Outgrowing QuickBooks: How Do You Know It’s Time To Move Off of QuickBooks?

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This is a common topic for sales and marketing people wanting to move organizations off the QuickBooks accounting system.  This perspective is from someone who has actually started up a business over twenty years ago and used QuickBooks even though we sold a much more capable system. Our company has since grown large enough that we are now able to use and enjoy our own product. Many years later we have converted approximately thirty customers off of the QuickBooks system to Microsoft Dynamics NAV, the most popular mid-market accounting and ERP system in the world with over 96,000 customers and which we started supporting exclusively in 2000.

So what might drive an organization to move from QuickBooks?

  1. Performance – in our case we had added quite a few employees and the system just wasn’t capable of coping with the higher throughput needed in a larger organization.
  2. Integrated database – when a company is smaller, they are doing everything they can to keep up.  That means a lot of manual processes and spreadsheets.  Eventually, the pain of this extra work gets to be too much as the volume of work expands.  A high quality mid-market ERP system allows an organization to keep virtually all of the required information in one database, which reduces duplicate data entry and related errors.
  3. Quick access to information – all the information goes in and it can be difficult to get it out of QuickBooks using its processes. The new Excel exports help a lot but it is still not an efficient way to analyze information.  Pulling information out through SQL Services Reporting Services or Business Intelligence data cubes allows staff to keep on top of critical metrics and KPI’s.
  4. Ability to customize – I know this is a bad word for some people but the reality is that businesses often have some unique processes that comprise a competitive advantage. As an example, we have one very large Dynamics NAV customer who has refused for years to act as a reference in their industry.  They believed the customizations we were able to do for them gave them such a competitive advantage they wanted to keep that knowledge away from their competitors.
  5. Industrial strength – Even with the massive amounts of research and development put into the QuickBooks product, when we were on QuickBooks we still found data inconsistencies and realized that we were missing key features we could find in a higher end system.  It was time to move and the ability to quickly export information from QuickBooks made the process fairly simple.

Enjoy QuickBooks while it makes sense for your growing business.  It’s a great little system, but just like with the little car you drove before having kids, plan ahead so you are prepared to move on when you need more.

Is it time to make the move to a more comprehensive enterprise resource planning system?
Is it time to make the move to a more comprehensive enterprise resource planning system?

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