Now, Businesses of all sizes use accounting software to track their revenue, sales forecasting and inventory management. Here's how to choose the best accounting software to serve the needs of your business.
In past, bookkeeping for a company used to be a paper-based process, it involved having a ledger, many columns and a pen for recording essential financial information for a company. During the digital era, a variety of small business accounting software programs are available in the market even for the small businesses. Not only can accounting software help you minimize human errors, but it can help you gain those insights into the company which you can not see in paper form–for example generating sales forecasting for the next quarter, finding out which items are stocked in excess, and identifying your least profitable service.
Finding the best accounting software can be a challenge for your business with a wide range of accounting software and online application packages available in the market. Before picking a business accounting software program, you need to understand some of the basics of business accounting, take a good look at your business and its accounting needs, and evaluate the products currently available.
With so many options available, Consider the following factors to find the software that best suits your business needs.
Cloud-based or On-premises
No wonder Cloud Computing has become so much popular, as it offers new flexibility to businesses, from saving time and money to enhancing agility. Cloud Computing offers new flexibility for enterprises. On the other hand, on-premises software – installed on a company's own servers and behind its firewall – has long been the only offer for organizations and can continue to meet your business needs adequately. In addition, on-site applications are reliable and secure and enable companies to maintain a control level often not possible for the cloud. But the decision makers agree that they will need to leverage new cloud and SaaS applications in addition to their on-premises and legacy systems to achieve their business goals.
Data security primarily aims at protecting the data collected, stored, created, received or transmitted by an organization. Compliance is also a key issue. Which device, technology or process is used for managing, storing or collecting data does not matter, it has to be protected. Data violations can lead to litigation and enormous fines, not to mention damage to the reputation of an organization. It is today more important than ever to protect data from security threats.
Make a list of essential functionalities in accounting software that you absolutely require. Some functionalities like creating invoices, tracking expenses, managing inventory, creating purchase orders, recording inventory purchases, creating and manage taxes, managing list of customers & vendors, viewing account payables & receivables and viewing financial statements need to be part of a good accounting package. It will be good to have features like multi-currency transactions support, manage employees and process payroll option and access control.
Most business owners have no accounting background. Even if you have a dedicated accountant who is using the application, you should be in a position to log in and browse things as an owner. It should also be easy to learn the software for your employees. ⠀Putting money for training a bunch of employees should be avoided.
It becomes difficult to operate for your team if the software is full of every possible feature that you can imagine. Therefore, go to software that has a simple user interface and does not have unnecessary features. The clean interface allows you to concentrate on important tasks and reduces the learning curve.
Many companies make a mistake by purchasing an app that fits their needs when buying it. When their business begins to expand, the accounting software fails to fulfil their expanding needs and business owners have to move to different software. It could be painful to migrate data from an existing system to new software.
Choose an accounting program that can measure up to the needs of your company. Some software only offers one version of the product and some have progressive versions according to the type or size of the business. Go for software with an entry-level version and a version that may not be needed now, but will definitely be necessary for the future.
Support & Maintenance
That's most important but most ignored when selecting software for accounting. Regardless of how good or easy the software is, at some point, you will need support. Your entire investment will go in vain if you have nobody to talk to when you are stuck. Due to lack of support, product costs you cheaper than the product having support. So, it is needed for you to select accounting software having good customer support.
Regardless of which business accounting software you choose, remember that you are not committed to it for life because most software makes conversion possible. The decision should nevertheless not be taken lightly. You definitely don't want to commit and start spending time on one application to find out just a few months later that you must switch to another application.
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