Accounting and Finance Management Software Development: A Complete Guide
If an organization wants to prosper then it needs to manage financial transactions, maintain accuracy and transparency. Anything like observing, storing, planning, and securing investments can be defined as transactions. In the accounting sector, all the monetary undertakings of a company are very well handled by custom accounting software companies, and they also offer bespoke financial solutions.
You can maintain stability, regulate taxes, and measure the cash flow using such software. And now everything from managing and planning the business expenses to yield maximum returns to gaining the profits is possible.
So in this article, we will go through the step-by-step custom software development for finance and accounting management and how it is beneficial to businesses around the world.
Every product has certain features. Similarly, there are some features that a fintech software development company must include in your accounting software. Let us look at them in detail:
- Data Analytics – Data analytics is one of the most important aspects of fintech software development because data gives decision-making power. It provides users with a plain overview of their financial activities. The accounting software is also used to decipher the data and create reports for users. Managing financial operations can be complicated at times so, the advanced functionality of fintech services is offered to users to perform them easily. The aim here is not only to cater to the needs of people by streamlining the entire process but also making it a pleasant experience while using an app.
- API integration – Consumers want a platform or a system that could address their financial requirements by providing customized solutions. You can now make mobile payments or transfer money to function-specific requirements like asset management and crowdfunding just by using your fintech software. Now, serve your customers by handling a wide range of tasks from a unique system just by blending some APIs. such multiple APIs are integrated into a large-scale app so that you don’t have to build functionalities over and over again for every finance application you create.
- Biometric Security System – The number of cybercrimes keeps on rising with the advancements of technology. Developing secure accounting software solutions should be the priority of software developers. They feel confident and assured when users know that the online payment method they are using is one of the highly secured systems. The latest biometric inputs like fingerprints input, heartbeat measurement, facial recognition, palm-Vein biometrics, and more can take your security to a whole level.
- Automation – AI accounting software is used to automate different types of manual and repetitive tasks. AI helps software developers to create various types of accounting software solutions. It helps the users to make decisions about their finances including where to invest their money, how to manage their overdrawn accounts, approving interest rates, and approving loans at better interests. AI also comes in with exclusive notification management features. It saves a lot of time for the user as it notifies the user about required interventions only.
- Artificial Intelligence – AI is an emerging technology that every single industry is using as leverage to take its digital transformation to an entirely new level. Using AI in accounting software can offer customers an enhanced user experience. The code used in various types of accounting software is a little complex. It is used to anticipate how much a customer can manage to save or spend. But with the advent of AI, web-based accounting software can now deliver intelligent services for example banking services – improving operational accuracy and efficiency by freeing up the baking resources. The financial institutions can now have their professionals working on more profitable activities rather than spending their time after mundane and repetitive tasks.
- Chatbots and ML – Chatbots and Machine Learning technology help finance-based businesses to improve and automate their customer support services.
- Personalization – If you integrate your accounting software with AI then it can offer smart suggestions and answers to the users after evaluating their investments and spending habits. The effective execution of artificial intelligence allows the custom software to help users make the right decisions about their investment services and make personalized recommendations.
- Blockchain – It enables you to share data faster and securely across various platforms. And that too without any resources to intermediates like banks or insurance companies. This technology is considered one of the disruptive technologies in the world. It not only has the potential to transform the entire financial sector but also to boost the effectiveness of the ecosystem.
- Cryptocurrency – This is sort of a digital asset with a very high impact on the finance industry. Cryptocurrency is used to verify the person’s identity to improve transaction security. It offers detailed information for how a transaction occurred during a certain period and can be used in a distributed ledger. This technology is very useful for financial organizations as it helps them save costs when they are moving funds efficiently.
Companies need to keep track of their incomes and expenditures hence, accounting software is very crucial for the business. Additionally, the accounting software uses the data to manage the finances and run the financial operations of any business efficiently. It simplifies the task for the accounting department so that they can easily get the balance-related information and analyze the financial data of the company. But apart from all such things, there are some challenges that a professional or the financing company needs to solve. Now, we will discuss such problems in detail:
When you are managing financial transactions, you must process all the data with high quality and at a fast rate. No business owner would like to wait for their accounts to process paperwork slowly. Time is also money, especially in business. Hence, they would need all the financial transactions on time. For this, finance software development companies have come up with a solution where they have automated the financial operations to make it easy and quick for the users to get access to the financial information they require.
Custom accounting software can help you save both your time and money. Even if there is a bigger accounting department with skilled experts in an organization, it can be quite hard sometimes to get through with all the subtleties. Therefore, automated custom software is created to allow smooth functioning without any need for a professional to keep an eye on it.
The storage capacity of finance and accounting software is very high. Therefore, it can easily memorize all the changes that happen. This enables the accountants and other users to operate the critical information with ease.
The chances of errors are higher in humans than in a machine or this case – software. An accounting management software can process all the financial operations and do calculations with precision and accuracy. That is the reason why most finance companies have started using the software to avoid or reduce all kinds of human errors.
Integrating a cloud-based enterprise resource planning solution with finance and accounting software works just fine. As it allows you to ensure your returns and secure all the finance-related data from all kinds of cyber threats. The benefits of accounting and finance software are as mentioned below:
Financial software comes in with a complete package including various services for error-free accounting, planning, budgeting, and forecasting. It is not just a tool that can manage your assets and expenses for our organization but can also provide seamless integration with banking sites.
Accounting management software takes care of all the financial aspects of business like organizing and maintaining transaction records, accelerating invoicing, reducing accounting errors, and optimizing liquidity flow.
Now make sure that your financial data is very well protected and execute multi-level authorization with the help of accounting software development. And you will need robust software to perform sensitive functions of the organization like financial and data audits.
If you want to expand your business then you would need a system that works seamlessly. This software system must be robust and scalable to handle the growth of the business and also to look after the overall market and business locations.
Accounting software is capable of integrating accounting data with enterprise operations. This not only helps the businesses to minimize their operational complexities but also to make sure of the data integrity.
Now, the most important thing you need to keep in mind while you develop a solution is – what type of solution do you need. For example, accounting software built for a small business can’t fit the requirements of a large enterprise and vice versa. So, here we are distinguishing the accounting software in the following categories:
Google spreadsheets, Microsoft Excel, and many more similar programs are available in the market to perform simple tasks like making lists, calculate data, produce accounts, analyze information, and check for errors. These are a perfect fit for small and simple businesses. But their main weakness lies in their dependency on humans.
Because if a human is in control of creating and managing such spreadsheets then the elimination of all errors can not be guaranteed. Also, the number of spreadsheets starts to grow with your business and after a certain point, the user feels like sinking into all these. Hence, you can’t have flexibility here.
Commercial Accounting Software
This kind of software is most suitable for small and medium-sized companies. Commercial programs can fulfill most of the accounting requirements and are built by professionals. Peachtree and Quickbooks are to name some of such programs. The advantages of commercial accounting software are as discussed below:
- Provide seamless access to your data from any device and location
- Draw up reports automatically — more convenient for your accountant
- Several people can access data simultaneously
- More convenient for auditors
- Due to updates, it is much easier to follow changes in the law
- Tax preparation is easy
- Sending reports, invoices, and payments to customers and vendors is easy
- They are scalable
Enterprise Accounting Software
Large enterprises manage a well-expanded business so they have to work with a huge amount of datasets. Similarly, they would need such an accounting program that could manage to process all of that information. Hence, the finance solutions developed for large-scale businesses and enterprises not only perform accounting-specific operations but can also blend in with other services like project planning, workflow management, and business intelligence.
This product will be packaged and ready to deliver a type of system with standard functionalities that are available to the general public. You can easily integrate it within your existing infrastructure without any need for customization. This is one size fits all type of product but it definitely can not fulfill the requirements of all the businesses out there.
- Lower initial price
- Included support and maintenance
- Free upgrades may be provided
- Extended functionality
- A sophisticated system
- Some features you may never use
- Not flexible to industrial needs and market changes
- To fit the program, you may probably need to change your processes
- No competitive advantages, as your business rivals either use the same software (and you are in the same boat) or develop customized programs (and leave you behind)
Standard functions that come in with a readymade package can not completely fulfill the needs of any company because every company has operations unique to their business and hence require personal settings. Therefore, you will need a platform customized to fulfill your business requirements. But not every company needs to hire a panel of software developers to build custom software for their business. You can also outsource this service. You can hire a top vendor from the industry to build accounting software for your company.
- High automation
- An easy-to-use system
- Efficient functionality tailored to your exact requirements
- Fast response to changes
- Flexibility (quick modifications are possible)
- Competitive advantages
- High initial price
- Higher risks
- Continuous dependence
Though we are mentioning it over here, on-premises development is an outdated way of data storage. It was costly, inconvenient, and unreliable. The developed program would run only on the computer in which it was installed. Also, people couldn’t access data simultaneously. Customer support and upgrades can be very expensive and time-consuming in this case.
In this type of software, the information is stored in the remote servers whereas a web browser is used to deliver functionalities. A user can access the data through mobile devices or via PC. web-based accounting software is effective and convenient. Software developers create web-based accounting management software by combining various technology frameworks and CMS solutions.
Now, this type of software development is the most cost-effective and the most scalable option available. The users can access their data anytime and from anywhere. All they need is an internet connection. It also offers online accounting. The best part? You don’t have to install any software or get any more hardware. You just only need to have cloud-based accounting software or software as a service (SaaS) built and work for you on a subscription basis.
A software development process consists of a few stages. Even the production stage comes after some stages. You need to build a customized software as per your business requirements. You should consider the core features first that are most essential for you and then you can add some other functionalities later. So, let us see how you can go from ideation to deployment of accounting software with a step by step approach mentioned below:
Consulting doesn’t only mean providing advice to people. It also means listening and understanding the problems people or an organization are facing. Only after that, a consultant would know what kind of solution the client is looking for. Understanding the client’s business and its needs is one of the most critical aspects of software development. If a software consultant fails to understand the problem or requirements then the solution he/she will offer won’t work for your business at all.
After understanding your current business operations, systems, and their drawbacks, a consultant will come up with some ideas that could improve your recent scenario. If it requires then the software vendor would have to create a custom software solution for you which takes us to our next stage of development.
Planning and designing software needs accuracy. Hence the software vendor must work in this stage in collaboration with its employees and the client. Because they would need to discuss many subjects like return on investment, technology frameworks, methodology, possible risk factors, and more. In the end, together they would be able to finalize a budget, draw out a workflow for the system, and create a design for your custom software.
After you have a complete design and a clear strategy for accounting software development then now it’s time you start making a prototype. This stage of development can be a little complicated and expensive too. Because in this stage the software developers will be transforming the concept or design into a fully functioning system. The developers need to write and compile codes for it. They will install the required environment, create test cases, integrate all the features, and refine the program.
If you want to follow the best industry practices then your software development services provider will make use of DevOps practices to imply continuous integration, testing, and deployment of your software. Through this practice, your software will be developed gradually starting to form the most essential features. This allows the software development team to prepare a finished product that is always well designed and thoroughly tested. The software developed through such methodology can be very easy for the client to adapt and gain a competitive advantage in the market.
If you think your software project is completed after the provider delivered your product then you are wrong because, among the frequent market fluctuations and very intense competition, a project is never fully completed. If it is launched, executed in a working environment then the project is still working. However, custom software is always a long-term companion that performs post-implementation and in-process reviews. You have to maintain the system to keep it completely operational, support its efficiency and install the updates as per the time and situation demands.
Many factors affect the cost of an accounting software development process. Some important ones are as mentioned below:
- The number of features included
- The number of users supported
- Time limits (the quicker it should be developed, the more expensive it will be)
- Security (a system with a simple log/pass is cheaper than with multi-level security)
- Training (the vendor may offer initial or comprehensive training courses to teach your employees how to use the program and the price may vary accordingly)
- Maintenance and support (the cost of technical support, hardware, or software maintenance is also included and usually comprises 15-25% of the total project cost)
So, no software vendor can prepare an estimate without getting fully acknowledged about your requirements and the specifications of the project. The price range depends on the custom software development company as well as their geographic locations.
Developing finance and accounting software can be very challenging but if done right, it can be very beneficial in the long run. If a business organization opts to go for custom software development then they have an opportunity to build new capabilities on top of their existing applications. Nowadays, in the finance industry, all the fintech companies want to offer their customers a personalized and seamless financial services experience.
I hope you enjoyed reading this article and got what you came for. If you have any suggestions or queries then let me know in the comments section below.