Published on: March 19, 2019
in: Company News
Accounting and financial software isn’t just for big businesses. It’s for all companies, including small businesses. The SBA classifies a small business as one with fewer than 500 employees, which means that the majority of companies you deal with daily meet the definition of a small business.
Consider all of the ways that technology enhances a small business. The local hair salon may use technology to send reminder text messages to its customers about their appointments. The ice cream parlor accepts credit cards swiped at the table from portable tablets. Small businesses use a wide range of technology every day to process payments, manage customer interactions, and handle appointments. It’s not a great leap to assume that these businesses would benefit from moving from paper or spreadsheet-based accounting to accounting and financial software.
Types of Accounting and Financial Software for Small Businesses
Small businesses handle their accounting in different ways. Some prefer to use a local accountant to process and manage their monthly accounts and annual tax return, but this is an expense that’s easily saved with the right accounting and financial software.
Accounting and financial software for your business enable you to:
- Manage the general ledger, balance sheet, and other critical financial reports
- Track and monitor customer payments and invoicing
- Budget your income and expenses
- Make future income predictions based on history
- Analyze receivables and follow up on outstanding invoices
- Monitor expenses, such as credit card charges
- Update bank balances and other information
- Run payroll reports and handle payroll and tax paperwork
- Create reports that help you understand your company’s cash flow
One type of accounting and financial software to look at is enterprise resource planning software or an ERP for short. A basic ERP package differs from a plain accounting software package in that ERP has an expanded ability to track assets and HR. For example, an ERP system can track tangible and intangible assets, performance capabilities, product life cycles, and more. A basic accounting and financial software package cannot handle these tasks; it offers basic accounting, banking, and invoicing, but falls short with added capabilities such as customer management and product life cycle tracking.
Adding Accounting and Financial Software – Considerations
As you review the many options for accounting and financial management, consider the following questions. The answers as they apply to your business can guide your final selection.
- What is the biggest problem or need that your business has concerning its accounting and financial management?
- Could you benefit from the additional functionality of customer relationship management, human resources management, warehouse, and distribution updates and similar items? If you need accounting and financial data, and accounting software package may be right for you. If you could benefit from additional packages such as HR and CRM, then look into ERP systems such as Sage ERP which offers many modules that can easily be added to the underlying accounting and financial software package to build out a system that meets your needs.
- How much can you spend now for the upgrade? Do you want to spread that cost out over months, years of product use? Do you mind paying more now without paying a monthly fee or would you prefer to pay per month and see how it goes? Different software packages offer different payment options. Some ERP systems, such as Acumatica, provide a monthly payment and varying payment levels based on usage. Others feature a price for a base package and additional costs for upgrades. Still, others base their license on seats or number of people accessing the system. Each has pros and cons
- Do you have onsite IT personnel? Systems must be maintained. This includes updates and upgrades, security checks, and backups. If you don’t have anyone on staff to handle such tasks, a cloud-based system may be a better choice since cloud systems typically include backups, security, and updates as part of their package.
Every business starts small. Like an infant, it grows, until finally one day it matures into a fully functioning, self-supporting entity. As your business grows, make sure that you update your software. Like an adult still trying to wear baby shoes, the original accounting package you used back in your company’s infancy may no longer fit. It may be time for an upgrade.
If you’re ready to find your new software, let’s talk. Please contact Mindover Software today at 512-990-3994.