Changes in technology are inevitable, and accounting is no exception. Looking back, accountants used an abacus, graduating to the calculator many moons later. Eventually Lotus 1-2-3 became the program of choice, which was then overtaken by Excel, with millions of people switching to Excel for accounting purposes.
As you can see, we’ve made a lot of progress from manual and sometimes archaic processes, so it begs the question:
Are you STILL using Excel for Accounting?
Now, before we go into a blinding rage against Excel for accounting, we will admit, it does have some great purposes in the workplace. But if you are still using Excel for accounting and bookkeeping, you need to be aware of some of the major pitfalls, and why great alternatives like Kashoo’s accounting software exist.
7 Reasons to Stop Using Excel for Accounting
When it comes to cloud based accounting software, you don’t have to worry about backing up your files, or ensuring “auto-save” is turned on, for that matter. When the power goes out there are no fears of unsaved worked, nor will you have to hunt down your I.T. person hoping there’s some way to retrieve that two hours of work you didn’t save.
There are also the possibilities of a hard drive crash with your local pc. It happens, and when it does we’re sure Murphy’s Law will be at play, crashing at the most inopportune time.
When you use Excel for accounting your books can get cooked - literally!
For starters, Excel isn’t free, you do have to pay for it. Second, what’s your time worth? Excel doesn’t come with pre-packaged “Excel For Accounting” templates, so you’re going to spend time finding your own. Add to that, you’re going to have to find one that works for YOUR business. Accounting software is already planned and developed by people who understand the ins and outs of accounting. Software like Kashoo is designed to fit just about any small business scenario.
Sure, that pirated copy of Excel was “free”, but was it really? Want something for free? Sign up for a free trial of Kashoo—Yarrr going to love it.
Why recreate the wheel? Building on the 2nd point above regarding cost, developers have already done what you’re trying to do. If you aren’t a developer, or have a strong grasp of VBA, it’s unlikely that you’ll get the same benefits from Excel for accounting as you would with existing accounting software.
Furthermore, do you know the limitations of Excel? How many rows and columns you can use? Accounting software is built using the proper databases with proper coding.
Wondering what VBA stands for? Then you definitely don’t want to use Excel for accounting.
When you use Excel for accounting, you’re going to have to build all the wonderful reports that come with pretty much every accounting software package on the
market. Hope you know how to create pivot tables, perform VLOOKUPS, run
macros, and create charts and graphs within Excel!
Have you seen Kashoo’s iOS reports? Talk about sweet! Let’s see Excel do that on your iPhone or iPad!
5. Health of Your Business
Building on reports, do you know how you can gain insights into the health of your business using Excel? The Income Statement report within Kashoo can do exactly that, focusing on specific suppliers, products, date ranges, and more. Based on the information in the Income Statement you can now make informed business decisions like:
- Should I keep trying to sell a product that isn’t selling?
- Do I need to better promote a product?
- What are my customers buying? (And when are they buying?)
Want to learn more about the health of your business? Check out our 4-Part Income Statement series.
6. Ease of Access
While we can’t speak for all of the competition, Kashoo’s accounting software allows for multi-users, and can also restrict users to a view-only level. In Excel, you’ll have to protect worksheets and potentially share passwords to unlock a sheet (hopefully it’s not the same password you use for banking). You also need to know who keeps a copy of the “Master” Excel file, who needs access to said file and how much access they need. And who’s backing up that file? Or perhaps this sounds familiar; Who removed the Balance Sheet template?!? I just spent six hours reconfiguring the macro with the new tax codes!
Cloud-based accounting software like Kasho is available whenever and wherever you need it, and for whomever you want.
7. Expertise and Support
As a small business owner, you expect people to pay for your product or service because of your expertise, that your product/service is reliable and that you stand behind it. The same goes for accounting software. Teams of developers fix bugs, strive for new and cutting edge ways of making things efficient or more user friendly. Support teams handle case after case to guide clients along and help make life easier. Try getting support from Microsoft if you’re using Excel for accounting.
Support via email, online chat, and phone (yes, we still talk to people) are part of your Kashoo subscription, as are regular updates. And when you get a new computer, laptop, iPhone or iPad, you don’t have to worry about re-installing software and copying over master files either.
By the way, have you seen the new iPad Pro 12.9”? Yep, hate to brag, but it totally works with Kashoo!
As mentioned, we have nothing against Excel—it’s a great business tool. But speaking of tools, would you mow an entire lawn with scissors just because you can, or would you buy a lawnmower? Use the right tool for the job!