The benefits of good software
Software, systems, programmes, they all sound like a great idea and quite frankly can often promise the world right? But in the day to day reality of running a business, trying to improve systems can often come at the bottom of the pile, whether due to concerns about costs, time to implement or even just having to search through a myriad of options to find the right one.
So what are genuinely the benefits of a good finance system and why is it worth the time and money to set one up?
The power of information
We’ve said it before and we’ll say it again. Information is power. You probably make dozens of decisions a day, but what if those decisions can be made with the confidence of having comprehensive, accurate and up to date information to hand? That might be having a cashflow forecast that shows some large supplier payments are due a few days before your biggest customer has promised payment. Maybe a stock delivery is late, risking shortages and impacting your own delivery dates. Perhaps a customer who always pays on time is starting to slip by a few days each month and would benefit from a catch up to check everything is running smoothly.
Things can change so fast in business, so knowing you can get information in an instant and that its up to date can genuinely be game changing.
Reduction in errors & costs
Human error is inevitable and can be a big cause of inconsistencies and errors in data. A good system can often mitigate this with automation, forms, tailor-made workflows, and clear user or data permissions, reducing the likelihood of errors causing major issues to your operations. Ultimately, automation can also have a positive impact on your bottom line. Reducing manual input can cut overall costs in a department or just free up your staff to be working on more value-adding activities.
A good system can help you to identify and streamline or even remove some irrelevant tasks and automate repetitive or manual jobs.
Let’s be honest, legislation changes at such a pace it can sometimes feel like a full time job just to keep up with it. Especially if its in an area you aren’t an expert in. Most modern software systems will have automatic updates when something changes. This can come in particularly useful in areas like payroll where systems can do checks such as making sure all employees are on at least the minimum wage, or highlight where you need to enrol an employee in the pension scheme. One less thing to have to think about right?
Lots of these things are a lovely to have, but not necessarily essential. You can certainly keep on top of those things without a system telling you about them if you want to. But there are some areas you just can’t deal with without a system these days. Making Tax Digital is the government’s new scheme that means all relevant businesses must not only keep digital records, but submit their VAT return through a compatible software.
But how do I cut through all the marketing hype and actually understand how it will help me?
Well that’s where a good partner can pay dividends. Someone who understands how a system works can come in to your business, find out what you actually need and tailor a solution specifically for you. They can highlight features that will actually be beneficial and be honest about what not to spend your money on, as well as providing some much needed explanations of the inevitable jargon! They should be able to guide you through the setup, provide you and any staff members with the relevant training, and give continued support as you need it.
Updating or implementing a new software system can seem like a daunting and expensive exercise to begin with. But once you cut through the waffle, find a qualified and informed partner and get it up and running, you may just find it revolutionary.
Here at Aliter Finance, we are Quickbooks ProAdvisors and can help you from initial set up through to the day to day running. If you are interested in knowing how Quickbooks could be beneficial to you, get in contact and we’d be delighted to help where we can.