Thinking about changing your accounting software? With year-end approaching, now is the time to do it

If you run your own business, the last thing you want is another thing to think about, but making sure you have the right accounting software is a necessity.

You don’t need the headache of number crunching, and if your accounting software isn’t providing you with what you need…that’s an issue.

That’s why you need to make sure you have the right accounting software for your business.

Here are some things to consider when choosing the right software for you…

Ensure the software system is compatible with the size of your business (including any plans for growth!)

If your business is small – i.e. sole trader or under five staff – it’s likely a small and nimble system like Quickbooks will suit your needs.

Systems like this one are ideal for businesses that don’t need much back end sophistication but only require capable and affordable system to do things like manage bills and expenses, pay your employees, sync your data and give you free support.

But if you have plans to scale your business, or you have more than five employees, you need to choose a system that is compatible with the requirements of a larger business.

Xero is a great one for small to medium enterprises. It provides you with easy-to-read reporting, simple bank reconciliation and easy expense claims. It’s also ideal for managing and paying employees.

Other options to consider include MYOB and Reckon – but you want to make sure legacy programs like these have the moveability and flexibility your business needs.

Large companies will require even more sophistication from their accounting software – systems that integrate with their other business management tools such as project management systems and CRMs.

Cloud-based software vs on-premises

Innovation in the tech space has created cloud computing, which has been readily adopted across all facets of service-based industries.

The biggest difference between cloud-based systems and on-premises systems is how they are accessed.

On-premises systems are just that – on premises – installed on your computer. Cloud solutions are accessed via the internet and are typically hosted by a third party vendor.

Cloud-based systems follow an on-demand service model i.e. ‘pay as you go’, whereas on-premises solutions are paid for upfront.

If you use a cloud-based system, you are able to change/upgrade/downgrade your product (and the costs involved) whenever you choose.

If you are using a traditional on-premises software system, the (very high) price you paid for that software disc becomes obsolete as soon as the software is upgraded or the size of your business changes.

If you’re expecting your business to grow, you don’t want to purchase a system that’s reliant on your data centre infrastructure.

Consider how the software will integrate with your business culture and lifestyle

This one is important and requires you think about how you run your business.

Do you travel a lot for work and need to manage your data from multiple locations? Do you want a system that manages everything? Do other people need to access your financials and customer details?

The beauty of cloud-based systems is that you can access them from anywhere, at any time, on any device.

They also provide you with multi-user access so key employees can access your financial data and customer details when needed.

With the technology available at our fingertips, cloud-based accounting systems really are the way to go, as they provide you with the flexibility you need to run your business effectively in today’s digital age.

Cloud-based systems provide you with an affordable system capable of growing with you, with the flexibility of anytime/anywhere access without investing in expensive IT infrastructure.

You have a real-time picture of your financials, multi-user access, automatic (and free) software updates, automatic backups and a low cost entry point.

If you’re thinking about changing your accounting system, now’s the time to do it. Speak to your MWM Advisory accountant about the best option for you.

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