Software solutions are supposed to assist you in running your business. Getting the right one could be a real helping hand in your business. Making things fast, easy and giving you early warning before any trouble. But getting the wrong one can be a source of frustration, expenses, and a lot of disappointments. This is no different for an accounting software.
Not only will this software make your bookkeeping easier, it will also properly track all of your critical financial data from which you’ll be able to measure the health of your business. This is important for future growth and development and to help you make pertinent decisions about your business. We shall look at some easy steps on how to pick a good software, which will suit your need.
1. Consider both your needs and your accounting skills
Your best bet for finding the right accounting software is to look at how your business operates, and then take careful stock of the different types of software on the market. If your business makes several million of dollars a year, it will have very different accounting needs than one that makes less than $50,000.
You have a variety of options when it comes to accounting software products, including those designed specifically for small and medium-sized businesses. Consider checking out websites with listings and Directories for comparisons.
Depending on your industry, you might want to consider specialized software that is designed to help businesses in your niche. For example, there are applications customized for businesses in the manufacturing sector, for retailers and restaurants, as well as for many other types of commercial enterprises.
Doing your research is important, because the application you choose will directly impact how your revenue is managed. It is also important to consider that even though accounting software can make the task of keeping books easier, it still requires a certain amount of financial literacy. As sophisticated as an application may be, it is still only a tool. Those using the software must know what to do with it.
2. Keep your budget in mind
There is business accounting software available to suit all budgets. General applications for a broader user base may be downloaded free or bought off the shelf at a lower price. However, the more specialized the software is, the more expensive it gets, because the user base for specialized software is usually relatively small.
If you want something specific to your industry or customized for your company, you should be prepared to pay a premium. Consider the following, under cost;
- Installation setup and ongoing maintenance fees
- Initial and ongoing training via a software consultant or your bookkeeper and/or accountant
- Remember, if you decide on industry-specific software, this can be very
- expensive and you will need to factor the overall cost of such software into your budget.
- Consider your current computer hardware – will the software run properly on this
- hardware or will you need to upgrade?
3. Make a Need list for your business
Now that you have an initial software list and a budget in place, the next thing to do is define your business requirements. You need to list every feature your business needs in a software to enable it to function and grow. Some common features might include:
- Invoicing (sales and purchases)
- Purchase orders
- Estimates or quoting
- Comprehensive reporting (what sorts of reports do you need?)
- Contact database or light CRM
- GST tracking and BAS reporting
- Simple interface and user-friendly
- Other features that your business may require could include:
- Bank feeds
- Foreign currency
- Point of sale
- Ability to connect to other software i.e. Addons
- Multi-user capability
- Scalability (software grows with your business)
- Access on multiple devices i.e. mobile access
- Reliable support e.g. local consultants, email and/or telephone
- Audit trail (software keeps records of who did what and when)
4. Don’t go overboard with your Need list
Keep it simple and stay focused on your business’ needs otherwise you might end up purchasing software that has loads of extra features you will never use.
5. Match your Need list to software features
Okay, now you’re almost there. You are getting closer to making your final software choice. The last task is to look at the initial software list you made in steps one and two and match the features they offer to the list you created in step four.
Choose the software that provides all or most of the features on your list. Don’t forget to stay within your budget but also remember that cost should not be the only critical factor you take into account; it’s important to make a choice that will suit the needs of your business now and into the future.
6. Make the decision with the help of your accountant
Your accountant may prefer that you choose an application that is compatible with the ones He/she uses. Every business is different; your accountant is in the best position to offer an educated opinion about which one is best choice for your particular enterprise.
Your accountant may even be able to help you set up the software you choose. Whichever business accounting software you choose, remember that you aren’t committed to it for life, since most software allows for some form of conversion. Still, the decision shouldn’t be made lightly.
You definitely don’t want to make a commitment to one application and begin investing time into it, only to discover that you have to switch to another one just a few months later.
See what Accounting software solution can fit right into your business needs. If you have a Saas Accounting software you will like to promote?
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