One Thing Traditional Accounting Software Gets Wrong – and Cloud Apps Get Right
Sometimes, we hear from new ZarMoney users who are eager to try cloud accounting for themselves, but have held off for all the wrong reasons. Specifically, we are talking about those who are nervous about making the switch because they are already attached to their traditional accounting suite.
In this case, “attached” might not be the right word. After all, the really big small business accounting solution that dominates the market – you know the one – isn’t exactly beloved by its users. But, once customers have spent the time (and it was a lot of time) learning to use it, they are hesitant to begin again with something else.
Common as it is, that’s some pretty weak logic. That’s like saying “I’ve spent a lot of time mastering this really terrible thing, so why give it up for something better?”
You see, the biggest problem with traditional accounting software packages is that they are just too complicated. And, coincidentally, that’s the one issue a good cloud app can fix instantly. On the one hand, you get more features, customization, and functionality; on the other hand, you can skip the long classes and training programs designed to help you understand what many would consider an arcane interface.
Don’t get us wrong: we have a whole online university full of resources designed to help you get the most from your cloud accounting software. But, most people simply don’t need them… or at least don’t need to spend a huge amount of time with them. That’s because good apps are built on simplicity in key areas, such as:
An Interface That’s Easy to Use and Understand
If you look at your accounting software welcome screen and can barely understand what your choices are, how helpful is that same application going to be when it’s time to actually check accounts, send invoices, and manage your money? Accounting software should be easy to navigate, with simple guides that take you from one screen or concept to another.
Clear Instructions and Next Steps
Visit online help forms, and you’ll find that a lot of people end up feeling “stuck” using popular accounting packages on a very regular basis. They know they need help, but just can’t figure out what to do next. With cloud-based solutions, it’s easy to move back, forward, or to a different feature in one or two clicks.
If you want to modify the displays within most popular small business accounting suites, you’d better be prepared to set aside hours of your day, and maybe even pay for custom programming. To get different screens, reports, and user access with cloud software, however, you just have to adjust settings for an individual user.
Simple Undo Features
In the same way, making a mistake on some accounting platforms can be enough to ruin your afternoon. Using a cloud app, undoing a wrong turn is easy and intuitive. Plus, you make fewer mistakes in the first place because so many kinds of actions are automated.
Clear Reports and Conversions
What’s the point of having accounting software if you can’t tell where your money is going? Cloud apps give you the simplicity of streamlined reports so you can look at things like cash flow, receivables, and balances in a way that makes sense even if you don’t have extensive training as a bookkeeper, even on your mobile phone.
The One Big Thing Cloud Apps Get Right
Although this list is filled with different features, they are all just examples of an overriding philosophy – one that says cloud accounting software, and managing business finances in general, should be a simple and straightforward as possible.
For too long, software developers haven’t shared that point of view, and they’ve been pushing business owners and bookkeepers to use complicated interfaces and convoluted menus. Complexity invites mistakes and confusion, where simplicity brings clarity and ease-of-use. That’s one thing cloud accounting apps are getting right. Shouldn’t you be taking advantage?
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