinance.