During working hours, Greg Lahaie can be found helping Red Wing Software customers get their payroll done on time. Greg has been working in support at Red Wing Software for 16 years, and is an expert in his field. Customers depend on his help daily to get their questions answered, complete processes, learn something new, and much more.
Outside of work, Greg is well known as an adventurous world traveler! His most recent travels took him to Alaska, for a vacation filled with fun and excitement. He and his wife even sent an e-mail while they were out, with a subject line of “We’re Not Dead Yet”. Well, all of us at Red Wing Software were extremely glad to hear that! (We were pretty sure our customers would feel the same way.) Have a look at Greg’s Alaska pictures, and you will understand the wild title. (Hint, there was zip-lining, white-water rafting and four-wheeling involved, just to name a few!)
Have you ever noticed when you ask someone what they “do” you usually get one of two responses; one, they are almost apologetic about their job, or two, their voice gets high pitched as they try to put some excitement into their answer that you can tell they clearly don’t buy into. What’s wrong with this picture? We all know we spend a vast majority of our life “working” and more time is spent with our co-workers than with our own families. How can we create some excitement into our chosen line of work, or our “job”?
We need to get a “gig”!
Just the word brings a connotation of fun and a sense of freedom! Musicians have gigs, comedians have gigs -- all of the “cool” jobs have gigs. Just think, an accountant could say, "I have a numbers gig." A software developer could say, "I develop 'gigs'" (no pun intended). I, a marketing manager, have a creative gig. You get the picture. Just the word “work” or “job” sounds boring, lacking the excitement and fun of what we know a “gig” to be. We spend too much of our life just working jobs, we need to recapture what the “cool” factor or passion was that brought us to the job and re-energize ourselves and rock that gig! If you are in-between a “gig” (like I might very well be after my boss reads this post), look for a “gig” not just a job. Life’s too short not to enjoy every minute of it, and when you find that gig, rock it!
If you’ve ever searched for just the right business accounting software, you’ve probably noticed that the price varies greatly by product. Many people wonder why there is such a variation in pricing among software products. Accounting software can range from ‘free’ to $100,000+ in price! Well, much like the price for your paid for the vehicle you drive, business accounting software prices vary for a wide variety of reasons. Here are some of the major components impacting the price tag.
Business accounting software ranges greatly in its functionality. The free and least expensive programs offer the most basic of features, like the ability to add customers, vendors, accounts and basic business information. Small businesses and those just starting up should be able to enter their basic accounts payable and accounts receivable information into the system and also pull out basic standard financial reports. The smallest of systems will usually place limits on the number of companies, customers, users, memory, and other data. More complex functions such as multiple warehouse management, customizable reports, serial number tracking and much more are available in mid-market systems, a great option for those who are outgrowing basic systems. Larger companies will typically opt for programs where the source code is available, meaning the actual software itself (not just its features) are customizable.
There are two types of customization when it comes to business accounting software. One type is more basic and allows you to customize components within the software. As systems become more robust, more customizability is offered within the system. The other is, as mentioned above, ‘open source code’ which allows you (actually, a programmer) to customize the actual program to meet your needs. The more customization available, the more expensive the software becomes. This is because more resources are needed to plan for and implement custom programming for your software system. The ongoing support of customized software takes more time and resources, thus the more complex your system, the more your support will cost.
How do you feel as a customer of the software you use? When you contact the company for help, do you feel important? Or do you feel lost in a sea of other customers, trying to get your voice to be heard? Your business accounting software is only as good as its support team. Maybe you need help in setting up your system, trying to find the most efficient way to do something, or solving a problem that seems to be taking you a long time on your own. Your software support team should be able to help you with any of these issues and more. If you have to spend time waiting and hoping for somebody to call you back, only to realize they are not experienced enough to help you, that is wasted time and lost dollars. Opt for support that is experienced and available within a reasonable amount of time. Yes the price tag may be more, but in the end you will save money and keep things running a lot more smoothly.
As with any important purchase you make, many factors should be considered when purchasing business accounting software. Every detail and feature within a business accounting software system costs money to develop, distribute, support and maintain. Instead of focusing on price, be sure that the software you choose can handle your business needs and help run your business for years to come.