Savvy business owners agree gone are the days of shoe-box bookkeeping, ledger paper and even desk-top software, which is being replaced by cloud-based accounting programs such as Quick Books Online.
Mandy Wallace, staff accountant for Accounting Consultants, was guest speaker of the Chamber's Lunch & Learn September 10. Wallace is also a Chamber trustee.
"Our world is changing rapidly," Wallace said. "Technology is a driving force behind those changes."
"When someone comes to me, who is interested in starting a business, I encourage them to use Quick Books Online (QBO)," Wallace said. "What we have right now are people who are swamped, who are also having trouble finding employees to work for them. Small business owners have to wear many hats to keep their doors open and their business going. However, you need to remind yourself - you do not have to wear all of the hats. You have to know your limits. You cannot be expected to know everything."
"Using cloud-based accounting software will make it easier for you to remain in compliance with state and federal laws for sales,income and payroll taxes, insurance coverage and audits. Not only is it the right thing to do, it's the best thing you can do."
"Finances tie into all aspects of your business," Wallace said. "QBO allows you to run reports to fulfill your obligations, such as sales tax. It's not that it's just faster and more efficient, it also helps you meet your requirements. There are also built-in checks and balances. When you reconcile your bank account at the end of the month, you know all of your transactions are there and you have not missed anything. If you are using a shoe box, something may be lost. When using cloud-based software you can also get to your information anywhere you are at, and at any time."
"When you are in the cloud, backups are automatic," Wallace said. "As soon as you click the save button, your files are saved and backed up. With QBO it is difficult to accidentally delete things."
"You are going into business because you love what you do. Cloud-based software will put you in control as a business owner. You are more apt to understand where your money is going. A great feature of QBO is bank feeds. The software can pull information in from your bank. You can see what has been deposited and what has cleared. This will change your world as a small business owner, placing you back in control."
"There are also a vast array of aps that work with QBO to do all sorts of things," Wallace said. "As a contractor, when you finish a job, you can invoice the client on site, be paid and your work is fully complete, rather than going back to the office, billing out the work and then waiting for the check to arrive."
Wallace said the downside of QBO Online is the added cost of the program. "However, if it accomplishes what you need it to, it is well worth the expense. This is full-fledged accounting software. It will do everything you need it to, and then some."