Top 10 Reasons to use Quickbooks over Simply Accounting

Written by on September 17, 2008 | Accounting Best Practice, QCDocs Best Practice

I get asked about bookkeeping applications a lot!  I’d say I’ve pretty much mastered three- Quickbooks, Simply Accounting and Peachtree (or at least Peachtree 2004 – haven’t used it since then).  Peachtree and Simply are very similer products and I guess this is why Sage (owner of both Simply and Peachtree) has decided to discontinuing developing Simply Accounting in the US…

Simply Accounting is very popular in Canada, I suspect because Sage has gotten Simply Accounting into all the educational programs… clever, clever!  See a QCDocs virtual Company stocked with demo documents coming to a school near you in the future!

Once you use Quickbooks; however, there’s no going back!  Which brings me to my top 10 list.

  1. The most common complaint I’ve heard about Quickbooks is that it lacks an “audit trail” ie. you can change anything and people will screw it up!  This isn’t actually true as you can turn on an audit trail that runs behind the scenes.  What it doesn’t do is clutter your General Ledger with all your mistakes- hurray!   Despite SOX, bookkeeping is still an art!  Getting it just right takes time and you need a system that allows you to aggressively pursue financial reports that really work well for your business.  Having to reverse corrective entries and repost is a disaster!  It makes the General Ledger look an absolute mess and sure you can retrace your steps but you’ve created a maze that no one can follow!  The Key- Good financial Close processes and lock down your month and QB’s does just that and QCDocs helps guide the process!
  2. Speed, speed, speed… everywhere from opening the program to navigating the program to report creation, Quickbooks does it in about half the time as Simply!  
  3. Period close processes.   I may need to retract my Simply expertise hat here as I still don’t fully get why they make this so complex… enough said!?
  4. Chart of Account Management and Merge- Quickbooks this is slick!  You can whip together a great set of financials with subtotalling managed entirely by indenting of accounts (watch out for posting to headers…a wee pet peeve of mine that produces ” ….- Other” accounts!  Merging redundant accounts accidentally thrown in there…see point 10!  S..t happens in accounting…give me tools to fix it fast!
  5. Stability… In 8 years of using Quickbooks almost every day I’ve only seen one legitimate crash.  Still recovered just fine so just by pure volume I have to give the nod to QB’s here!
  6. Multicurrency- Nice job here Intuit although it takes some getting use to as this is my number one area of Quickbooks training- Home Currency Adjustments!  I think Intuit Canada is still suffering from the bombardment of QB’s 2008 without a multicurrency version… well at least for a couple of weeks until “2008-Multicurrency showed up- ie. QuickBooks 2007 with 2008 payroll tables! LOL’s but thanks anyway as 90% of our Canadian clients do business in the States.
  7. Subledger integration- This a common accounting application problem that haunts auditors everywhere- why doesn’t the subledger tie into the General Ledger?  Accountants call it a reconciliation- I call it an “f-up”. Quickbooks is the first accounting application that I’ve seen that makes it almost impossible to have this problem occur… a few multi-currency issues in there that still cause it grief but superior to others by a long shot.
  8. Customer invoicing- Time and reimburseable expense flow through.  Combine what QB’s does with this and what QCDocs does with tying the time reporting and reimburseable bills and receipts together and you have customer billing heavan!
  9. Reporting- Quickbooks produces some amazing reports- my favorite are trended P&L and Bal Sh (would like to see improvements in cash flow reports but this is tricky for GAAP).  I like collapse to show a crisp R&D, S&M, G&A and Facilities for my tech companies to match public companies peers (facilities to be allocated accordingly).  Fast clean A/P, A/R and detailed P&L.  
  10.  Integration with third party software… was there any doubt- batch upload from QCDocs of bills and expense reports into Quickbooks is a thing of pure beauty and joy to every bookkeeper… Simply Accounting not so much…!?  It still works but there must be an easier way to do it… Quickbooks did it!? iif!  Time batch entry as well- slick!   I actually like how QCDocs syncs with Simply a bit better but I have to give the nod to Quickbooks!

Big forewarning– I’ve seen bookkeepers butcher QuickBooks too!  Good processes are key to any accounting application and this is where QCDocs comes in.  QCDocs forces good bookkeeping practices by driving Bill association with Bill entries (ie. robust subledgering and proper accrual accounting!) and same goes with customer invoicing!  Accounting applications should use AP and AR subledgers and minimize the use of General Journal entries and cash entries… and all will be well!

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