Savvy business owners – whether they run small or large businesses – will use a program to keep their books for them. Small business accounting software has been around for decades and has helped many professionals ensure that their accounting is not only accurate but kept up to date. This insurance of well-kept books meant the ATO is happy, which means you’re happy too.

That being said, newer entrepreneurs may find themselves in trouble if they start to see some form of success. Many new businesses will be using a free or very basic version of the classic ERP or BMS system. However, with success comes a need for a beefier small business accounting software system. Here are some things to look out for if you think your business’ financials have fallen behind due to your chosen program.

Outgrowing your current financial management system

1. Time Consumption

Owners and accountants alike have a lot on their plate as is.

There are a lot of moving parts in a business, and the owner needs to be on top of each and every part. A major issue that can arise with an older financial management system is the amount of time put into the accounting itself. Owners don’t have the time necessary to manually input data or create spreadsheets due to their old and ineffective software.

2. Business Position

Knowing who is in charge of what within your business is very important.

This is especially true with accounting. Gone are the days where you could simply tell someone to do something in person. These days, accounting files are sent to any number of people that are meant to look them over and adjust them, only to send them along to another set of people. This can make it hard to know exactly how your business is doing unless you have an accurate audit trail in place. Older accounting software makes this trail difficult to maintain.

3. Workarounds

When you’re performing your accounting duties, you should be able to sit down, plug in your numbers, and have high-quality information when you’re finished. However, with certain basic packages of small business accounting software, the tools you need to perform certain duties just aren’t available. That means you have to manually calculate these items or purchase add-ons to solve the problem. This is time-consuming and unnecessary with updated software.

4. Can’t Meet Customer Expectations

Your customers are what keep your business alive, and your job if to keep them coming back. With the right systems in place, this task is very easy. However, if you’re using outdated or basic small business accounting software, this task becomes difficult. You won’t be able to properly forecast demand or track interactions with a basic package, which hurts your relationship with your customers.

One laptop, many users

5. Inability to Scale

A business needs to be able to scale to its customers and their demands.

Your growing business needs more people to manage the multitude of new customers. That means these new employees will need access to certain aspects of the business’ accounting. With basic packages, only a certain amount of people are allowed access. That can cause a huge backlog, which will only trickle down to your customers.

6. Data Security

Having all of your data be lost with a power outage or an errant kick of the cord is really aggravating. It’s happened to the best of us. But this is another reason to upgrade your accounting software. With cloud-based accounting, your work is saved directly to the cloud. This means that should your tabby decide to tear out the cord, your month’s worth of accounting would be safe and sound.

Don’t Settle for Slow and Basic Software

If your business is booming, you need to invest in proper accounting equipment.

With the right small business accounting equipment in place, you are able to keep your information safely stored and up to date. With minimum effort, advanced software will keep your business in line much easier than the basic free version. It’s time to kick that free version to the kerb.