If you have paid any attention to the state of software recently, you have heard terms such as “in the cloud” or “Software as a Service” (SAAS) and probably wondered “what the heck is this trend?” Do I need to go back to grade school science and remember the difference between stratus and cumulus cloud formations? Fear not – this cloud is not a portent of meteorological change. It simply means that the application software no longer resides on your computer or server. Rather, the application is available via the Internet, allowing for ubiquitous access. Another advantage of a cloud based application is that the version updates, software patches, data backup and regular care and feeding of the app is the responsibility of the service provider.
As we prepare for taxes over the next several weeks, we thought we would share with you the ‘Bakers Dozen of Lucky 13’ cloud based bookkeeping and accounting tools that you may want to consider to help you keep your business records up to date. This is not intended to be a comprehensive list, nor do we recommend one tool over another. Rather, it is intended to provide a starting point to the wide world of cloud computing alternatives.
1. FinancialForce.com – A cloud-based financial suite that’s affiliated with SalesForce and that integrates with this CRM.
2. Freeagent Central – UK based bookkeeping tool targeted to freelancers, contractors and small businesses.
3. Intacct – Award-winning accounting software that’s used by over five thousand organizations and touts integration with Salesforce.com as well.
4. Kashoo – Kashoo offers accounting and bookkeeping in the cloud, integration with FreshBooks and targets the creative and IT consulting industry. MAC and iPad compatibility.
5. Less Accounting – Less Accounting believes that accounting should be easy. While they acknowledge that all accounting software has issues, they claim to have less – and to save you 80% of your time in managing your books.
6. Netsuite – Used by 12,000+ organizations worldwide, NetSuite delivers accounting/Enterprise Resource Planning (ERP), Customer Relationship Management (CRM), Professional Services Automation (PSA) and Ecommerce—in a single, integrated business management software solution.
7. Outright –Outright’s founders came from Intuit and have a strong funding relationships with several venture capitalists. Their mission is to streamline the work involved with running a small business, by helping entrepreneurs pay the right taxes, organize their income and expenses, and keep their businesses on track.
8. Pavintheway – Manage your entire company from this full-featured robust online accounting package that supports some customization.
9. Perfect Books – Automated online bookkeeping application that targets the legal profession.
10. Quickbooks Online – QuickBooks is one of the best-known and most trusted brands in accounting. This is their hosted online product offering.
11. Skyclerk – SkyClerk had been an internal tool for its parent company, Cloudmanic Labs. In the spring of 2010 SkyClerk was released to the public, presenting a free version and a paid version. iPhone and Android apps are available.
12. Wave Accounting – Spreadsheets and shoeboxes full of receipts are a pain. Wave gets you on top of your accounting, fast and easy, so that you can spend your time on…well…anything other than accounting. And Wave is totally free – they call it “un-pricing”.
13. Yendo – Yendo is financial accounting software for small business. It has everything you need to manage invoicing, purchases, expenses and payments. With a Web 2.0 approach to finance, Yendo plays nicely with mobile devices and third-party cloud services.
This sampling of cloud-based accounting applications demonstrates that there is an online version for just about every type of business. Managing your books in the cloud can be a more practical and flexible option for your business needs. And if managing your books still makes you feel that you need to batten the hatches for that incoming storm, Cybertary is here to help.