It is a common practice that business owners, especially those who have a small set-up, love to do most of the things themselves. It allows saving a lot of money. As a result, there is a lot of accounting software available in the market that have been specifically designed to accommodate small business enterprises’ needs.
To date, almost all the accounting software developers have moved their applications to the cloud. As a result, it is now possible to avail of subscription-based services that range from having just the essential accounting functions to advanced features. There are packages for freelancers, sole proprietorship business, or start-ups known as starter packages. These packages’ functions include invoicing, keeping track of expenses, and necessary reporting facilities, more than enough for a business to start with the initial functioning.
Why Accounting Software?
It has been observed that those businesses that are incorporated or have a large number of employees usually require advanced accounting packages. They need facilities that can allow functions like double-entry accounting such as accounts payable and accounts receivable apart from general ledger facilities. The other advanced features desired by businesses include payroll, currency conversion, inventory tracking, CRM – customer relationship management, time and billing, business analytics, and many more.
Regardless of the requirements, accounting software is a good compromise for accounting on its own with the help of spreadsheets or hiring a person to do all the work related to accounting. However, it is essential to know how to choose accounting software for availing maximum benefits. Discussed below are a few features that must be present in accounting software:
Top features that must be present in accounting software
Keeping Up With The Entry Of Account Information:
Whether it is a retail business where there is a need to capture every single transaction or a one-on-one consultancy wherein the transactions are manually entered as per a pre-decided schedule, business accounting software requires that businesses keep up with data entry and keep everything updated at all times.
Now, being updated at all times has its benefit. It helps keep a business tuned in at all times, especially in terms of the financial pulse. That way, there will be a much higher chance of spotting a cash flow gap or knowing about a customer who might be facing a severe credit issue. It would not be possible for a small business that might have just begun to store all receipts and invoices and look into those at the end of the quarter or when the year ends.
Mobility With Cloud-Based Accounting Software:
A cloud-based accounting software extends the benefit of providing access to a business account from literally anywhere at any time. It is also compatible with the commonly used web browsers provided by most accounting software service providers. As a result, the following activities are possible:
Forward an invoice right from a mobile device.
Take a look at the expenses or invoice information or client requests.
Record any expense right on the spot and attach the required receipts. For example, a snap of a dinner host with a client can be attached to the concerning expenses.
Keep track of billable time along with a built-in timer.
Import a new contact directly from the call contact directory.
Another money and time-saving feature that has enhanced the need for ideal accounting software is the books’ direct access via the online route. Therefore, it eliminates the need to transfer any hard copy detail or electronic file manually every time there is a need to access the account.
Centralized Financial Management:
The use of accounting software has led to the centralization of many aspects of a business’s financial management. It has enabled invoicing, payroll entry management, and several critical aspects of customer relationship management. Such centralization of functions has led to considerable savings both in terms of money as well as time. It has eliminated the need to have a separate software program to take care of the various business functions.
Easy Tax Compliance:
Besides providing an idea of how much tax needs to be paid on individual invoices. The accounting software designed for small businesses allows us to come up with reports showing various kinds of details like how much tax a business is liable to pay and over what period. Hence, it becomes easy to gather all the necessary business data essential to file the required government tax. Also, there is business software that allows filing the returns directly.
A Tool For Analysis:
A business accounting software is the equivalent of an in-house financial advisor. The customizable reports allow analyzing the various aspects of a business, whether big or small. Thus, all the most used accounting software helps provide the much-needed data essential for smart decision making.
A report like the balance sheet summary can precisely indicate how well a business might be doing, mainly regarding the market’s outstanding. It would allow us to come up with appropriate plans to manage fund collection.
The accounting software is capable of managing numerous critical calculations. Consequently, the financial data will be highly accurate, especially when multiple people are making inputs. At the same time, it is possible to access information more quickly and accurately.