Money Matters

Outgrowing quickbooks? Here’s your 5-step transition plan

Man sits with a computer using credit card

If you’ve been feeling like you’re outgrowing QuickBooks, you’re hardly alone. Many SaaS startups like yours begin their financial journey’s using QuickBooks, which – with more than 80% market share – is by far the most popular small business accounting application. It’s well known. It’s easy. It works, and it offers the functionality a business needs when it’s starting out.

Yet there comes a time when SaaS startup leaders must assess the hidden costs of continuing to use QuickBooks. If your SaaS startup has moved beyond the entry level, your business may be facing a number of challenges as you hit the limits of QuickBooks’ functionality.

How do you know when to say goodbye to spreadsheets and manual consolidations? Which options should you consider? What is the difference between Sage Intacct vs QuickBooks? We discuss all that and more in this article, in which we aim to help you compare the cost of the status quo with the benefits of switching.

Which accounting software is right for you?

Automation is becoming a mainstay in the world of SaaS accounting, leading to many startups feeling growing pains at earlier stages in the corporate lifecycle.

While using a basic accounting system like QuickBooks is certainly better than nothing, growing SaaS startups can expect to come up against its limitations pretty quickly. It spreads your team’s information widely and inconveniently, rather than centralizing it as automation does.

As SaaS startups grow and become more complex, executives will notice they’ve outgrown QuickBooks when accounting becomes bogged down with manual data entry, unruly spreadsheets, time-consuming workarounds, and patched-together analysis. When you’ve reached this point, it is, however, good news. The fact that you need a new accounting system is a good sign your business is growing. Congratulations!

Now it’s time to find a QuickBooks alternative that won’t slow you down. Is Sage Intacct the right accounting software for you? Let’s take a look at the differences between Sage Intacct and QuickBooks.

Sage Intacct vs QuickBooks

QuickBooks simply wasn’t designed to provide professional financial management capabilities to growing organizations with sophisticated, evolving demands that require more and better visibility into financial and operational performance – such as automating key processes, providing anytime, anywhere access, enforcing internal controls, customizing functionality, and integrating with other critical applications.

Outgrowing QuickBooks is never easy since it involves financial symptoms that spread all the way across your accounting department. Here are a few of the biggest reasons to consider the capabilities of Sage Intacct vs QuickBooks for your SaaS startup:

  • Painful audits: Recurring revenue companies must be able to keep detailed records about each transaction. Why was each change initiated? What was the authorization architecture? Sage Intacct uses automation to store all this data and much more, for seamless and simple audits.
  • Limited forecasts: Are you coming up against the limits of your forecasting abilities? It’s a sure sign you might be ready for Sage Intacct vs QuickBooks remaining the status quo. With Sage Intacct, you can run complex multifactor forecasts far into the future just by plugging in your starting data.

  • Inflexible billing: Most SaaS companies offer a broad degree of pricing and billing flexibility. Increasing demand for usage billing, feature tiers, group rates, and other pricing options make flexible billing vital for SaaS companies. QuickBooks and other manual approaches to billing are highly inefficient. Sage Intacct automates the billing process, saving you time and cash and preventing potential mistakes.
  • Manual close cycle: Accounting departments who rely on QuickBooks have to close their books manually each month. Companies who upgrade to Sage Intacct enjoy the benefits of automated, continuous closing. Your books will be automatically closed as each new transaction occurs, eliminating the need for a manual monthly close cycle.
  • Limited reporting: Far-ranging reporting is the backbone of effective fundraising (not to mention great board meetings). You’re probably outgrowing QuickBooks if your reporting has grown more challenging than it once was. Sage Intacct uses automation to generate accurate, investor-grade reports that can help you with fundraising, hiring, FP&A, and much more.

How to transition from QuickBooks to Sage Intacct (in 5-easy steps)

Now that you know the most important symptoms of outgrowing QuickBooks – and how Sage Intacct provides the necessary capabilities for your growing SaaS business – let’s dive into your 5-step transition plan. An automated accounting department is just around the corner!

Step 1: Integrate systems for Quote-to-Cash

One of the surest signs of outgrowing QuickBooks is a quote-to-cash system that’s losing steam due to the shortcomings of manual processes. Automation can help you turn things right around.

A cloud-based accounting suite can centralize your data during every phase of the transaction, from beginning to end. This keeps your sales team connected to your finance team so everyone’s on the same page.

But just as significantly, your quote-to-cash cycle will be streamlined and accelerated. This means your DSO will be lowered, and you’ll have more free cash flow to devote to projects, hiring plans, and elsewhere.

Step 2: Establish billing flexibility

Billing headaches are another common side effect of outgrowing QuickBooks. This is because it was built with traditional, static ordering and billing processes in mind.

Unfortunately, that doesn’t reflect the day-to-day billing realities and preferences of modern SaaS companies. With pricing possibilities ranging from usage and feature-based billing to hybrid billing models and many others, establishing billing flexibility is a must.

Cloud-based accounting software can support agile billing possibilities that simply can’t be replicated by spreadsheets.

Step 3: Build end-to-end revenue management

Especially with the demands of ASC 606 and other regulations, SaaS companies are finding that they’re outgrowing QuickBooks more quickly in terms of revenue recognition.

Forward-thinking accounting teams leverage software to automate a single revenue stream throughout the customer lifecycle. This saves significant amounts of time and money and creates an organized process around revenue management.

If you’re tired of operating at less than your best, use automation to take back control of your cash flow today.

Step 4: Access real-time reporting and SaaS metrics

You’re probably outgrowing QuickBooks if you’re finding that your relationship to your SaaS metrics isn’t what it should be. Metrics are meant to offer truly actionable real-time guidance. If your current accounting software isn’t supplying that, there’s a better QuickBooks alternative.

With a cloud-based accounting solution, you can access real-time reporting and SaaS metrics with the press of a button. Settling for anything less means that you and your team are building your plans on outdated data.

There’s no need to take that risk when you have access to cloud-based alternatives like Sage Intacct, which will allow you to be more agile in your decision-making with real-time updates.

Step 5: Forecast and plan for the future

Automation allows you to run instant forecasts for hiring scenarios, potential billing models, discount campaigns, and more. If forecasts have become challenging or limited, you’re outgrowing QuickBooks.

It’s no secret that companies who can measure their forecasting horizon in years have a distinct advantage over competitors whose forecasts are limited to months.

With cloud-based forecasting, you can gaze into the future and improve your corporate decision-making at every level.

Scaling finance with Sage Intacct

After learning more about the incredible possibilities that automation has opened up for SaaS accounting teams, do you feel like you’re outgrowing QuickBooks? If so, there are better alternatives to QuickBooks for scaling finance – and we can help.

See how modern CFOs are transforming their teams with the new modern FinOps tech stack for growing SaaS companies.

Still not sure which accounting software is right for you? See why independent reviewers and finance experts like you rate Sage Intacct as the best accounting software for organization’s to thrive in today’s ever-changing digital world.