Which Accounting Software is Best for You?

Given my past roles in bookkeeping and accountancy, I am often asked “Which is the best accounting or bookkeeping software for our business?”

This is asked more often now, as there are so many more options today compared to a few years ago, when Sage dominated the market. The online SaaS software has exploded onto the market and changed the way businesses manage their finances and their business.

My personal preference is Xero and I use this intuitive, simple but beautiful, software for my own business requirements, but the answer really depends on your business needs.

Xero itself is an easy to use software package, but some feel it is basic compared to some of the products they have experienced in the past. Well in part, I think this is a deliberate part of their design process, but it’s simplicity and the open ended API’s, allow you to connect to so many other app’s that then personalise the software for your business.

To help you choose the best package for your business, here is an insight to my thinking when answering this question with my clients:

  • The size of your business. Micro, Small, Large, Corporate all have different needs.
  • Your budget to purchase the software etc
  • The needs of your business and requirement to integrate with other software or systems.
  • The industry you’re in and if any specialist software would help.
  • What features and reporting information do you need as a minimum. Make a ‘desirable’ list before you research.
  • How good are the support and training options.
  • It’s ease of use (browser and mobile, as I guarantee you will use an app if it is available and easy to use)
  • Do you need mobile functionality? I mean, do you need to use the software when you are away from the office? (eg quotes, sales orders, checking data)
  • Any recommendations. From other business owners, professionals, press….
  • What software does your own accountant support? Using a program they don’t support could cost you more in the long run!
  • And finally, please don’t just listen to the sales messages. Try and test the software.

I hope this list helps you choose the right software for your business. Perhaps make a shortlist of 2 or 3, gain a trial and have a play with their demo data. Do you find it easy to use? Does it do what you want it to do? As a minimum, does it do what you do now? Plus what features could benefit you in the future with efficiencies or improvments in the way you work?

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