Posted by Rebekah McLain on Wednesday, May 20, 2015 - 09:45
Upgrading business management software is no easy job. The decision requires an investment of time and your company’s resources. Changing systems can be a challenge for the entire office. So you want to do your due diligence in picking the right platform on the first try.
Here, we offer several tips to help you in making the best software choice:
1. Do your homework.
First, scour the software reviews to find out about price points and system requirements, and to compare and contrast your company’s needs with assessments from organizations that use the platforms. Search social media. Some consumers use Twitter to give software companies feedback — both positive and critical — on their products. Read through customer tweets with an objective eye. You might identify perks and pitfalls of a system you’re considering.
2. Poll the office.
Before switching business accounting software, make sure it does everything you need it to do. Poll your finance and accounting teams to find out the strengths and weaknesses of your current software. In doing so, they may help you identify characteristics in a new product that will make your company as a whole more productive.
3. Make it a team effort.
Ask your accounting and finance teams to research potential platforms, analyze software reviews and prepare reports on their top picks. These teams know what functions will help them streamline their processes, whether they’re working on an automated closing or preparing data-based reports. Employees who have a role in choosing business accounting software are more likely to embrace new technology, in contrast to the resistance that sometimes occurs when a major systems update occurs in the office without user input.
4. Bring in IT.
When you’re choosing a new business accounting software platform, you definitely want to bring in the key team members who will be administering and troubleshooting the launch. Partner with members of IT and your CIO throughout the process. Not only can they provide technical insight into the benefits of different systems, they can help you troubleshoot potential setbacks that may occur during implementation.
5. Reach out to your professional network.
Ask colleagues and query your associates in finance about which business accounting software they rely on. They can explain how they use the software — whether it’s HR-related or strictly financial — and offer candid assessments about the complexity or ease of using a given program.
6. Ask for a demo.
Contact the vendor and ask for a demonstration of the prospective software in action. Consider including your accounting team in the meeting so they can evaluate whether the software is capable of meeting the company’s needs.
The key to finding the ideal business accounting system is being well informed. When you know what the software is capable of, what your team needs it to do and whether you’ll experience any challenges in implementation, you’ll be better set to make the best decision.
Have you been poring over software reviews to determine what your next business accounting software will be? Share what you've learned in the comments section.