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Jess's Top 5 Software Systems to Help Run Your Small Business

With so many software systems available to help run your small business it can be challenging choosing the right ones for you.   Here are my top 5!

1) Xero - it's no surprise that I LOVE Xero! The online accounting software system makes invoicing, bank reconciliation, and GST preparation easy! And that's just to name a few things. I could go on for ages about the amazing features of Xero (perhaps another blog), but here are my favourite five features:

  • Your bank transactions feed automatically into Xero for you to easily categorise

  • Clients LOVE that I can log into their Xero files and see what they see, and help with any issues

  • File your GST returns directly through the system to the IRD with the click of a button

  • Bulk pay bill invoices with their Batch payment feature

  • They have an app that allows you to invoice and reconcile your bank transactions directly from your Smartphone.

Absolutely my top pick!

2) Spotlight Reporting - Forecasting systems can be a fantastic tool, especially ones that integrate with your existing accounting software, such as Xero and MYOB.  Being able to Forecast not only helps with your cashflow, but gives you an idea of where your business is heading allowing you to make key business decisions.  They also help calculate upcoming GST and income tax liabilities.

However, they can also drive us nuts. Often riddled with bugs that can sometimes turn an hours job into days/weeks. Spotlight Reporting is definitely my pick of the bunch. It's not perfect, but the workarounds seem a lot easier than some of the other systems out there.  Special mention to Figured which is a great forecasting option for farmers;

3) Microsoft Excel - Sometimes Excel is all your need.  For businesses with a small amount of transactions (i.e less than 20 bank transactions a month), it's sometimes a better option than paying out for an accounting software system such as Xero or MYOB. Export your business transactions from your internet banking in Excel format and Filter-Sort-Pivot!  If you didn't understand that last sentence you may want to consider some Excel training first.  I consider myself pretty tech savvy and embrace change as much as I can, but sometimes you can't beat Excel for some tasks.  It's also great for analysing data. Most accounting software reports can be exported to Excel for easy analysis.  You won't be disappointed investing time into learning Excel;

4) Smartly - makes my list for top payroll system, just narrowly beating PaySauce.  Super easy to use, and free support when you need it. Once you have put in your employees hours for the pay run, with a click of a button, Smartly files your PAYE with the IRD, pays all your employees automatically, emails out your employees pay slips, and pays the IRD, meanwhile saving you hours each month.  Did I mention they even set it up for you? There's also an option for employees to submit timesheets for approval; and finally,

5) Hubdoc - If you have a lot of bill invoices that you need to bring into your accounting system, say hello to Hubdoc. Send your invoices to your personal Hubdoc email address, Hubdoc then extracts the key data from your invoices and populates the bill invoice fields required and attaches the original invoice to the bill invoice in your accounting system. How good is that?!  Hubdoc is FREE for most Xero users!  Bit of setup involved, but definitely worth the effort.

If you would like to learn more about any of the systems I have mentioned above, OR would like to discuss your systems and whether or not there may be better options for your business, please get in contact.