Investing in accounting software: can you afford to wait?

If your business is just starting out, you're faced with an even larger dilemma. You don't have the cash flow or funds to invest in software that contains all the features you could ever need or want, yet you're understandably reluctant to settle for free software that is likely to create more problems than it solves.

However, by refraining from investing in software, you'll have to spend far more time on administrative tasks. Can you afford to wait?

The dangers of waiting

Waiting for the ‘perfect’ software solution makes sense to many startups. What's the point in plugging your data into a limited system that you plan to replace in a few months?

However, it's important to consider the costs of waiting for the ideal software package to come along:

  • You'll have less time to dedicate to growth, sales, and strategic planning if you have to use homemade spreadsheets to keep track of your business.
  • You'll be tempted to delay key business tasks until you have software that provides improved visibility.
  • It may be difficult to identify the 'ideal' software package – are you waiting for software that doesn't exist?
  • Staff may become frustrated by having to rely on improvised, temporary software, reducing morale.
  • Your competitors will have huge efficiency advantages due to your lack of software, potentially widening the gap between you.

A different mindset

Free software is usually severely limited in terms of user numbers, quality of support, and even basic features, and offers little in the way of growth opportunities – these free systems simply aren’t built to handle large amounts of data.

Instead, change your mindset. Look for software that will be useful now, and will only grow in usefulness in the future.

How does this work?

Find a system that offers different tiers based on business size, with upgrades available as and when the business grows. This'll allow you to grow your software with your business, without paying for features that you don't yet need – or having to migrate your data when you need to upgrade.

You may be even be able to negotiate with potential software providers on price and the types of features included in the entry level package.

It's in your interest, and your software provider's interest, to build a long term relationship with mutual benefits. By explaining your future business growth plans to potential providers, you'll learn if and how they can play a part.

Overall, in today's world trying to start a business without accounting software is tough – unless you're an Excel expert with a template ready to go! For companies in construction, the unique payment structure of the sector makes it even more difficult for homemade software to work.

Integrity Software's construction accounting software offers a number of tiers for businesses in the construction sector. Find out which tier is right for your business and get in touch to learn more.

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