10 Signs You’ve Outgrown QuickBooks:

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#1 Rubber Bands Are Holding Your Business Together

If you have built your business on QuickBooks, you know it is a great entry-level accounting solution.  As your business flourishes, however, QuickBooks may not be able to keep up.  There are telltale signs you've hit your limits with your current systems and when those start to occur, it’s likely your future growth will be stifled until you step up to a more comprehensive business management solution.  

We have compiled a list of growing pains businesses like yours are facing when outgrowing QuickBooks.   In this blog series, we will address some of those common growing pains and how a business solution from Microsoft goes beyond entry level accounting software to keep you on the path of growth.

Rubber Bands and Sticky Notes Are Keeping You Up at Night
As your business grows, your financial data becomes more complex to collect and analyze, your supply chain isn’t the fine-tuned machine it used to be, and the many workarounds you and your team have put in place are starting to make you worried you won’t be able to keep up.  When manual data entry continues to rise, countless spreadsheets aren’t giving you the insight you need to make good decisions, and your people are reactive instead of proactive, it may be time to look to the future. When you find yourself using so many creative workarounds that managing your businesses seems more challenging and time consuming than it should be, it may be time to step up to a business management solution that is ready for the next stage of your growth. Comprehensive doesn’t have to mean complex.

Microsoft Dynamics is a complete, yet easy to use solution to help manage your entire business from financials, people, supply chain and customer relationship management, and it provides powerful business intelligence right from the start.

Travis Perkins, Director of IT for EMIT Technologies says, “We were relying on QuickBooks for basic accounting, but we needed to address long-term goals of our growing business and knew we would need a more robust solution that handled inventory management and manufacturing as well.” He continues, “With Microsoft Dynamics, we’ve evolved from managing each order individually as a one-off job, to a true manufacturing environment where we have greater insight and control while having uniform processes in place across the company.”

Thousands of customers have outgrown their entry-level accounting software and have turned to Microsoft Dynamics to support the next phase of their business. Download the
Outgrowing QuickBooks ebook and learn how a business solution from Microsoft can help keep your business going and growing.

 
10 Signs You’ve Outgrown QuickBooks:

#2 Managing Cash Flow Isn’t What It Used to Be

It was not too long ago that general ledgers and other financial data were kept by hand in notebooks or in rudimentary spreadsheets on the computer.  Basic accounting software soon followed, much to the pleasure of accounting departments everywhere.  QuickBooks was amongst the leaders to capture the accounting software marketplace and is used by many small businesses today.  While QuickBooks is great entry-level accounting software, it has its limitations and these limitations may now be hindering your overall business efficiency, profitability and growth.

Managing the Books and Cash Flow Isn't What It Used to Be
The days of checking off payments with a pen in the general ledger book are more than over; they're (thankfully) long forgotten.  Switching from manual calculations to automatic reconciliations, like those offered in QuickBooks, saves time and reduces common data errors.  However, as your business grows, you need to know more about your finances than what QuickBooks can provide.  You know you’ve outgrown QuickBooks when you have to manually combine cross-department or multiple business unit’s financial reports to figure out cash flow, budget and forecasting projections, and profitability. 

There comes a point when basic accounting software can’t provide the financial insight you need to support a growing business.  A business solution from Microsoft provides a complete solution for your business operations including financials, customer relationship and supply chain management, manufacturing, human resources and payroll, and more without the complexity of traditional enterprise resource planning (ERP) software. 

Joe Whitty, Controller, Amalfi Semiconductor says, “With reporting in Microsoft Dynamics GP, we consolidate our financial statements in five minutes, a process that used to take us a day.” He continues, “We filter and distill transactional data to help us with reconciliations, and export transactional information into an Excel spreadsheet so that executives can manipulate and analyze the data”.

An end-to- end view of your business in a solution will make it easier to track cash flow and expenses, create realistic forecasts, and make the swift, confident decisions that drive business growth.  In-depth financial insight, such as real-time access to expected costs, cash flow, and accurate revenue reports, are essential when determining the profitability of the products or services you offer.  You simply can’t get 360 degree insight from basic accounting software. 

Go beyond a backward looking system of record and look forward to a complete business solution from Microsoft to gain the financial insight that can take your business to new heights. Learn about the reporting and analytics capabilities of our solutions for small and midsized businesses by watching this
short video.
 
 
10 Signs You’ve Outgrown QuickBooks

#3 You’re Running a Risky Business

When you notice that numbers in the books have mysteriously changed, it is likely not a glitch, but a manual entry that was rewritten.  Many basic accounting software programs, QuickBooks included, allow any user to login and edit data as needed, without any restrictions or an audit trail.  Unless you keep a close eye on your data, these seemingly little changes can create a larger problem – inaccurate numbers and skewed data.  Making decisions based on inaccurate data can lead you in the wrong direction and introduce a whole new level of risk. 

Lack of Financial Controls and Audit Trails are Putting You at Risk     
When changes are made in QuickBooks, do you know who made those changes, when they were made, or even why they made that change?  If the answer is 'no' you may be putting your business at risk.  You won’t always be there, but not knowing who is making decisions on your behalf or having the ability to authorize the appropriate decision makers within your organization makes it difficult to have the proper control to protect your business. In addition, not having insight into certain decisions makes it difficult, if not impossible, to verify the reasons for the changes or the integrity of the resulting data.  You know you’ve outgrown QuickBooks when you can’t trust your data or provide a complete financial audit trail.

Protecting your data and putting the right controls in place is possible, and easy, with a business solution from Microsoft.  You can restrict access to confidential or sensitive portions of your data, such as proprietary data or customer credit card information, to directors and managers.  You can also provide each of your users with access to the software features that pertain to their immediate job tasks and restrict access to the remainder of your data and functions.  A business solution from Microsoft will help you track data changes, as well as control them.  With the introduction of forms requiring approvals for certain types of data changes or by creating alerts to notify managers and directors with each occurrence, records maintain their integrity.
 
Connie Silverman, Controller at Kauffman Center for the Performing Arts comments, “By using Microsoft Dynamics GP, we have all the insight and reporting tools that we need to work effectively with outside organizations and give them insight into our financial status. We’ve also streamlined the effort of producing monthly, quarterly, and annual reports. What’s more, the security features of our hosted Microsoft technologies are fantastic. We can easily set the proper controls so that only authorized persons can change certain records and confidential patron or donor information, such as credit card numbers, is safe from unwarranted viewing.”


Take a test drive or download the Outgrowing QuickBooks eBook to learn more about our cloud or on-premises solutions for small and mid-sized businesses. Interested in hearing from a Microsoft product specialist?  
 
 
10 Signs You’ve Outgrown QuickBooks:

#4 You Spend Too Much Time in the Past

Before you make any important business decisions, it is wise to check the books.  Can you afford to take on this project or will it strain the profit margin?  When using entry-level accounting software sometimes the answers don’t come as easily or quickly as the questions.  While you can draw financial data from QuickBooks, you still need details from procurement, manufacturing, and other departments to provide all of the information you need to move forward.  Constantly going back to the books and your managers means you are looking backward more often than forward. 

Looking Back isn't Helping Your Business Move Forward
According to a 2012 survey by Information Week Enterprise Applications, 24% of businesses hope to develop and deliver innovate products and services. In order to achieve this forward thinking approach to business, you need access to critical business data in order to make the timely business decisions that drive growth.  If you are unable to get your hands on detailed financial reports in real-time, then you never really know where your business stands.  Are you making money or losing money?  Is your profit margin high or are you just barely breaking even?  You know you’ve outgrown QuickBooks when you’re so busy looking at reports focused on a backward view of your business that you don’t have time for planning and capitalizing on your future.

A business solution from Microsoft can turn your attention around.  A comprehensive enterprise resource planning (ERP) solution will put all of your important data right at your fingertips without added complexity.  With quick access to financial, manufacturing, inventory, and other key data in less time, and with greater accuracy, you will not need to waste time calling managers or digging through the books.  Powerful and personalized business intelligence makes it even easier to make the smart, quick decisions that drive growth.  You can also spot trends with customers, suppliers, and internally that you can use to your advantage. 

Joe Whitty, Controller at Amalfi Semiconductor says, “With Microsoft Dynamics® … we can grow our sales and operations based on real insights into the actual needs of customers. If we had to do it all over again, we’d make the same choice.”

With more insight, you can boost profit margins by sharpening your supply chain, improving productivity, and optimizing cash flow.  Outperform your competition by being the quickest to respond to customer needs, knowing what your customers will want or need before they do and still maintain the profit you need to grow strong.  

Thousands of customers have outgrown their entry-level accounting software and have turned to Microsoft Dynamics to support the next phase of their business Attend the February 20th webcast: 
Don’t Just React to Change, Shape and Drive it with a Cloud or on Premises Solution from Microsoft Dynamics ERP to learn more. Until then, download the Outgrowing QuickBooks ebook and learn how a business solution from Microsoft can help keep your business going and growing. 
 
10 Signs You’ve Outgrown QuickBooks:

#5 You’re Putting New Business Opportunities Off

Part of nurturing a successful business is the ability to manage growth.  You will eventually add employees, suppliers and vendors, and a growing list of customers as your business matures.  Steady growth and expanding operations into a new state, or even a new country, creates a new set of challenges that basic accounting software, simply can’t handle.  If you are spending more time on redundant data entry, creating spreadsheets, and manually calculating varying sales taxes, then you are on a short road to data mishandling and mistakes.   

Don’t Let Systems Hold You Back 
QuickBooks can be limited in the comprehensive functionality growing businesses need to support multiple sales tax rates, multiple currencies, and the sophistication to deal with a global economy. QuickBooks can require extra data entry and the workarounds add time to complete your business processes. What should only take a few minutes or hours ends up taking days or longer. You know you’ve outgrown QuickBooks if you’re creating work-arounds to deal with business growth.

Adding new office locations, working with vendors in other states or countries, and transitioning to the global marketplace requires a scalable and robust business management system.  A Microsoft business solution can be just what you need to expand your reach. With the right technology, you can identify new business opportunities and not be afraid to take the steps to capitalize on new business growth.

Travis Perkins, Director of IT at EMIT Technologies notes, “Microsoft Dynamics provides us with a working strategy that fits well with developing and maintaining critical business solutions. Now we can focus on scaling our operation and developing new product offerings to support our customers.”

You can count on a business solution from Microsoft to help you streamline processes and grow your business.  See how in this
short video. Download the Outgrowing QuickBooks eBook to learn more about Microsoft’s cloud or on-premises solutions for small and mid-sized businesses.
 
 
10 Signs You’ve Outgrown QuickBooks:

 #6 You Have become a Jack-of-All-Trades

 
We are all called upon, on occasion, to wear different hats and be responsible for things that may be outside the realm of our traditional job tasks.  There is nothing wrong with learning something new and taking on additional responsibility, unless you are juggling more than what you can handle.  Just because you can balance your checkbook, doesn’t mean you can create detailed corporate financial reports or implement business application software.  There are some things that are better left to the experts, and that includes managing business technology.

You Need a Trusted Advisor to Take Your Business to the Next Level
It's hard to admit, but a lot of us are not experts at everything.  This is especially the case with technology and software implementations. And while you may be a great entrepreneur or business owner, mastering technology may not be your area of expertise.  

Microsoft's global partner network was created to provide users with the local support they need at the level of service they expect.  Certified Microsoft partners are able to do more than just sell and install your business management software.  These specialists can help you determine which software best suits your business needs, create or package solutions to serve your specific industry needs, and get you up and running quickly with productivity right from the start.  Microsoft partners offer flexible cloud or on premises licensing options that reduce the need for capital expenditures, as well as provide technical support now and far into the future.  You can get the business software you need at a price you can afford.  Support doesn’t end after deployment.  By leveraging Microsoft’s partner network, you will have access to experts that can answer simple questions, provide follow-up service, as well as teach you how to optimize your software to a competitive advantage. 
You don’t need to be a ‘jack-of-all-trades’, just a master of your own business.  Let the experts provide you with the technology you can use to drive growth.  Watch this
short video to learn more about the value a Microsoft Dynamics partner can bring to your business. Then see the product in action, or learn more about Microsoft’s cloud or on-premises solutions for small and mid-sized businesses.
 
10 Signs You’ve Outgrown QuickBooks:

#7 Cloud Computing Has You Questioning Your Technology Footprint

 
Technology has, obviously, changed our world and continues to make a profound impact on how we do business every day. For example, what once held small businesses back has been made possible with software and services now available through cloud computing. Although QuickBooks is available online, there are a number of other affordable deployment options now available bringing down the cost of more comprehensive business management solutions.


When it Comes to Your Business You Want Flexible Deployment Choices       
The number one reason organizations move to the cloud is so they can experiment easier at a lower cost
(Harvard Business Review Report: How the Cloud Looks from the Top: Achieving Competitive Advantage in the Age of Cloud Computing), but security is typically a top concern for organizations. Naturally, the systems that run your business needs to be accessible anytime, from anywhere to allow for flexibility, but only to those granted access to that information. Some organizations ease this concern by taking a hybrid approach to cloud computing, putting some of their data in the cloud while other data remains on-premise. But not many business solutions offer this type of flexibility.

 Business solutions from Microsoft offer choices whether cloud, on-premises, or a combination of both is right for your business.  Microsoft and our partners can deliver on your terms, making sure you have a solution that fits your needs. Here are just a few of the choices with Microsoft business solutions:

  • On-Premises: software is installed and run on dedicated servers in-house. Under this model, the company owns and services the hardware infrastructure and the installed software licenses.
  • Public Cloud: the solution takes a web-hosting model in which the data and application resides in a remote server and can be accessed via an Internet browser or non-browser applications for your mobile or tablet devices. Public cloud offers a shared or multitenant infrastructure that may be virtualized and is owned by the vendor or the service provider. The customer typically rents the ERP software and infrastructure, and is charged on a pay-per-use or pay-per-user basis.
  • Private Cloud: adopts the virtualized, self-service model of the public cloud; however, it typically does so within the company’s firewall and is located at the company or vendor-hosted datacenter. The company either owns the ERP software and infrastructure, or vendors may provide an option for leasing this as a service. An important distinction from the public cloud model is that the service is provisioned exclusively for an organization (i.e., single tenancy) without any sharing of infrastructure among multiple customers.
Connie Silverman, Controller at Kauffman Center for the Performing Arts says, “By using cloud-based Microsoft technologies, including Microsoft Dynamics, we generate substantial savings and efficiencies; practice transparent, sound financial management; and bring outstanding performing-arts events to a growing numbers of patrons.”

Read this customer case study to see how a cloud deployment delivered significant benefits to their organization. Not sure if a cloud deployment model is right for you? View the on-demand webcast ERP On Premises or in the Clouds: What’s Right for My Business?
 
10 Signs You’ve Outgrown QuickBooks:

 #8 You’re Losing More Business Than You Realize

Your business is growing and with that growth, you're dealing with more orders, higher customer demands, and increased competition. If you’re feeling out of breath trying to catch up, then your systems are feeling stressed as well. The way your people work is changing too. There's no doubt about it, QuickBooks is very easy to use, and you may be worried about the complexity of a more robust solution, but a more powerful solution for your business is waiting, one that works the way you do, improving productivity while scaling to fit your growing requirements.

System Limits Not Keeping Up with Business Opportunities
While you were busy managing the growing demand for your products and services and meeting the increasing needs of your customers, you may not have noticed you are quickly approaching user or transaction limits in place within your QuickBooks software. Now is the time to begin the search for solutions to manage the next chapter in your business.
The best solutions for business are simple, usable, and flexible—and they're also from Microsoft. Microsoft Dynamics gives small and mid-sized businesses, like yours, complete control over your core business processes. Our business management solutions are easy to use and easy to deploy. So you can quickly, simply, and finally transcend the limits of your overworked and undersized accounting software.

  • People get it. Microsoft Dynamics looks and works like Microsoft Office. That means everyone can jump right in and get to work.
  • It's on your terms. With Microsoft Dynamics, your team can work when and where it works best—at the office, at home, or on the road. Cloud and on-premises deployments give you the flexibility to choose what’s best for your business.
  • It reduces your risk. After decades of experience and thousands of successful projects, our local implementation partners are there with you every step of the way. With RapidStart Services, implementations can take less time and less money than going through a manual setup. And you can import data from your legacy accounting system, so you can be up and running in fewer hours and with less risk.

 Travis Perkins, Director of IT at EMIT Technologies says, “For more than five years, Microsoft Dynamics has supported us as we have grown from 17 to more than 110 team members. The latest release, Microsoft Dynamics GP 2013, will add new capabilities that we will use to improve strategies in every process across the company.”

Watch this short video to
see why a business solution from Microsoft is the right choice for your growing business. And join us for the upcoming webcast: Ready, Set, Grow Your Business with Better Business Insight and Reporting
 
10 Signs You’ve Outgrown QuickBooks: #9 Your People and Systems Can’t Keep Up
Sure with QuickBooks you’ve gone beyond a pen and paper to automate processes and better manage your business. Although the familiar clicking of keyboards may sound productive, disparate software programs reduces the productivity of your people and limits insight into overall business operations. 

Your People Don’t Have the Tools They Need to Succeed
Your business needs people and your people need powerful tools. If you're using your most valuable asset, your employees, to enter and reenter data into QuickBooks and other business software programs, then you could be losing money in more ways than you know.  Redundant data entry not only takes time, it can lead to mistakes and bad data.  You know you’ve outgrown QuickBooks when your team is handling data multiple times and taking more steps than necessary to get through their everyday tasks.  Help your team work smarter, not harder.  Imagine handling everything from financials, project and services management, to human resources and payroll in one robust solution.  This comprehensive insight will connect your team and strengthen communication which is stifled by disparate software programs.  An integrated solution will reduce repetitive data entry and protect data integrity, saving time and improving productivity.  Your people will also be happier when they can spend their time making business decisions instead of mindlessly entering data over and over again. 

 That’s where we come in. The role-tailored experience of Microsoft Dynamics gives your people access to information- the right information. And when your people can get their hands on data specific to their day-to-day jobs, they can be even more productive at the office, at home, or on the road. What makes it even better? It’s the fact that Microsoft Dynamics works like and with the Microsoft Office productivity tools they already use. So your team can get started quickly and become efficient even faster.
 Ron Wollner, President, Computer Data Source says, “We quadrupled our business without adding people to the finance and IT departments.” He continues, “Much of the credit for that goes to our use of Microsoft Dynamics.”

Transform the way you work and support your most valuable assets to improve productivity and drive business growth. Take the next steps to
see the product in action and download the free Replacing QuickBooks ebook to learn how a business solution from Microsoft can keep your business going and growing. 
 
 
10 Signs You’ve Outgrown QuickBooks:

#10 Accounting Software is Holding Your Business Back

According to the Small Business Association, since 1990, big business has eliminated jobs while small businesses added jobs- 8 million to be more accurate! Are YOU ready to grow? If you're finding it hard to meet customer’s expectations, keep up with business demand, or just simply can’t close out each month without pushing your team to the brink, then it's time to make a change.

 Your Entry-Level Accounting is Holding you Back
QuickBooks can hold you back in more ways than one. As we’ve discussed in this blog series for 10 weeks, limited scalability, manual processes, and downtime can create obstacles for your business instead of paving the way for success. You know you’ve outgrown QuickBooks if you’re ready to admit your entry-level accounting software is holding you back!
 Travis Perkins, Director of IT for EMIT Technologies, “We were relying on QuickBooks for basic accounting, but we needed to address long-term goals of our growing business and knew we would need a more robust solution that handled inventory management and manufacturing as well.” He continues, “With Microsoft Dynamics, we’re now in a position where we’re better prepared to accept projects we wouldn’t usually manufacture. There’s a good chance we’re designing something new every day.”


 No matter what kind growing pains you’ve experienced in the past, you can grow beyond your current limits with a business solution from Microsoft. Microsoft has a complete vision for business applications, and it goes well beyond what traditional stand-alone ERP (enterprise resource planning) can do. It starts with a unique combination of business intelligence, collaboration, and communication tools embedded across your core business processes. The result—proactive people who make decisions that help increase your margins, improve your cash flow, and ultimately drive your business growth.




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