May 19, 2020

Hints and tips for choosing the right financial software

Finance Software
Financial Management
Joyce Morse
3 min
Hints and tips for choosing the right financial software

Whether running a one-person show, a small business with a few dozen employees or a larger company that employs hundreds or even thousands of people, CEO’s, managers and business owners can use financial software to help their companies save money.

These programs do more than just give you facts and figures; some even provide predictions and offer suggestions that can be beneficial for now and the future.

Options for every business

Today, numerous financial programs and applications exist to fit every size of company in every industry. Some are designed to function specifically for a single industry, while others like QuickBooks or FreshBooks are broad enough to work for many organizations.

In addition, many of these programs can be downloaded onto a computer.

Others are web-based, making them ideal for the business manager that wants information from anywhere.

These programs come in a wide range of prices and include many features. It can take some time and research to find the right one for a company, but the effort is worth it.

It's like having another employee

Many of these programs offer features that handle tasks automatically.

For instance, they can be set up to send out automatic invoices based on accounts receivable or make automatic payments from accounts payable. This cuts down late fees that you would incur if you forget to pay a vendor on time.

It also increases the likelihood that your customers will pay faster if they get a timely invoice before they forget about the services you provided.

Instead of paying someone to do these tasks manually, they can be handled automatically with the program.

All the manager has to do is oversee that everything is working correctly. This can cut down on the amount of staff needed, which is especially helpful for a small or new business that may not have the income to add new employees.

Managing your finances

Every business owner must manage his finances whether he has a lot of expenses or just a few.

As the article “Free Financial Software: How to Get It” notes, small changes can make a big difference in your budget.

You can use applications to give you predictions about your money for next year, five years from now and even farther into the future.

Many of them even give you the ability to play with different scenarios to see how various actions can affect the bottom line. Change one number and see what it does to your revenue or how it can increase or decrease your profit.

The right application can even help you manage large projects and ensure you are staying on budget. It can send out alerts when you are getting close to your limits on various categories and ensures you don't go over your budget or lose money.

No matter how large or how small your business is, you can benefit from using the right financial software. It can help you save money by managing payments and monitoring expenses.

Because your finances play an important role in the success of a business, it is essential that this aspect not be overlooked.

Joyce Morse is an author who writes on a variety of topics, including business and financial software.

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Jun 8, 2021

Six issues at the top of tax and finance leaders’ agenda

Kate Birch
4 min
As businesses accelerate their transformation journeys, tax leaders are under increasing pressure to add strategic value. Deloitte reveals six tax trends

New Deloitte research reveals that tax leaders are under increasing pressure to add strategic value as companies accelerate business model transformation, from undergoing digital transformations to rethinking their supply chains or investing in green initiatives.

According to Phil Mills, Deloitte Global Tax & Legal Leader, to “truly deliver value to the business, the tax function needs to rethink its resourcing model and transform its technology infrastructure to create capacity and control costs”.

And the good news, according to Mills, is that tax and business leaders have more options at their disposal to achieve this.

Reflecting the insights of global tax and finance executives at global companies, Deloitte’s Tax Operations in Focus study reveals the six issues at the top of tax and finance leaders’ agenda.

Trend 1: Businesses seek more strategic counsel from tax

Companies are being pushed to develop new digital products and distribution channels and accelerate sustainable transformation and this is taking them into uncharted tax territory. Tax leaders say their teams must have the resources and skills to give deeper advisory support on digital business models (65%), supply chain restructuring (49%) and sustainability (48%) over the next two years. This means redrawing the boundaries of what tax professionals focus on, and accelerating adoption of advanced technologies and lower-cost resourcing models to meet compliance requirements and free up time.

According to Joanne Walker, Group Tax Director, BT Group PLC, "There’s still a heavy compliance load today, but the vision for the future would be that much of that falls away, and tax people become subject matter experts who help program the machine, ensure quality control, and redirect their time to advisory activity.”

Trend 2: Tipping point for resourcing models

Business partnering demands in the tax department are on the rise, but 93% of tax leaders say their department’s budget is remaining flat or falling. To ensure that the tax function can redefine itself as a strategic function at the pace that is required, leaders are choosing to move increasing amounts of compliance and reporting to a combination of shared service centers, finance departments, and outsourcing providers that have invested in best-in-class technology.

Trend 3: Digital tax administration is moving faster than expected

in addition to the rising focus of the corporate tax department partnering with their business counterparts, transformative changes to the way companies share tax information with revenue authorities is also creating an imperative to modernize operations at a faster pace. Nine in 10 (92%) respondents say that shifting revenue authority demands on digital tax administration will have a moderate or high impact on tax operations and resources over the next five years—and several heads of tax said the trend is moving faster than expected.

"It’s really stepped up in the last couple of years," says Anna Elphick, VP Tax, Unilever. "Tax authorities don't just want a faster turnaround for compliance but access into a company’s systems. It's not unreasonable to think that in a much shorter time than we expect, compliance will be about companies reviewing a return that's been drafted by the tax authorities."

Trend 4: Data simplification and lower-cost resourcing are top priorities

Tax leaders said that simplifying data management (53%) and moving to lower-cost resourcing models (51%) must be prioritized if tax is to become more proactive at delivering strategic insights to the business. Many tax teams are ensuring that they have a seat at the table as ERP systems are overhauled, which is paying dividends: 56% of those that have introduced NextGen ERP systems are now highly effective at supporting the business with scenario-modeling insights. Only 35% of those with moderate to low use of NextGen ERP systems said the same.

At Stryker, “we automated the source P&L process for transfer pricing which took a huge burden off of the divisions," says David Furgason, Vice President Tax. "Then we created a transfer price database to deposit and retrieve data so we have limited impact on the divisions. We are moving to a single ERP platform which will help us make take the next step with robotics.”

Trend 5: Skillsets are shifting

Embedding a new data infrastructure and redesigning processes are critical for the future tax vision. Tax leaders are aligned — data skills (45%) and technology process experience (43%) are ‘must have’ skills in a tax department of the future, but more traditional tax specialist knowledge also remains key (40%). The trick to success will be in tax leaders facilitating the way these professionals, with their different backgrounds, can work together collectively to unlock lasting value.

Take Infineon Technologies, which formed a VAT technology and governance group "that has the right knowledge about how to change the system to ensure it generates the right reports", according to Matthias Schubert, Global Head of Tax. "Involving them early was key as we took a greenfield approach, so we could think about what the optimal processes would look like and how more intelligent systems could make an impact 

Trend 6: 2020 brought productivity improvements

Improved productivity (50%) and accelerating shifts to remote working (48%) were cited as the biggest operational benefits to emerge from COVID-19-driven disruption. But, as 78% of leaders now plan to embed either hybrid or fully remote models in the tax function long term, 34% say maintaining productivity benefits is a top concern. And, as leaders think about building their talent pipeline and strengthening advisory skill sets, 47% say they must prioritize new approaches to talent recognition and career development over the next two years, while 36% say new processes for involving tax in business strategy decisions must be established.

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