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Accounting and bookkeeping

Do I need accounting software?

“Do I need accounting software?” is a common question among new business owners and entrepreneurs. On one hand, entrepreneurs may wonder just what accounting software is: what it can do and what benefits it offers. Others may understand the ins and outs but are still weighing up the decision between using accounting software versus maintaining manual records or employing an accountant. Here’s a quick rundown of everything you need to know.

1. Accounting software is about more than accounting

In the old days, businesses used to hire an accountant or bookkeeper to maintain all the financial records of the company. Nowadays, things are different. Accounting software is still about generating financial records (and, ultimately, financial statements), but it’s grown to offer a lot more, too. For example, many companies use integrated accounting solutions like QuickBooks to do things like generate invoices, create purchase orders and track payments. They also use it to monitor their cash flow in real time. For many entrepreneurs, having access to this kind of information at the touch of a button is very beneficial.

South African small business female entrepreneur
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Emmerentia from her South African based small business, Oh Yay! with some of her products she sells in her business.
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“Numbers were never really my strong point, so having a professional quote done in record time not only projects professionalism, but the format also changes the way new clients see me.” – Emmerentia, founder of Oh Yay!

2. Accounting software is a great money saver for small businesses

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“I work for myself and have no employees, so the fact that QuickBooks lets me load all my services, products and prices in one place makes running my business so much easier.”

Money is tight in every new business. And many entrepreneurs don’t want to pay for the services of an accountant. Fortunately, there is no legal ruling in South Africa that a small business must have a separate accountant.

Accounting software replaces many of the services of an accountant or bookkeeper in a small business. It helps entrepreneurs log incoming and outgoing funds, and can be used to generate holistic financial records. Better yet, it all happens at the touch of a button and at the fraction of the cost of hiring an accountant.

As an added benefit, many new entrepreneurs enjoy the hands-on process of managing their finances themselves. It helps them feel connected to their business, and allows them to watch its growth.

Grow Your Business with QuickBooks

3. Accounting software keeps admin to a minimum

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“I used to dread doing admin, but now it’s so easy and quick. I’m not just saying this – QuickBooks changed my life.” – Emmerentia, founder of Oh Yay!
A small business owner in South Africa with her handmade products

Since using QuickBooks Online, Emmerentia has more time to spend on her business rather than doing admin.

No entrepreneur wants to spend hours a week on financial admin, recording payments, generating invoices and keeping track of money owed. With accounting software, you free yourself from the burden of maintaining spreadsheets and manually updated templates. Instead, everything can be generated automatically, with just a few clicks of a button. Meaning that what might have taken hours can be reduced to mere minutes. It’s a great time saver for entrepreneurs who’d rather focus on growing their business.

4. Accounting software supports business growth

As your business begins to grow and scale, you’ll need a way to keep track of ever increasing orders, customers and moving parts within your business. So if you’re headed for a growth phase, accounting software is the ideal solution.

5. Accounting software can help your real-life accountant

If you want an accounting professional to check over your books, using accounting software can be a big help. On one hand, it’s easy to share your books electronically and helps present everything to an accountant in the correct format. On the other hand, using software reduces the work your accountant needs to do to keep your books in order. Meaning your accountant’s bill goes down, too.

6. Accounting software makes tax a breeze

Tax time can be stressful. But you can keep that stress to a minimum if you’ve kept your books in order all year. That means no headaches and no last minute catchup.

Many companies love how their accounting software and helps their businesses run better.

Here are what Emmerentia, who uses QuickBooks accounting software, had to say:

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“I can’t believe it took me seven years into running Oh Yay! to find and use QuickBooks.”

Discover more free Small Business Resources at the Intuit QuickBooks Resource Centre to help grow your business in South Africa today.

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