Considerations when choosing a new Accounting Software package

12th February 2018 by Lucy Moore

Gone are the days of the red ledger books! With the government’s Making Tax Digital initiative on the horizon for all companies big or small, your choice in accounting software is now more important than ever. Indeed, if you are VAT registered with turnover above the VAT threshold, you will need to be ready with compatible software by April 2019.

There are so many things that need to be considered when investing in a new accounting package and overlooking one element of the system can be costly. It is very important that all aspects of your current and future business have been considered.  You don’t want to outgrow your choice to early.

Implementation of new software can be hard work, especially if big decisions have been made without considering how this may affect the actual usage of and reporting from the software. It is essential that the current business processes be considered at an early stage to ensure that the product that is being implemented is the best one for your business.

Having a state-of-the art accounts package can cost a fortune, not only in financial terms but also with regard to staff time. There may be cheaper and easier alternatives that will still do all you need, so it’s very important to assess all the options available and seek advice and recommendations.

What should you accounting software package do for you? 

  • It should make life easier.
  • It should improve record keeping and reporting and ensure that all your transactions are appropriately dealt with.
  • It should be ready for Making Tax Digital for VAT!

However, even with the most up to date software, I’m sorry to say, it’s not magic and still requires human input and to be reviewed by someone who has good up-to-date tax & accounting knowledge.

Long standing accounting processes tend to be very organic, so when a new process is required it’s quite often just added on to what you already have – ending up with something that is complicated or onerous. It can be difficult to try to streamline such a process and make it more effective.

Those of us who use accounts packages still need have to live by the mantra of rubbish data input equals rubbish reporting output. Therefore, it is imperative that when new systems are installed processes are reviewed and all staff are trained adequately.

Nowadays there are plenty of different accounting software to choose from and, although traditional desktop software is still very popular and in some cases the best option, cloud accounting is also becoming more popular.

I will cover this topic in my next blog to be published on 26 February 2018.


Author

Lucy Moore

Lucy Moore

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