What is the easiest accounting software to learn when you are first starting out?
I know a lot of people use QuickBooks. Is this the best accounting software for new businesses (i.e. is it the easiest accounting software to learn)? Is there something else easier and more cost effective, or should I go with what seems to be widely used?
For U.S. based entrepreneurs, we like QuickBooks with Enhanced Payroll. We think it is one of the easiest accounting software to learn and also one of the most cost effective. Also there is widespread support for the program across accountants and CPAs.
In Q4 (usually in December) you can buy QuickBooks with Enhanced Payroll with an annual subscription included for less than $200 from places like Staples. Most accountants can import an accountant copy of QuickBooks’ files and can help you quickly and easily and also inexpensively, tweak any issues you may have with the setup.
The QuickBooks with Enhanced Payroll option includes direct deposit, electronic filing of tax forms, FUTA, State Unemployment, etc. and keeps you current with all payroll tables. As a busy entrepreneur, this is really important. You can stay compliant with Federal and State tax and reporting requirements with a minimal amount of work. Also, if you have a question, QuickBooks provides support included with the subscription fee. For each additional employee you may add its $2 per month for payroll processing. The first employee (you) is included in the base subscription fee.
Also, rather than renew each year at a higher price, you can purchase the new version of QuickBooks with Enhanced Payroll every 4th Qtr and then provide Intuit with the new activation key over the phone on the expiration date (it has to be the day it expires or later) and you can maintain a solid solution at a very inexpensive price point (in our opinion).
If you do go with QuickBooks, we recommend having an accountant or CPA review your information at a minimum annually, but preferably quarterly to make sure you are handling everything correctly. Usually after 1 complete cycle (4 quarterlies and 1 annual reporting period), you will have it down. We have been doing this process for several years with success.