02 December 2020

Leverage technology to make sure your managing your finances efficiently

The beauty of accurate cash flow management is that you’ll know the precise amount of funds you have accessible at any given time. What makes this important is that when you make plans and decisions as a business owner, you have accurate information that you can use. Conversely, if there are things that you don’t track in your cash flow, you could be making bad decisions that can permanently compromise your business.

Not only will cash flow tell you the numbers, it will also tell you where those numbers go and for what reason. It’s very useful for a business owner to gain a better understanding of where the business is currently spending money. Why are you allocating that amount? What is the benefit? Have we been seeing that benefit? Is there any way to remove or reallocate the funds?

Below are some of digital tools in the market that can help you streamline your cash flow management.

Xero

New Zealand based company Xero offers cloud-based online accounting software for small businesses. As of 2019, Xero has around 1.82 million subscribers globally.

Xero is built on a double entry accounting framework and can easily be accessed from all types of devices. Its dynamic accounting features enable small businesses to view their cash flow, transactions and account details from any location.

Bank transactions are all automatically imported and coded. Online bill payments help keep track of spending and stay on top of bills due, improving relationships with the suppliers that provide critical business services. It also allows businesses to manage personal expenses with a mobile review and approval process of each receipt. Xero offers unlimited user support and integration with over 600 systems through its add-on marketplace.

The solution comes with a 30-day free trial period for product testing and feature evaluation. It provides three introductory pricing levels that kick in after a 30-day free trial.

Intuit QuickBooks

QuickBooks is another popular online accounting software. It comes with an attractive dashboard that puts key data such as income, expenses and profit and loss in front of you as soon as you log in. It als offers true double-entry accounting with ample reports and strong accounts charts, as well as customisable invoices, inventory capabilities, payroll support, multiple currencies, and over 400 integrations.

QuickBooks is regularly updated and one of the most recent updates the software received was the project management feature. These features include automatic sales receipts, split transactions, scheduled invoices, and location and class categories.

Check out QuickBooks’ plans and pricing here.

Bokio

Bokio is a free accounting software for small businesses, sole traders and freelancers. This tool lets you record receipts and other documents with step-by-step bookkeeping. It also offers unlimited invoicing with an invoice generator, where you can create, send, track and record them all in the same place.

The software is easy to use. It works by uploading a receipt and the AI helps by filling in the amounts, dates and numbers. Bokio is automated, so it reduces errors, saving time and money.

FreshBooks

FreshBooks started as an invoicing solution, but over the years, it has expanded in scope and grown into the go-to online accounting service for sole proprietors and startups. Its popularity extends to small-to-midsize businesses (SMBs).

The FreshBooks dashboard gives you a quick overview of your company’s financial status. There are 5 charts that you can see: Outstanding Revenue tells you who owes you money and who is behind on payments. Total Profit, of course, gives you a real-time number for your current profit or loss. You can change the date range for this graphic. Spending displays your expenses by category. FreshBooks added two more last year: Revenue Streams and Unbilled Time.

FreshBooks pricing starts at $15 per month for the Lite plan, which lets you bill up to five clients. See the other plans here.

Sage 50cloud

Sage 50cloud is a cloud-based accounting software for small business that has been primarily designed for desktop use. Businesses can share their financial data with their accountant and other users by storing it on the web-based Sage Drive. Although Sage has adopted the cloud, it still lacks integrated browser-based remote access for transaction entry and data retrieval.

The online accounting software is known to have the most thorough documentation and provides online and phone-based support, as well as professional advisers. Sage is a good choice if you want an online accounting tool with a strong feature set and exceptional customisability, especially in terms of inventory management.

Sage offers a free trial as well as Standard and Professional pricing.

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