Friday, August 22, 2008


Back in May I wrote about accounting systems (What Accounting System Should I Choose?) where I talked about accounting systems for startups.

I can't stress enough about the value and importance of getting the right software and creating appropriate systems.

Yesterday I was at a new client's office helping them set up some industry specific software to interface with QuickBooks. They called me because of my QuickBooks expertise and to see if I could help them with the integration. I went to help despite no previous knowledge of this specific third party application.

Prior to me setting up their new system, they spent hours, upon hours writing up invoices, POs, and work orders to run their business. Now they can do these same tasks in minutes and have better records and a far more professional appearance to their customer using their new software.

The business owner was also spending at least a day/month reconciling his VISA/MC deposits, while being completely frustrated at the process. I also got him set up with QuickBooks merchant services so these tasks can be automated in the future. This change will probably cost him an additional $25/month but he will free up an entire day and eliminate a major source of frustration. A poorly designed system had him pulling his hair out.

The industry software he acquired (Mitchell 1) costs about $250/month but it allows him to go from being an amateur to working like a professional overnight. I'll bet this software has an off the chart ROI for him as he goes forward. It was clear that his business was severely hamstrung trying to operate on QuickBooks as he fought to make his system function. Now he has an elegant system that works for him and will give him the information he needs to run his business.

While these additional costs are significant to a startup, a good business must invest money to make money and his investment in the proper systems should pay huge dividends.

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