Is your accounting software doing its job?

April 27th, 2013


Is your accounting software really doing its job?

Is it freeing up time to concentrate on what matters most…..building your business?

Is it reducing the bill from your accountant?

Small business owners need to take a more proactive role in making sure that their accounting software is the cheapest and most appropriate for their business rather than just relying on the opinion of their accountant or business associates.

So what should you be considering when choosing your accounting software?

1.  Are you tech savvy?  Then making use of the cloud could be a very smart move.  There are a number of organisations that offer cloud accounting solutions.  These online accounting packages allow your bank transactions to be fed straight into your software.  You can set up the system to memorise transactions so that they are automatically pre-coded under the income or expense they relate to.  There are so many amazing benefits to utilising the cloud, and best of all, the cost can be much cheaper for larger organisations that needed multiple licenses under the traditional accounting software.   

 2.  If you are not tech savvy then traditional desktop accounting software may be more practical.  There are so many options to choose from when deciding on desktop software that the task can become somewhat daunting.  Probably the most important factor to consider is the size of your organisation and the extent of your bookkeeping knowledge. 

If your business is more of a home based business such as an online shop or website and you are not making a lot of profit, then consider a more basic software package.  For example Cash Flow Manager is an electronic version of your old fashioned cash book.  It is simple to use, prints GST reports and costs around $200.  

For a larger organisation, monthly or quarterly health checks of your business are crucial.  You will probably need a software package that is a little more advanced so you can print some more complex reports to analyse your profit. Accounting systems such as MYOB or Quicken will allow you to perform these checks and keep your business on track. 

3.  Beware that if you are using a software program that you are finding too complex then you are probably costing yourself more money in accounting fees than what you need to pay.  Come tax time, unbalanced and messy reports will lead to accountants spending more time on your job.  Likewise, using a software program that is too basic will lead to phone calls back and forth between you and your accountant for extra information.  Phone calls such as these can quickly send you’re accounting fees sky rocketing.  If your accountant is tech savvy and up with the latest developments then they are probably making the most of the cloud within their accounting practice.  In which case you could potentially decrease your accounting fees by jumping on board and embracing the cloud too.

To sum up, you really need to shop around and see what is out there before you make a decision on your accounting software.  

Make sure you have an accountant that you trust who is prepared to sit down and discuss different options rather than just recommending the software system that works best for their firm.  Some accounting firms tend to lean toward one particular software package that they are familiar with.  The staff within their office are usually well trained and up to date with the software.  Hence this is the only software they will recommend to their clients regardless of the client’s size or the client’s needs.  

By taking more ownership of your accounting software decisions you can sleep easy knowing you are making the best choices for your business and freeing up time to do what matters most – build a profitable enterprise.

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