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Software as a Service in the Business Environment

Software as a Service in the Business Environment

In today's advanced business technology, Software as a Service (SaaS) is a popular choice. Most companies are using this cloud application for a number of reasons. With SaaS, most of the applications work in the cloud. This is a great advantage for businesses because it improves productivity by providing access to information to people at once. There are no restrictions regardless of your device and location so long as you have Internet connection. 

Living in the digital era also means you do not need a powerful computer to make the most out of SaaS. With your smartphone, laptop or tablet, you can take advantage of SaaS solution. What makes SaaS a smart and efficient business technology? 

1. Reduces time, increases productivity

Installation and configuration are issues often faced by companies during software deployment. The best thing about SaaS is that it is already installed and configured. All the user have to do is to provision the server and within a couple of hours, the application will be ready for use. Since SaaS solution gives users the ability to get access to every bit of information anytime, anywhere, productivity will no longer be affected. Even employees across the globe can still be in the loop when the software solution is used. 

2. Cost-efficient service

Saas is in a multitenant or shared environment. That said, the costs of software and hardware license are low compared with traditional business model. Business owners also have the option to make changes to the environment depending on their needs. This is a viable option for small and medium businesses because the maintenance costs are reduced as well. 

3. Easy to use

A traditional business environment that embraces SaaS solution should not worry about getting used to the advanced business technology. This solution has proof of concepts and users are given the option to test the functionality of the software to ensure a smooth migration. This means that you can test SaaS offerings before you commit to buying them. 

4. Stress-free upgrade

The traditional model may require you to buy an upgrade package and install it right off the bat to get the model to work. Most SaaS providers give you the liberty to enjoy an advanced business environment without having to worry about the upgrade. This is because the effort and costs associated with upgrading the environment is significantly lower than the traditional model. You will no longer have to pay for any services to upgrade the environment.

3 Reasons Innovation Is Crucial To Small Business

3 Reasons Innovation Is Crucial To Small Business

If you are a small business owner, you might think that you are not completely affected by the digital evolution that has taken large businesses by storm. As technology changes before a company can completely adapt to it, should small businesses remain complacent? Are advanced business technology only designed for established companies? Many small business owners continue to retain traditional business processes and perhaps, unperturbed to the fact that everyone is affected by digital transformation. 

For one, going digital and having innovative edge ensures survival. Aside from saying goodbye to manual processes, businesses that realise the benefit of digital transformation when it comes to increasing productivity have gained excellent results. It is common for businesses to be in doubt especially when they are treading upon an unfamiliar territory. Everything is new and uncertain. 

Innovation does not necessarily mean stepping out of your comfort zone. Being innovative means that you strive for improvement. Fresh ideas do not necessarily equate to completely transforming a workplace into a digital zone. It only means that you are seeking a better way to keep employees, clients and customers happy. 

What happens when small businesses fail to innovate? 

You can put your company out of business:Change is the only thing constant in this world. Trends that used to be a big hit in the '80s will no longer matter today. You can only thrive if you continue to be innovative. This means you should meet consumer demands. These days, everything is done and completed instantly. Your company should play a major role in making it easy for your customers to transact. Keep in mind that the digital era combines speed and efficiency. Anything that slows down the process can turn your customers off. 

You could fall short on providing products to your customers: Customer satisfaction is essential to ensure survival. How can you guarantee that your customers will remain loyal to your company if you leave plenty of them disappointed because your supply is not enough to provide excellent customer experience? The lack of foresight will only give your customers an opportunity to consider competitors that can provide better products and services without having to worry about limited supply volume. 

You lose your competitive edge: Any game-changing innovation that used to make customers flock just to get their hands on your product or service can become non-existent if competitors continue to innovate. Just because your ideas work does not mean it will continue to dominate the industry in the coming years. You need to continuously innovate because many business predators are willing to go for the kill to stay ahead of the game. 

3 Things To Consider When Choosing Bookkeeping Software

3 Things To Consider When Choosing Bookkeeping Software

Advanced business technology makes day-to-day tasks easier and less monotonous. Keeping receipts in a shoebox becomes a thing of the past because bookkeeping software provides a better way to take care of your bookkeeping tasks. If you intend to view critical business data, all you need to do is to generate reports with the software. It will be easy for accountants and bookkeepers to provide advice and recommendations to business owners as financial reports are always available. 

Since the role of advanced business technology is to supplement some bookkeeping tasks, it is important to know the features that are aligned with your business needs. If you want to reduce repetitive tasks, the software you choose should address these concerns. 

It might be challenging to choose the software that works for you, but checking the feature will help you make the right choice. 

Essential Software Features

Cloud-based technology:These days, it is important for businesses to collaborate with clients and bookkeepers remotely. Bookkeeping software with cloud capabilities will also boost your company's productivity, provide easy access to documents and help you analyse data. If you intend to implement new software, it is necessary that it is cloud-based. 

Capture document: There are numerous ways you can generate receipts, prepare invoices and obtain documents. Since it is difficult to monitor everything including your income and expenses, you need to choose the software with document capture capabilities. Since many business owners considering using their smartphones as a convenient way to extra key information or snap a photo of any essential bookkeeping documents, the software that features a mobile app that can upload essential information anytime, anywhere and on any device. 

Integration with accounting software of choice

Since many small businesses use advanced software such as Quickbooks, it is essential that the software you choose must have the ability to integrate with the software of your choice. 

When efficient bookkeeping software is implemented, you will be assured that you will generate accurate financial report that you can easily interpret. It will also be easier for you to know where your business is going as you are aware of your financial health. Although virtual bookkeepers or bookkeeping software may require business owners to step out of their comfort zone, considering the absence of face-to-face interaction, advanced business technology is indeed beneficial because it provides a faster way to get things done. Bookkeeping software also checks and balances everything that has to do with your income and expenses, so it will be easier for you to keep your business on its feet. 

Have You Obtained The Benefits Of Cloud Technology?

Have You Obtained The Benefits Of Cloud Technology?

Bookkeeping is important to every business no matter the size. Without bookkeeping, your business can be in chaos as you do not have a dependable person to help you track your income and expenses. In the past, it takes hours before you can get your bookkeeping tasks done. Since it is time-consuming, it is not often prioritised. These days, there are easier ways you can take care of your bookkeeping tasks such as switching over to cloud technology. It might sound like a promising break-through, but it does more than just reducing manual tasks. Cloud-based software also enables businesses to increase productivity so you can take care of all of your business obligations. 

1. Real-time reports are generated

If you are going to rely on paper-based reports, it may take days or even weeks before you can get the report. Also, if there are errors on the report, you need to coordinate with your bookkeeper to correct discrepancies. Cloud-based software bypasses these processes by giving you instant access to the information you need. As a result, you can collaborate with your bookkeeper or accountant and get some recommendations whenever necessary. 

2. Online invoicing 

Generating invoice is not easy for those who still do it manually. You will need help from the software so you can switching to online invoicing. With this, you will be able to know the customers and clients who still owe you money. It makes it easier for you to track down late payers because you will receive notification once customers or clients view your invoice. 

3. Reports are accessible

Cloud technology offers mobility so you can view reports anywhere at anytime and on any device. Even if you are out for lunch, the reports sent to you can be viewed instantly. You do not have to be in front of your laptop to do this, thanks to the flexibility of cloud-based software. Aside from reading financial reports, you can also track expenses, check balances and many others. 

4. Everyone can collaborate

Physical presences is no longer required if you want to conduct a meeting with your employees to discuss your business plans in the future. Cloud technology provides multi-user access so it will be easy for you to work with your bookkeeper and accountant. You will no longer have to keep on guessing about your business performance and financial health of your business because cloud technology gives you the information you need. 

5 Important Tools To Make Bookkeeping A Breeze

5 Important Tools To Make Bookkeeping A Breeze

Bookkeeping can be a bane to business owners if proper system is not put in place. While you are trying to keep up with bookkeeping, other tasks can distract you and may even be reasons for you to forget about bookkeeping unless you are already reminded by your late tax payments. Late fees and penalties can hurt your business especially if it happens frequently. Since bookkeeping is an essential task, you need 5 important tools so ensure a stress-free bookkeeping process. 

1. Smartphone/mobile device

Technology offers flexibility to business owners by making traditional bookkeeping a thing of the past. Today, it is easier to manage your bookkeeping files in just a few taps. Gone are the days when mobile phones are only intended for texting or calling. Technology has brought business management to the next level by making it easier for business owners to check information, delegate task and even conduct a regular meeting. The best thing about smartphones is that it breaks the cliche of 9 to 5 jobs. You can collaborate even without being physically present. 

2. ATO website

Have you ever wondered about the deadline for filing tax returns? ATO's website is going to be your friend as it provides information you need to ensure you do not miss the deadline. It provides online forms, tips, instructions and other important reminders so you prevent incurring late fees. It is your one-stop shop for your bookkeeping needs. You can also utilise its online tools such as the tax calculator, which enables you to find out about the amount you are going to pay come tax time. 

3. Google Drive

Everyone prefers to store files in the cloud instead of using desktop programs. This is because it is convenient and flexible. With cloud storage such as Google Drive or Dropbox, it will be easier for you to access financial report anytime, anywhere and even on any device. With this ability to access important information, you can review income statements and balance sheets in real time. The cloud storage also allows you to back up your data safely. 

4. Project Management Software

Location often restricts workers from collaborating. With project management software, you will be able to brainstorm with your workers without being in the same location. The software allows you to keep things organised so you will have the ability to track the amount of work you have done. 

5. Bookkeeping software

Bookkeeping software programs such as Xero makes it easier to track your financial report and even minimise fraud. Every transaction can be traced through transaction history so you will be able to know if a financial statement has been altered before you lose vast amount of cash. 

Why You Need To Automate Your Bookkeeping Processes?

Why You Need To Automate Your Bookkeeping Processes?

Manual processes consume most of your time because you need to ensure that the information is correct and accurate. However, many businesses do not have enough time to focus on bookkeeping tasks that it often ends up taking a backseat. If you do not give priority to your bookkeeping task, you will face a number of problems such as falling behind your tax payments. Penalties due to late payments can hurt your business. There are many ways you can automate your bookkeeping processes with cloud technology. Automation allows you to spend less time on bookkeeping tasks without running the risk of exposing sensitive information to errors, data breaches and intrusion. 

Reasons You Need To Automate Your Business

1. It streamlines business processes. 

Have you ever been stuck in one particular task because your company is still keeping manual processes? Some bookkeeping tasks require you to dedicate additional time and effort to ensure that the data is correct and free of errors. With cloud technology, you will be able to make this objective possible as it simplifies your workplace by providing advanced solutions making staff management a breeze. 

2. Collaborating with workers will be easier. 

In the past, you need to be chained to your desk to collaborate with your team. Automating processes with cloud technology will make it possible for you to collaborate without necessarily requiring the physical presence of your workers. Whether they are from a different location or using a different device, it will never be possible to brainstorm. You will also know the task's progress and coordinate with your team if some strategies are not working. 

3. Reviewing expense reports can be done in real time. 

The problem with paper statement is that you have to wait for your bookkeeper to submit the report before you go over the information. Automation makes it easy for you to review your expense reports so you will be able to identify whether or not your business is doing well. In turn, you will be able to plan ahead and grow your business. 

4. You can prevent fraud before it affects your business. 

Fraudulent activities can go unnoticed if you do not have a system to track activities in real time. Having access to your financial information will make it easier for you to spot irregularities before they can wreck havoc on your business. With cloud technology, keeping up with your bookkeeping records will never be a challenge.

These New Year Bookkeeping Habits Need To Be Part Of Your Business

These New Year Bookkeeping Habits Need To Be Part Of Your Business

Have you already identified your business’ areas for improvement? If you haven’t yet, now is the best time to make an assessment especially on the financial aspect of your business. Even though your business is generating profits, losing money is still inevitable if you do not keep your finances in check. As a small business owner, you need to pay serious attention to all aspects of your business including the financial aspect.

1.    Use bookkeeping software that meets the needs of your business

<p>These days, you can choose from a wide range of software that can carry out daily business tasks efficiently. However, you should avoid choosing the first one that you come across as it might have features that you are unable to use. The product should coincide with the needs of your business and help you achieve daily goals consistently. You can ask your bookkeeping professional for advice on the software that works for you.

2.    Choose a professional bookkeeper

A bookkeeper plays an important role in your business and you will realize their importance once you need assistance with various aspects of your business such as GST registration, business structure, obtaining an ABN and many more. It is recommended you visit your bookkeeper regularly and avoid waiting until the end of financial year to get advice. A regular visit can help you determine problems and address issues before they take a toll on your business.

3.    Separate your personal and business finances

It is easy to get tempted with combining your business accounts with your personal accounts but mixing both transactions can spell trouble in the long run. As a result, you will have a messy bookkeeping. Make sure you open a business bank account, which is intended for business transactions only. You should also have a separate personal savings accounts and credits that you will use for personal spending.

4.    Keep receipts and other similar data for your record keeping

It is best to keep your data for a minimum of 5 years as the ATO requires so you can keep track of your transactions. However, you should also keep in mind that five years of data can also bring so much confusion as they can add up over time. Instead of keeping them in boxes, you should more your data online so you can retrieve them easily when needed. Not only will you save on storage space, but enter data efficiently. It is also practical to go paperless in terms of bookkeeping so you can access data everywhere.  These days, you can choose from a wide range of storage apps such as Google Drive.

5.    Observe timely tax payments

If you used to fall behind your tax payment schedules because of unavailable funds, make sure you set aside funds for paying tax in the coming year. This is an important aspect that you need to pay attention to when running your business. Make sure you know where tax payments are due so you won’t catch yourself in a mad panic as the due date approaches. It is best to open another bank account which you will only use for paying taxes. It can help you make timely payments and manage your cash flow.

Signs Of Business Fraud And Ways To Prevent Them

Small business owners consider embezzlement prevention as a challenge because fraudulent transactions are difficult to detect. Missing cash balances cannot be easily noticed until the amount has been recorded. Even blank cheques and fake invoices are proof that something fishy is going on, and both small and big businesses can fall victim to fraud. It can even go as far as inventing fake vendors on invoices so cheques can be issued to themselves. This is by far the most common way an employees steals from the company.

The transaction raises a red flag once you discover that the bank statement is in somebody else's name. Unfortunately, it is already too late to put a lid on the transaction as it has already been made.

There is a fine line that separates incompetence from fraud. This is why it is hard to conclude that the transaction that took place was indeed fraudulent unless it has been done habitually. For instance incorrect entries may appear as though the bookkeeper has been changing information, but at the end of the day you will realise that the bookkeeper just did not know the correct process. It is essential to know the telltale signs before jumping into conclusion.

Signs of fraud

If a bookkeeper is having trouble matching accounts payable and accounts receivable to your balance sheet, you may need to review the information on the report. You will be given many reasons why the report has not yet been updated. In fact, a bookkeeper may tell you that the reason for not providing an updated balance sheet is because of faulty bookkeeping software. This leads to running a report manually. When reports are generated manually, the process will take longer than usual and the information can be altered. Bookkeepers will also blame the software for failing to reconcile a bank account. These excuses should be a cause for alarm and you need to act on it by regularly monitoring business transactions.

Preventing Fraud

Although you cannot easily detect or prevent fraud, there are ways you can prevent them and one of which is by giving bookkeepers deadline for running a report. Reports must be ready after month-end and you should review them monthly.

It is also necessary to assign a different person for enter the bills and paying the bills. You can monitor where the money is being spent if you ask employees to attach cheques to the invoices. You must also sign your own cheques. Physical inventory also helps you check if there are suspicious transaction taking place. Your employees have to know you are monitoring every transaction.

3 Benefits Of Moving To The Cloud

If you are a small-business owner embracing traditional bookkeeping for years, adopting cloud technology is like treading upon a very unfamiliar territory. However, like a man setting foot on a new place for the first time, you need a compass to prevent being lost.

Cloud technology may not be something you can learn overnight, but migrating to this technology can give you more benefits than you know. In the past, bookkeepers have to spend hours managing invoices, receipts and bills. With a vast range of organisation tools and technologies you can use today, you can reduce the headaches of manual tasks.

Using cloud-based software, or also referred to as Software as a Service (SaaS) provides you access to technology where you can store and access your data conveniently via Internet connection. The primary concern of business owners who are accustomed to traditional bookkeeping is the lack of proper training when it comes to using cloud-based tools. However, embracing cloud technology does not really mean you are going to completely abandon traditional technology. Today's cloud-based software ensures that the transition will be as smooth as possible.

1. Enable employees to collaborate
Your team members do not have to be physically present to collaborate on a project. Since cloud-based software enables everyone to access the project without worrying about the location, checking an invoice or adding expense receipts anytime, anywhere and from any device will no longer be a problem.

2. Easily Identify Discrepancies
The success of many small businesses depend on the relationships with distributors and vendors. One issue that may catch the attention of a distributor or vendor is when a bill has not yet been paid. Questions will be raised and these can greatly affect the relationship that has already been established. With cloud tools, bookkeepers can verify discrepancies to find out if a bill has been missed or paid. Verifying these discrepancies preserves vendor relationship.

3. Reduce manual tasks
The best part about using cloud tools is that you can access documents from any device. Since the documents are integrated with other cloud-based tools, team members will find it easier to access much-needed information. Manual data entry will also be reduced.

Cloud-based software makes it easy for small businesses to collaborate, verify discrepancies and reduce manual tasks. This provides owners more time to focus on other aspects of the business.  Some cloud software providers offer a trial version so reluctant businesses can give cloud technology a try before completely embracing it.

Four Reasons You Need Bookkeeping Software

Issuing invoices, managing cash flow and tracking expenses are integral part of your business. Due to the process business owners have to undergo, these tasks are considered to be an administrative nightmare. This is why people who want to make the bookkeeping system easier have switched to cloud-based software. This way, mundane and repetitive tasks are automated so labor-intensive processes become a problem of the past. If you have not yet considered bookkeeping automation, here are four good reasons to do so.

1. It streamlines payroll process

Bookkeeping demands accuracy especially when it comes to dealing with payroll. This requires time and patience because you need to make sure that the details are correct. Since it is your employees' salary that is at stake, you need to have a simple but intelligent automated payroll process so you will have the ability to streamline staff payment process. Financial manage tools such as QuickBooks Payroll software helps you calculate taxes in minutes. You can also integrate with QuickBooks Online for your accounting solution to be more holistic.

2. It enables you to review and manage stock items easily

Businesses require tracking, managing and even reviewing stock items. These tasks must be done on a regular basis to keep business on its feet. If you have an inventory management software, you will be able to scan and create product barcodes easily. This is because the software simplifies the process and ensures that the details are accurate. The software will also make it easy for you to manage all tasks using one software system.

3. It simplifies your invoicing system

Invoicing is another time-consuming task that needs extra attention. It involves chasing up unpaid accounts. If you do not have a streamlined bookkeeping system, it is easy to lose track of payments due. This is why you need to have an automated invoicing system that will enable you to schedule invoices to be sent automatically to the customers. The invoices can be sent individually or in batches. An automated invoicing system also stores your invoices in one place so you can easily identify the ones that are already overdue.

4. It integrates CRM

If you have the option to integrate a customer relationship management (CRM) system, it will be much easier for you to focus on other aspects of your business. If you always find yourself juggling numerous client accounts  and you find keeping tracking of communication a tedious task, using lead management software will help you keep an eye on your business so you can improve customer satisfaction. Once you automate your CRM processes, you can also give your employees the ability to use a mobile solution so collaboration does not stay within the portals of your workplace.