We live in an industry where features make or break an accounting software solution for your organization. In fact, during the early decision making and evaluation process, the features each solution should be one of your top priorities. Below we've listed 10 features that your accounting software should have.
1. BASIC ACCOUNTING TASKS
This is our most important feature because most small businesses can make do with an accounting software solution that offers basic the functions of accounting. Some of these functions may include, income and expense tracking, financial report generation, client and vendor management, and invoicing. All too frequently we hear of a small business that fails due to their inability to accurately manage their accounting.
The second most important feature that you should be aware of when evaluating your accounting software solution is automation. Automation is new to the accounting industry and really started to become popular within the past three years. When evaluating your accounting software solution, look to see if it offers things like automatic billing, recurring payments, and past-due notifications as these are generally the biggest uses of automation in accounting.
3. MULTIUSER ACCESS
The bottom line is that your accounting software should offer multi-user access. Most of the time when you purchase accounting software, you have to pay on a seat-by-seat basis. Although it may get a little pricey, generally these solutions are bundled. Even if you don't have an in-house accounting department at your organization you should consider buying multiuser access so that you don't have to do everything on your own.
4. MOBILE ACCESS
The mobile market is booming and we as a society are spending more time on our phones than ever before. That's why it's important that your accounting software solution includes this feature. Having the ability to get a glimpse into the health of your organization's most important accounts from anywhere and at any time is convenient, insightful and helpful.
5. REAL-TIME DATA
If your accounting software solution offers mobile access, then it only makes sense that it should also offer real-time data. Real-time data eliminates the need to manually input financial information and give you the most up-to-date information on your organization's finances.
6. TEMPLATE CREATION
Saving time is a huge priority in today's business environment, that's why your accounting software solution should offer the ability to create both customized and premade templates for your client's quotes and estimates. Bonus points if it can automatically convert those estimates to invoices, making your job easier.
Your organization's accounting information is sacred and if your accounting software solution is unable to protect your data then you are at a huge risk. If your data is lost you will lose time, money, trade secrets, and potentially your company. Your accounting software solution should offer native security features that mesh with your own corporate safeguards.
8. CLOUD ARCHITECTURE
Cloud-based accounting software is fairly new to the industry but has made a huge impact. An accounting software solution that operates within the cloud lowers IT costs, reduces risk, and improves productivity. The cloud gives you the flexibility to choose from best-in-class solutions whose main focus is ease of integration.
9. THIRD-PARTY INTEGRATION
It's not uncommon for an organization to utilize multiple different cloud-based accounting software solutions to help manage different accounts (i.e. Accounts Receivable). That's why third-party integration is important. Furthermore, accounting software makes it easier to run your business through integration with data from apps and tools you use the most.
Your accounting information is so important to your organization that it extends beyond those of are managing its accounts. The data entered into your accounting software solution should be able to be used productively by various business applications in HR, sales, shipping and other departments. This goes hand-in-hand with third-party integration.
When you are evaluating your current or potential accounting software solution it is important that you understand the most important features.