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Unifying your Financials with QuickBooks

Now more than ever it is vital for a business to centralize their financials. As you know, “commerce” now involves both brick-and-mortar stores and selling on multiple channels online. And that’s just the first layer of complexity—this year at QuickBooks Connect, I learned that the average SMB uses approximately 15 applications to manage their business.

 

Unfortunately, many businesses are still manually entering in much of their sales, inventory, and shipping data into their QuickBooks. But why? This method creates many problems, some of them include:

  • Human error
  • Time wasted
  • Money spent


The good news is, there are several apps out there to move data for you. The bad news is that many of these apps do not communicate with one another. Sure, there is ERP software out there that will take care of it all, but it’s generally designed for the enterprise level business and it’s expensive.

 

While an ERP may feel like a logical step for a maturing SMB, I would recommend waiting. If you are considering an ERP, it’s likely that you already have many of the necessary tools, but still struggle because those tools are not in sync. When your tools are not in sync, they cause a mess and confusion, which is more manual work.

 

There is now software that will unify these siloed applications and get them communicating together—also known as "middleware." The beauty of middleware is that it makes your existing applications more powerful and unlocks the full potential of your business applications, especially QuickBooks. By having cleaner, faster, and more accurate data in your QuickBooks you can save time, eliminate costs, leverage new financial insights to make better business decisions, and focus on growing your business.

 

Not all applications are made equal, and there is no one product that will do everything for you. However, there are applications that can do most of the heavy lifting automatically and make life easier for you and your accountant. Start your search on the Intuit App Store (apps.com), and filter by "data sync." From there you can start your evaluation and research. It’s not a bad idea to filter further and look at ProAdvisor top picks, since it will show you the applications most highly regarded by the pros that use them regularly.

 

For a slightly deeper dive into how to find ecommerce applications that make selling easier, check out this handy guide. And if you have any questions about how to unify your back-office systems, just ask. I’m happy to help!

 

Best of luck,

Dustin

 

6 Comments
Frequent Contributor

Re: Unifying your Financials with QuickBooks

Have you ever heard of Laceup Solutions? We use Laceup Solutions DSD program to import all of our invoices and credits to QBs right now. It works very well. 

Valued Contributor

Re: Unifying your Financials with QuickBooks


DustinT wrote:

 

Unfortunately, many businesses are still manually entering in much of their sales, inventory, and shipping data into their QuickBooks. But why? This method creates many problems, some of them include:

  • Human error (not limited to manual entry, auto entry also causes problems)
  • Time wasted (This is funny, have you scanned the community and seen the numerous posts about problems with banking downloads - talk about time wasted! And that is a built in QBO function, never mind the tme wasted trying to get another software to integrate)
  • Money spent (On what?  No app to subscribe to, no additional software to buy)


The good news is, there are several apps out there to move data for you. (at an additional cost )The bad news is that many of these apps do not communicate with one another. (as a result time is wasted trying them, fighting them, abandoning them and fixing what they messed up)  Sure, there is ERP software out there that will take care of it all, but it’s generally designed for the enterprise level business and it’s expensive.

Best of luck,

Dustin

 


 I learned that the average SMB uses approximately 15 applications to manage their business.

**bleep** I am glad to know that I am not average <smile>

 

 

Established Member

Re: Unifying your Financials with QuickBooks

@Rustler - thanks for the reply, these are some valid points, and precisely why it is important to do some research ahead of time.

 

To your points:

Human error (not limited to manual entry, auto entry also causes problems)

- Agreed, it’s possible any tool can cause problems if it isn’t setup correctly. Fast, cheap or good; pick two! While this is valiant, an investment upfront with some time and money will prove trustworthy in the long-run, and hopefully prove a solid ROI!

 

Time wasted (This is funny, have you scanned the community and seen the numerous posts about problems with banking downloads - talk about time wasted! And that is a built in QBO function, never mind the tme wasted trying to get another software to integrate)

- It is true it does take time to do your due diligence, but isn't that worth it to your other point of having to implement multiple software as trial and error. Not all software is created equal, and one piece of software is not meant for every business, but if you are lucky in your evaluation there will be one that just might make life easier for your business.

 

Hope you’re not still doing bank downloads! That’s a pretty outdated way to do it, Intuit themselves will recommend using a 3rd party rather than using their built-in feature.

 

Money spent (On what?  No app to subscribe to, no additional software to buy)

-Paying an employee to sit and manually enter data from one system to another is expensive, and a terrible use of a small businesses limited resources. It’s even more expensive when you have to pay an accountant to find the errors they made when trying to balance the books. If you’re doing any sort of real volume, you can’t afford not to automate it.



**Only the evaluator can determine what is the proper direction to take, for their personal situation. Some things are worth investing in for the long-term integrity and growth of a business. I see many people that try to patch their business together with "freemium" solutions and this tends to be where I see many problems. The other area I notice issues is when people get software they did not truly do a good job of evaluating. Some extremely valuable things to look for would be: support, reviews, product growth, account management team, analytics, and more.**  


It makes a big difference to talk with someone before making a purchase, self checkout is convenient and free trials are cool...but a quick convo about what the product does will go a long way in preventing you from wasting time in evaluating the wrong solution.

Community Host

Re: Unifying your Financials with QuickBooks

@DustinT, this is excellent food for thought. I especially liked your point:

 

"Only the evaluator can determine what is the proper direction to take, for their personal situation. Some things are worth investing in for the long-term integrity and growth of a business."

 

I totally agree. So much of "finding the solution" is about fit - whether that means choosing a program with good UI or a tool (in my case, a camera) with enough features at the right value. This defines our relationship to technology, whether we realize it or not. 

 

To your point about longevity and freemium, I've been reading a ton on Technical Debt lately and thinking about how the concept is applicable to everyone, not just software coders. Looking forward to hearing more.  

Senior Member

Re: Unifying your Financials with QuickBooks

Thanks for the article.

 

Unfortunately the reality of bookkeeping is a little different than Intuit and App developers would like it to be.

 

As for my clients, they think of it like:

1) I do not want to pay for another app

2) I don't want to have to learn another bookkeeping related thing

3) I don't want my data in the clouds

4) and many other complaints when I try to explain how this or that app could help them.

 

If they should see the value of an app, it goes like this: We sign them up, and there is no follow up on anything. Just like the majority of my clients, who have not even turned one single piece of document in. Bookkeeping is usually an afterthought for many.

 

The happier I am with a few clients who are on top and get the work done weekly. But they also don't want any more apps.

 

But, I will hang in there, and keep myself updated in the Wild Wild West of Apps and integrations.

 

 

 

 

 

Valued Contributor

Re: Unifying your Financials with QuickBooks


@LeahIlanah wrote:

Thanks for the article.

 

Unfortunately the reality of bookkeeping is a little different than Intuit and App developers would like it to be.

 

As for my clients, they think of it like:

1) I do not want to pay for another app

2) I don't want to have to learn another bookkeeping related thing

3) I don't want my data in the clouds

4) and many other complaints when I try to explain how this or that app could help them.

 

If they should see the value of an app, it goes like this: We sign them up, and there is no follow up on anything. Just like the majority of my clients, who have not even turned one single piece of document in. Bookkeeping is usually an afterthought for many.

 

The happier I am with a few clients who are on top and get the work done weekly. But they also don't want any more apps.

 

But, I will hang in there, and keep myself updated in the Wild Wild West of Apps and integrations.

  


As a business owner I can fully understand their viewpoint.


Every app in the world says it will save you time, but no one talks about the cost of that time, the time spent setting it up, integrating it, learning to use it, and at some point trying to figure out why there are problems with it. And you get to pay for that privilege too.


Running a business, accounting is maybe, maybe 5-10 percent of my day, and usually it is a catch up type of thing.  And the cost of operations continue to go up, adding in a subscription is not helping me to control costs.


And if I am paying an accountant to work with me (I personally do not) then why should I pay cash monthly to make their life easier - remember this is my perception of what you are wanting me to do.


Data in the cloud - ROFL - do you read the news? Companies with IT budgets that dwarf my total budget can not protect that data in the cloud - and I should trust it? Why? Just to make it easier for you to do your work, since with data in the cloud we no longer have to transfer files - again my perception.


Perception is reality.