Accounting software you'll want to know as a bookkeeper
Bookkeeping positions aren't going to disappear anytime soon, but prospective bookkeepers need to master as many accounting and bookkeeping applications as possible in order to secure their positions in an increasingly competitive field.
Today, corporate employees rely on new software, systems, and technology to complete daily tasks, and bookkeepers are no exception. Below, we've compiled a list of the most common and useful accounting software—if you aren't currently proficient in these applications, consider pursuing training so that you can list them on your resume. That is, if you want the best chance of securing a bookkeeping position.
Although companies have different needs and using accounting software for different purposes, QuickBooks is a consistent choice for many businesses thanks to its versatility. QuickBooks is available in several different versions—Simple Start, Essentials, Plus, Payroll—depending on how much a company needs from their accounting software. QuickBooks can be used to track customer payments and inventory, create purchase orders and bill payments, and complete payroll tasks, and it's particularly useful for small and medium-sized business accounting. One standout feature is invoice tracking, which has been positively reviewed online as relatively easy to use.
Xero is a Cloud-based accounting software, meaning that all bookkeeping information doesn't save to a local computer or company server, but rather to a remote location. For larger businesses—where data needs to be accessible to many employees in different locations—cloud-based accounting software has become a popular choice. Xero performs many of the same functions as QuickBooks and comes in three levels: Starter, Standard, and Premium.
Over 500 applications connect with Xero, including those for inventory and timecard tracking, making Xero a highly customizable solution for many companies. One of the more unique features of Zero is its ability to handle transactions in multiple currencies seamlessly, which is useful for international companies as well as those who do business overseas.
Like Xero, Sage is a cloud-based accounting software that comes in a variety of forms, including those for small and medium-sized businesses. It also has tools to help integrate bookkeeping with project management, which is useful for larger companies (see Sage 300c).
And these three accounting applications are just the beginning: Wave (for small businesses and freelancers), LessAccounting (known for its ease-of-use), and Zoho Books are all common solutions as well. A comprehensive list would be daunting, but these applications are a good place to start, both for prospective bookkeepers aiming to land accounting positions and current bookkeepers looking to expand their skills.
Interested in learning some of these applications, but aren't sure where to start? Many offer free demos for a limited time, allowing you to become familiar with them without purchasing. Teaching yourself new accounting software is a great way to show current and potential employers that you take your job seriously and are willing and able to learn new skills and adapt. And don't forget to list these proficiencies on your resume.