Picking an accounting software is a key task for any company. You need to choose one that is easy to operate for a non-accounting person (as a lot of business owners are) and one that is innovative.
We are regularly asked why we recommend Xero accounting software above Sage, Quickbooks, or one of the popular accounting products in Ireland.
For us, it comes down to three reasons we have chosen Xero for our clients.
- Xero is the easiest accounting system to use for SMEs in the Irish market.
- Xero combines a company on a global scale with a consistent level of innovation in their product.
- Xero can be used to improve our clients’ overall business workflow and allows them to see how their company is performing financially at the touch of a button.
Ease of use beats functionality 9 times out of 10
We’ve implemented IT systems for multinationals and run global technology projects and we have yet to find a perfect IT system for a business.
Ultimately, you need to balance a system’s feature with how easy it will be to implement and run.
All too often companies are focused on features and not enough on ease of use.
Easy to use systems tend to:
- Be used properly with fewer errors.
- Be easy to learn, reducing the time and cost required for training.
- Improve job satisfaction for your staff and as a result, have less sick leave.
A common concern with Xero for the Irish market is the lack of a specific Irish VAT reporting feature.
Obviously, it would be better if that feature was included in the product. However, we have designed a quick workaround so the relevant VAT report can be generated correctly.
Basically, VAT reporting is a minor inconvenience rather than a reason to not use the system. On the other hand, we find Xero a very easy system for new users to learn. The user interface is clear and well laid out. Generating invoices, bookkeeping, generating reports and the other key features of an accounting system are easy to follow. And the training guides and videos provided by Xero, as part of the package, are excellent. This makes it a far more likely system for our clients (and our own team) to use properly.
Considerations When Choosing A New System
When you are making a decision on the best system for your business, you need to ask yourself the following questions.
Will this company, the one that owns the accounting platform still be around in 2/3 years?
Does this company have a roadmap of new features planned for this system that will make it even better?
On both fronts, Xero stacks up well. It’s a global company, which is listed on the stock market with over 2 million clients.
They have driven innovation in accounting systems for SMEs globally. While Sage and Quickbooks are also big businesses, they have been behind Xero in terms of their SaaS (Software as a Service) accounting products. This could change and Quickbooks in particular has been making improvements.
However, both are ultimately trying to improve the multiple accounting systems they own at the same time while Xero can focus its energies on its core product. This becomes apparent when you see the number of improvements they have made to the system over the last few years.
In summary, Xero combines a big global company with a constantly improving product – a good combination.
aperio is a Cork-based outsourced accounting and consulting company that can take care of all your bookkeeping, management accounting, financial compliance, and financial project work such as grant applications.
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