Our trusted advisers at Aqilla have been supporting and guiding organisations through their Cloud-based accounting journeys since 2006. For many mid-market organisations, understanding the differences between on-premise solutions, legacy Cloud systems and true, designed-for-Cloud platforms is a daunting task. That’s why this month, we’ve spoken to our Finance System experts at Aqilla to get their top tips on selecting the right accounting solution for your finance department and organisation, ensuring that you don’t needlessly spend money on software features that you just don’t use or need!

The most vital stage of buying anything new is research. Finding viable software options that tick boxes such as the right price point, the right degree of complexity and the right measure of friendly, approachable customer service, is the first stage to uncovering suppliers and systems that match your organisation’s individual needs. Our top tip here is to include customer reviews, feedback and case studies in your research to gain an insightful perspective on the accounting software and supplier that you’re investigating.

Reach out to people

However, having knowledge of all the different options available to you can be an almost impossible task. This is why it’s crucial to reach out and chat with others. Perhaps an ex-colleague has just been through the process of implementing a new system and has some recommendations for you, or one of your team members has used a certain piece of software in a previous role that they found unnecessarily complex. Whether it be your team at work, ex-colleagues, or the software vendors themselves, speaking with others who have experience in finding or using different accounting software will help you to make a better-informed decision.

Request live product demonstrations

Of course, as the saying goes, the proof is in the pudding, or in this case, the product demonstrations! It’s always necessary to get a live demonstration of any accounting software that you are interested in purchasing. This will help you to narrow down your decisions, and understand in more depth, which options are most suited to your level of accounting needs. 

Remember to ask key questions

To make the most out of these product demonstrations, it’s also extremely important to ask software vendors the right questions. It’s important to note that suppliers should also be asking you numerous questions to gauge how their software can meet your specific needs and solve any current accounting difficulties you’re facing. For advice on which key questions to consider, check out our guide on the top 10 essential questions you should be asking prospective software suppliers here.

“Unlike other suppliers, Aqilla didn’t show me the shape of the product, they asked me about our business and the implementation was shaped to fit. I knew it was going to work from both a product and a relationship perspective. With any accounts package, there is a danger of getting what you ask for and not what you need. It’s so easy to get your spec wrong. With Aqilla, what really works for me is the ability to change your mind without serious consequences. The Aqilla team listened to our needs and then worked with us to develop our solution.”

Gail Collett, Financial Director at Switch Communications
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In summary, good communication is key to successfully choosing the right Cloud accounting solution for your organisation. As Gail from Switch Communications explains, there is often a risk of choosing a solution that doesn’t meet your specific needs, which can result in needless overspending. When making your decision, ensure you place emphasis on both your communication with colleagues and software suppliers during your research, as well as noting how personably software suppliers communicate with you. If you need any other tips or support in finding a Cloud accounting solution for your organisation, you can reach out to one of our trusted advisers here.