How accounting software saved small businesses during Covid?


COVID-19 was a nightmare for small businesses in the United States More than 80% of small business owners said they had lost revenue due to the pandemic in a survey by Wiss and Sapio Research. In addition, 27% said they suffered a dramatic loss of income and 20% turned to savings or borrowed credit.

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But the crisis was also the pot in which several innovations to save SMEs were cooked. One of them is Quickbooks Online Payroll, an accounting software package led by Intuit Inc (NASDAQ: INTU) IT product manager Ruming Zhen.

An exceptional solution

Quickbooks Online Payroll allows companies to manage payroll through one platform while providing access to integrated services for employees.

With the Quickbooks package, small businesses can track income and expenses, accept payments, manage billing, and track sales and sales taxes. Today, the accounting software offers these features and more to approximately 15 million businesses in the United States.

But the software does more than that. Some of these features have helped Intuit’s millions of small business customers “take advantage of new federal and state laws and policies, defer responsibility for paying taxes, apply for funds, and retain employees.”

Ruming Zhen, the man behind the Quickbooks team, says the software has driven “record business results, improved retention, revenue, product experience and marketing value proposition.”

During the pandemic, technology has become essential to ensure efficiency and productivity, especially among the remote workforce, and low-code technologies allow companies to customize and implement services with little effort. investment in software development.

Competitive environment

The impact of the pandemic on revenue and remote workforce management has created disruptive dynamics. Many businesses have turned to digital systems that facilitate automation and online customer service tracking.

While these solutions aren’t completely new to the world, “the increased focus on automation and the rise of decentralized business operations during the pandemic have resulted in growing demand,” Zhen says.

Amid COVID-19, about 70% of businesses in the United States are increasing or maintaining their investments in such digital innovations.

So FreshBooks — QuickBooks’ fiercest rival — announced a data-sharing partnership with the Ontario government in July to “share data and insights into small business recovery trends,” as reported in A press release.

The decision “will help small businesses and entrepreneurs by using data from FreshBooks to help identify weaknesses and gaps in government programs to support timely and impactful decision-making and policy development.”

Additionally, in July, Bookkeper360 launched its Bookkeper360 App Marketplace, an AI-powered offering designed to help SMB owners access services such as capital and payroll.

According to CEO Nick Pasquarosa, “the company has also prequalified for $9 million in customer funding that will help it grow during its pilot period.”

The proliferation of these solutions has come to rival those of IT giants like Oracle Corporation’s NetSuite (NYSE:ORCL), SAP SE’s Business One (NYSE:SAP) and Microsoft Corporation’s (NASDAQ:MSFT) Desktop Accounting.

Market trends

According to Mordor Intelligence, the Accounting Software Market was valued at $12.01 Billion in 2020 and is projected to reach $19.59 Billion by 2026 at a CAGR of 8.5%.

The agency reports that the growing development of SME partnerships with e-commerce players and integration with other online applications – automated banking flows and automated invoicing functionalities – should facilitate the adoption of accounting software.

Cloud-based offerings have had the biggest impact over the past 20 years, with a good share of vendors “taking advantage of the cost advantages of the cloud.”

Additionally, “one of the notable strategies exhibited by these new entrants in accounting software is the inclusion of advanced features, such as artificial intelligence, for applications such as planning, learning, solving problems and voice recognition”.

The pandemic has amplified the demand for smart remote access to financial records and systems.

The advent of these applications is also having a significant impact on employment trends among accountants and related professionals, since according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, the number of accounting, accounting and auditing clerks employees in the United States fell from 29 to 1.51 million. between 2016 and 2019.

A new role for accountants

Software and cloud services have also changed the role of accountants within organizations, since they started replacing Excel documents with desktop applications, which also allowed them to record data.

However, in the beginning the software was tied to the computer and the information was not as portable as desired.

Now, the software has evolved to move data to the cloud, enabling complete information mobility, connectivity from anywhere – as long as there is a stable internet connection – and real-time data collection.

It is undeniable that digital transformation and technological advancements have spawned tools and platforms with automated and sophisticated administrative and accounting processes.

The role of the accountant and its functions have been transformed forever, and they are more like financial advisors with the knowledge and essential tools to make projections, analyzes and make decisions in favor of any company in any sector. .

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