Being an entrepreneur, you become a Jack of all trades as you juggle several responsibilities in your business. This is especially true if you own a small business or run a startup with just a handful of employees.
This can be a good thing. As the leader of the company, you should be aware of the ins and outs of your production, sales, accounting, purchasing, customer service and other aspects of the business.
However, there are certain business functions that require expertise like accounting and finance. Business owners without such background would definitely need help, maybe not now but soon enough.
Besides, as the entrepreneur behind the product or service or the one with the vision for the business, you are needed more in managing the entire operations on a daily basis than just focusing on tracking the income and spending.
Your business would benefit more if you spend most of your time running it and leading it to growth, and leave the accounting to a software that can deliver what you need to support your company.
Why go for an accounting software?
As you decide whether or not you need an accounting software right now, here are some guides to help you:
Easy to use
Accounting systems tend to be too complex especially for small businesses. So if your current set up seems complicated and it takes more time to understand it than to input the numbers and track the company’s finances, it is time to find one suitable to small businesses. An accounting software must be user-friendly and should simplify the process, not make things difficult for you and your staff.
Simplified business processes
This brings us to the next factor, also a crucial consideration as you evaluate the company’s needs. If your objective is to improve business efficiency, an accounting software can streamline operations so that your everyday transactions – from accounts receivable and payables to cost center accounting, job costing to timesheets, sales and purchase orders to inventory management, etc. – are all recorded in a centralized database. This also means you can easily generate reports and access financial data to get a view of the business’ overall performance.
Reliability and accessibility
If the financial reports don’t get to you when you need them or you have doubts about the accuracy of your data, you need an accounting software. Because everything is automated, your financial information are organized and it greatly lessens human error. You get access not only to current transactions but also to historical data, which can be used to generate reports that can aid decision-making to expand the business.
Support business growth
Staring a small venture requires a lot of time and effort from the business owner. At this point, you already need the help of an accounting software to keep your financials organized and reports ready to present to your investors. But if you have managed to launch the business without it, a growing company would be handling more transactions and processes are no longer as simple as they were in the beginning. An accounting software becomes essential in tracking the company’s performance and submitting the necessary tax filings.
If you are struggling with your tax returns and other business documents, an accounting software can do all the work for you. With just a few clicks, automatically generate your quarterly and annual tax submissions since all your financial records are intact and managed through the software. These features usually come with the accounting software.
What should be in your accounting software
Now, if you’re convinced an accounting software is what you need, here are some features to watch for in choosing the right one for your company:
By automatically recording all bookkeeping and other transactions, you capture everything that’s going on and track all financial information.
Superior audit trail
To maintain the integrity and accuracy of your financial data, your accounting software should be able to tell you who accessed the information and if any changes were made, as well as help you spot errors.
To give your business a professional feel, create and send cost estimates or sales invoices with your company logo and payment details using the accounting software’s built-in forms that you can personalize.
Tax submission and report generator
Profit and loss statements, tax returns and other reports and government filings should be simple to generate using an accounting software. But beyond these, choose a software that allows you to customize reports to help you track strategic campaigns and certain aspects of the business.
Flexibility and mobility
Nowadays, accounting tools should be accessible anytime, anywhere. So if you are on the way to meetings or while abroad, you should be able to access the data through your smartphone or tablet.
Recommended accounting software
To give you an idea of what’s out there, here are some intuitive accounting software that pack in the features but fit what small business owners need.
Used by home-based businesses to large companies that employ hundreds, it handles simple to complex data to improve management and help decision-making. It can tell you which business units are earning or losing, who are slow paying customers or those with outstanding balance, etc.
It manages accounting, invoice and inventory for small and medium enterprises, from home-based businesses to companies with several branches. It simplifies invoicing and simultaneously tracks transactions to get paid fast, tells what’s in stock and manages inventory to optimal levels, deals in multiple currencies and automatically generates tax submissions, among others.