Why you should pay for your bookeeping software
In a previous article I reviewed some of the free bookkeeping software that is available. While these packages may be suitable for some businesses, they do come with a number of potentially serious limitations. Things such as possible lack of technical support, flexibility and required features e.g BAS reporting.
In this article I explore the other side of the argument Why you should consider paying for a commercial bookkeeping software package, specifically online accounting applications ?
Traditional vs Cloud Hosted Software
Before we start that journey lets put the issue of cloud accounting vs traditional to bed. Today there is simply no compelling reason to self host your accounting package on your own infrastructure with all its inherent risks.
A 2014 survey states that 75% of young business owners would not use a particular accountant if they didn’t offer a cloud solution.
With Australia leading the way in terms of adopting cloud technologies its a no brainer for new startups to utilise modern Accounting software as a service from one of the major vendors such as Xero or Intuit Quickbooks
If you are an established business then migrating to a new cloud based accounting solution may seem daunting, however Shellys Bookkeeping has assisted many clients to move off their dusty old PC and 5 year old accounting software and make the move to the cloud.
End of financial year or the start of a BAS period is the perfect time to consider making the transition.
Why choose cloud based bookkeeping software ?
One of compelling reasons is that unlike buying a piece of software on a dvd you are actually buying an end to end service.
The three major bookkeeping software as a service providers Xero, Quickbooks, and Myob are the key leaders down under.
Over 50 % of my clients use Xero due to its maturity, features and low pay as you go cost.
Paying for a professional, secure hosted accounting application has advantages that free software simply cannot match. The advanced BAS reporting built into these bookkeeping packages makes compliance easier. With the software kept up to date by the service providers automatically, you never get caught using the wrong Payroll tax tables or Superannuation guarantee amounts.
Commercial versions of bookkeeping software often have more advanced reporting features, inventory and payroll features to make running your business easier.
Advantages of a cloud based bookkeeping service
Security and Reliability
Commercial online bookkeeping software is hosted on enterprise grade servers in state of the art data centres, so physical security is significantly higher than your office. Companies such as Xero also take the security of your data extremely seriously as well. Your Data is encrypted with bank level 128 bit encryption security as it travels between you and Xero’s servers. You can read more aboutXero's Security Features Here
When was the last time, you backed up your company’s local accounts server ? Does your free app manage backups of your data. Can you actually recover it ?
With an online bookkeeping solution your data is backed up, duplicated across geographic sites and available 24 x 7.
If your office is flooded or is otherwise inaccessible not a problem you simply use any PC and connect, no lengthy purchase, rebuild and restoring to a local PC is needed.
Pay as you go
Buying your own enterprise grade server(s), accounting software, uninterruptible power supply and backup solution is not especially cheap. For a low monthly fee you can have access to leading edge bookkeeping software hosted and backed up in state of the art data centres along with 24 x 7 support. You can check outXero's Pricing Plans Here
Continuous Improvement and Integration
Commercial bookkeeping software providers have a team of dedicated highly trained software developers continually improving, adding new features and creating integration tools with other application providers to deliver unprecedented levels of workflow efficiencies. Want to streamline and automate your accounts payable – then apps such as Recieptbank (http://www.receipt-bank.com/) allow you to do this. Google and Sharesight (http://www.sharesight.com.au/) simplify how you manage your business. You can see Xero’s list of integration add ons here
Commercial Online bookkeeping software allow for real time collaboration. You and your bookkeeper can see the same data in real time along with your accountant. No more sending shoeboxes and spreadsheets around and waiting months to see the latest cash flow. No need to update salary tax scales every year – the software providers do this for you seamlessly.
Can you get assistance from the vendor of your free application ?? who can help you or are you left to google and online forums ?. Paid applications have a team of dedicated service desk staff and are available 24 x 7. If you require assistance at your request they can even remotely log into your system and assist with resolving your issue.
Is your free accounting software limited to the number of users, or number of transactions ?? what if your business grows and your need multiple people accessing your accounts, can it do that? What if your business expands into new markets, can it be configured to meet those new requirements, What if your server runs out of capacity? .
Commercial cloud bookkeeping software is built to be scalable, hosted on virtual servers, capacity and performance can be increased on demand.
While free accounting apps may seem appealing if you want to save money, but consider the bigger picture. Your accounting system is the heart of your business, without access to a reliable system you cannot pay your creditors, pay your employees, purchase stock, record sales your business would grind to a halt.
The advantages of cloud based bookkeeping service such as xero or quickbooks cannot be beat. The level of innovation, feature rollout, integration and support simply cannot be matched by a free software provider. Shellys bookkeeping can help you to make the correct choice for your business.
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