There are some critics of QuickBooks who refer to the software as “training wheels,” especially for newcomers still trying to figure out things on their own before moving up to a bigger, better suite of accounting tools.
This isn’t entirely fair since QuickBooks isn’t a bad program. It continues to be the standard for new owners of small businesses who are trying to learn the basics of money coming in and going out along with learning good habits of fiscal management. It’s also decent for established business owners who are comfortable with the basics but still need a little electronic guidance when things get a little more complex.
So perhaps a better analogy might be to think of QuickBooks as more of an average bike, maybe one of those basic affordable brands that you can get at any big box store and are good enough for the basics of getting around town.
But people who want to do more with their bike, say racing or maybe hardcore off-roading, might want something that’s more dependable, performs better, and does more of what you want. They don’t want good enough anymore—they want great.
That’s part of the appeal of NetSuite, which offers advanced accounting software for companies that may need tools and features beyond QuickBooks.
Even if you loved QuickBooks early on, you might find that it may not let you do everything you want as your company grows. Growth is good, but it’s disappointing to spend too much time making workarounds and extra steps, rather than moving ahead more productively.
Some satisfied NetSuite users will tell you that they eventually reached a point when their sentimental attachment to QuickBooks felt like it was holding them back from fully scaling up to a new level of organization and efficiency.
Why Consider Switching from QuickBooks to NetSuite
If you’re at the point in your business where it might be time to upgrade to a solution like NetSuite, you should consider making a pro and con list of both products and compare them to your organization’s current situation and anticipated future needs. What tools do you want and need? What is leaving you unsatisfied?
Factors can include:
1. General Ledger
NetSuite offers quite a few ways to customize your ledger info and drill deep into individual transactions. Product owners can set up a variety of fields to fit any metric your company wants or needs. They can also be associated with other worksheets, books, and invoices, making it easier to cross-reference customer info and make sure it’s current and accurate everywhere. One advantage here is that you can record all your information in one transaction chart which will move to other indicated areas such as revenue recognition, depreciation, expense amortization, and more. You can also add tracking details to improve being able to look up client information quickly. While QuickBooks offers basic GL features, it has a long way to go with being able to tag multiple items.
2. Inventory Management
Some accounting programs crunch numbers well, but companies may find that they need other software to keep track of product coming in and out in terms of supply and sales. Being able to merge both types of data can be useful for company owners and managers. NetSuite can provide real-time tracking of current inventory levels and future orders, as well as historical data. All of this helps with better decisions and a better bigger picture. It even includes warehouse management features which assist with tracking and multiple orders.
Learn more in our NetSuite Advanced Inventory Management Demo.
3. Revenue recognition
Putting in one type of revenue is easy, but then things can get complicated. What if you get a series of payments over time for the same purchase? What if you have several items bundled together? What if you have an identical transaction month after month? All of these can be solved easily by NetSuite but might not be done correctly by other programs. Where revenue is concerned, it’s important that every figure be 100% (or 110%) accurate since so much of a company’s activity is based on this. Rather than the workarounds that QuickBooks can supply, NetSuite can manage this information smoother including creating statements and forecasts.
4. Accounts Payable
One of the things many users have said they like about NetSuite is that it provides purchasing controls, which reduce risk and make sure proper financial controls and best practices are consistently followed. At the same time, it makes approval easier when exceptions do need to occur. Users of NetSuite can receive different roles but not given full control of the entire transactional approval process. It also allows accounting teams to be in different places for remote/work-from-home environments and provides tools to quickly see what’s missing if data entry errors are detected.
5. Accounts Receivable
More than one AR specialist has said, “it would be a lot easier if we let customers access their info.” With NetSuite, you can do this, or at least set up a secure area where customers can see their account info, including inventory, purchase orders, and general payment processes. There are also other ways to configure your dashboard to easily see details about current and past customers and any monies owed. This helps manage them and help provide payment in a timely manner. It also can keep track of the invoice process so customers are notified but not deluged. Products like contracts and future revenue can also be calculated. The SuiteBanking program even offers more tools. Although QuickBooks includes AR tools, it doesn’t make it easy to arrange schedules or offer downloads.
A busy company by nature does a lot of billing. While QuickBooks can handle these basic functions, NetSuite offers more options to bill well, including subscriptions, ratings, and consolidated invoices. Different prices or price structures can be established for individual customers, and automatic renewal can also be established. NetSuite’s SuiteBilling service can place multiple items onto one bill, which is convenient for customers. Customers can also be offered trial/temporary prices which can be automatically adjusted after the promotional term ends.
7. Fixed Asset/Lease Management
This feature makes it easy to keep track of any leased or owned assets, including their schedules, any interest or rent generated or owed, and general depreciation and disposal. While sometimes these items may seem like afterthoughts or not worth keeping track of, they can still be part of your overall inventory as well something that should be reported. Being able to document the lifecycle of these items can help your transparency and even your overall tax liability
QuickBooks is great for giving you the bottom line of general profitability, including any losses plus your general cash flow. If that’s all you need, that’s perfect. But things can be a more complex with multiple products from multiple divisions, or expansions into different countries that use different currency. NetSuite is able to provide more options for visualizing different data, from a general dashboard to a closer look at one product or one division.
Get the Full Guide: Eight Signs QuickBooks is Holding Your Business Back
For many businesses, QuickBooks can create time-intensive problems that add up to hours lost and opportunities missed. And now, more than ever, is the time to focus on increasing efficiency in your operations.
Download our guide, Eight Signs QuickBooks is Holding Your Business Back, to discover the top signs that QuickBooks is limiting your business and that it’s time to leverage a better, more comprehensive tool.
Click here to get the guide.
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MIBAR is happy to answer further questions about the value of NetSuite, as well as discussing other software solutions for you or your business. For more than 30 years, MIBAR has been offering a wide variety of opportunities to help businesses improve their productivity, improve efficiency, and save money. Schedule a free consultation to get started.