LongIsland.com

STRATEGIC COMPUTING (continued from 5/23/2001)

Written by homebusiness  |  24. May 2001

A couple of days ago we discussed the importance of keeping organized records with ACT! 2000 software. Today, we will be reviewing my pick for accounting software and some other tools that will help your home and small business. Easy Accounting- There are two accounting packages that come to mind when I think about accounting. The first is of course Quickbooks Pro 2001 and the other is Peachtree Accounting. Both of these systems are very powerful with easy to use interfaces, training, various reporting, and add-ons. When I've set up these systems I've found some good and bad in both. For example, Quickbooks doesn't really support importing tables from Peachtree if you decided to move to their package. Unless you are strong in configuring tables for import, I would suggest you stick with Peachtree. Peachtree, a strong package for small business, has much flexibility when it comes to designing your General Ledger Codes. I would say Peachtree takes the cake when it comes to responsibility accounting; but do you need all of that? Accounting software is difficult to choose. Once you are up and running (and have devoted numerous hours to data entry) you'll find you're more attached to your software than it is to you. Usually I prefer to sit with a customers accountant to find out what package best suites their needs, and what degree of understanding they have with any particular package. This is very important! Your accountant can spend less time auditing your books (which means money savings) or he could struggle through much of the process of searching for information. Your primary goal is to find something that both fits your accountants needs, as well as yours. I always recommend signing up for training and ordering a support plan for phone access to a support representative should a question or need arise. For more advanced, heavy duty accounting, I suggest SBT accounting software. This software is really for a business that has a full time accounting department with a Controller or CFO. This software is provided by local resellers who specialize in SBT accounting and who can provide various consulting and programming/modification needs. It's a strong package with a lot of add-ons and supported 3rd party software. It operates on Novell and Windows servers, and generally costs anywhere from $2,000 and up based on the modules purchased and number of users. However, it does provide a complete corporate solution covering sales, accounting, manufacturing, inventory, etc . . . Like I said, it's very important to know what your accountant's needs are, his familiarity with the product, and what external experience can be brought into your company to help manage and use your software. If software is too complex, most users shy away from using it correctly thereby limiting its functionality and effectiveness. For additional information on multitudes of accounting software based on your industry, operating systems, or application; please visit: FindAccountingSoftware.Com Below are some useful sites to search for Shareware, Freeware, and Demo Software: Cnet Network TuCows Software Pick of the Week: Free FAX/Voicemail from your pc (also has a pro version with many additional features) Visit: V3, Inc for more information and download instructions. For comments, or questions please e-mail me at: Brewlly@optonline.net

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