The landscape for online accounting systems has matured, and we are now well into the third generation of cloud-hosted solutions. The biggest players in the market have had time to iterate, and they have integrated user feedback from previous generations to expand their available features and streamline usability. Read on for some of the best accounting cloud software packages available for Sydney accountants and Australian businesses in general.

Xero

This New Zealand-based company offers a relatively basic set of features in its core Xero product, with an extremely user-friendly interface for handling basic tracking of expenses and cash flow, along with invoice generation, integration with bank accounts and report generation. It’s the availability of many third-party extension apps that truly sets the software apart, however. Available extensions can be added to give Xero a depth of functionality on par with even the most expansive offerings from QuickBooks. CRM, inventory and employee management, and complex invoicing are just a few examples of the expanded functionality on offer. Xero has proven its dedication to providing a seamless platform experience between desktop PCs and mobile smartphone usage, making it a great choice for small businesses without a central office or whose employees often work remotely. Xero is the Pherrus choice, when it comes to Accounting Cloud Software.

FreshBooks

FreshBooks is an ideal solution for users who have little experience with accounting, as its default mode regularly provides pop-up hints and prompts for longer tutorials each time you start a task. It provides basic support for tracking expenses, handling custom invoices, tracking time and generating account and tax reports. Once you’ve grown comfortable with the base software, a wide variety of free and paid apps are available to extend FreshBooks’ functionality to add features like inventory management and automatic currency conversion. A free 30-day trial is available, with a monthly subscription fee for full-time use thereafter.

QuickBooks Online

QuickBooks Online is the company’s attempt to offer a streamlined, feature-lite option for small businesses with simple accounting needs. It’s available in three subscription tiers, with the first tier offering basic tracking of expenses and revenue, invoice generation and integration with a bank account to track bank transactions. The second tier adds bill management features and expands the number of available authorized users, while the third tier adds basic inventory tracking and management functions.

QuickBooks Enterprise Software

QuickBooks Enterprise is the company’s most popular online product and offers one of the most flexible accounting software solutions on the market. Its subscription levels provide several packages, ranging from simple expense tracking and report generation to multi-tiered integration with tax concerns and inventory or employee management. It allows users to scan a variety of documents to attach to the relevant records and features some of the best integration with Excel that you’re likely to find. It’s a good choice for small businesses that have a very vertical structure involving multiple vendors, manufacturing and retail concerns. The software is available as an on-site installation, but QuickBooks hosting allows the full program suite to be hosted online for a truly cloud-based solution.

NetSuite

NetSuite is in direct competition with QuickBooks for truly Enterprise-level accounting software, and retains its position as the largest cloud-based accounting provider by revenue. It offers a large variety of software solutions tailored to varying levels of complexity, and a huge number of add-on modules that can add functions like e-commerce integration, complex inventory management, and complicated report generation. It can tailor itself to the organizational role of the user, and it even provides an option to list what accounting software the user is most familiar with to provide the most seamless transition experience possible.

Explore the Cloud

Cloud-based accounting software packages can fulfill the needs of any small business, from simple one-person operations to complex organizations with multiple structural tiers and diverse integration requirements.

These are the thoughts and opinions expressed by Kris Prasad.

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