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Business/Personal Accounting Software

I am a sole proprietor in Canada, growing my own small software company (no employees yet, just me).  My all day research has led to nothing more then confusing me even more regarding an appropriate Small Business Accounting package.  I would appreciate some recommendation in what people within similar situations have used successfully to manage their business accounting, and since being a sole proprietor, ties into their personal financing as well.  My last accounting class was in high school, and I have no interest in becoming a CA.  I need the tools to aid me efficiently and especially during the tax season.  Once I near the $1million dollar mark, then I'll think about getting someone else to deal with it.

sedwo
Tuesday, March 16, 2004

Do you have an accountant and does he recommend something? The one accountant I've talked to said that most of his clients use QuickBooks.

Christopher Wells
Tuesday, March 16, 2004

QuickBooks


Tuesday, March 16, 2004

MYOB. 

Lou
Tuesday, March 16, 2004

I used to use Quickbooks but hated the registration procedure and how difficult it could be to do things outside the norm. I've been quite happy just using a multi-sheet workbook in Excel to handle things.

Gerald
Tuesday, March 16, 2004

Excel!!!!!

--
ee

eclectic_echidna
Tuesday, March 16, 2004

Last I heard, Intuit (makers of Quickbooks) bought MYOB Canada, and dropped support for all but the Mac version, which is now repackaged as "QuickBooks Accounts for Mac"

Chris Altmann
Tuesday, March 16, 2004

My wife is a bookkeeper. Right now she does 11 different clients with QuickBooks. One client is a "software house" with 4 principals, 4 additional full-time employees and about 30 contractors.  Her advice is to keep good records however you choose to do it. But most folks who have some success don't have time to do all their own bookkeeping or to make sure they are doing it right.

So, you end up visiting a CPA who consults, getr the financial things right, and perhaps suggests a bookkeeper (e.g. my wife). Then the bookkeeper takes all your messy records, reconciles them, inputs them into Quickbooks and does your books from then on. Some clients enter much of their own data into QuickBooks and ship the file back to the bookkeeper for her magic - such as payroll, W-2's, or 1099's.

I wish such success that you reach the 2nd paragraph.

tk
Tuesday, March 16, 2004

I've used QuickBooks personally and though it's not perfect it did the job for me.

I've worked for a company that used MYOB and it's interface is nowhere near as user-friendly as QB.

I currently work for a company that uses Peachtree, and its stupid proprietary version of the BTrieve database plays havoc with our business information system which uses a different version of Pervasive (BTrieve for client/server).  We have to install an earlier version of the Pervasive client on every machine that must also have Peachtree installed.

I don't much care for Intuit's continuous marketing crap in QB either, but I think their product is better than either of the others I mention.  I'd echo the others' advice and recommend QB.

Karl Perry
Wednesday, March 17, 2004

MYOB or quickbooks are the main contenders.

BUT, the excel comment was a very good one, I always think people with no bookkeeping experience are best starting with a ledger book and pencil. I worked for an accounting firm who prefered pencil and paper to any other method.

>Her advice is to keep good records however you choose to do it

tk's comments was good, if you attempt to use an accounting package and botch it, well it is going to be more costly as the bookkeeper tries to figure out what you have done.

Aussie Chick
Wednesday, March 17, 2004

I am in a similar situation and use an Excel spreadsheet, with frequent hardcopy printouts. Money is far too important to be trusted to computer software. ;)

Dan Maas
Wednesday, March 17, 2004

First off - pay special special attention to GST, otherwise you'll get screwed by RevCan (sorry, CCRA).  Even if you're very very careful, you'll probably screw it up and they'll take your money.

Then, depends on how much time or money you have to do your accounting, consider:

Set up simple spreadsheets in Excel that you understand that keep track of all money in and out. When necessary (tax season) send all your info to an accountant, let them sort it out into acceptable format for taxes, etc., and pay them.

Get quickbooks or equivalent, learn how to use it, learn enough about accounting to understand what it's doing, enter all your data, print out standard profit/loss, income/expense, etc. as needed.  Get QuickTax T2 every year and do your taxes with that.

Learn more about accounting, set up your own complicated spreadsheets, do your own statements, but still do your taxes with software.

Note that if you make money, you should pay an accountant to do or at least submit your taxes.  I despise CCRA because this is essentially a protection racket: you're less likely to be audited if an accountant does your taxes.

Personally, I'd say if you're making money, long before you reach the million dollar level, you'll have to either pay accountants to keep the bastards at CCRA from screwing you or you'll have to put a lot of time into doing it yourself.

Ward
Wednesday, March 17, 2004

I'm going to give a vote against Peachtree Accounting (even though no one has suggested it).  The behemoth of a software package is fair, but dealing with the company and their customer support has left a very bitter taste in my mouth.

Elephant
Wednesday, March 17, 2004

We've used QB for years. It's been great.

I wish someone would come out with an equally capable CRM program. (We use GM and it sucks, but it's better than anything else I tried).

Mr. Analogy
Wednesday, March 17, 2004

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