You, as an owner of a construction business, whether you are self-employed or have your co-workers help you out, are building our future. So it is extremely important nothing is in your way when you are doing your job. And unfortunately accounting is something that could take away your precious time. Choose an online accounting solution, and you can easily invoice various clients, plan and manage many projects at the same time, track your work hours and create your invoices based thereon, record your expenses and quickly pay your co-workers and file employee related taxes in minutes with the payroll feature. And, if you want to, you can also work from your phone and integrate your software with others, thus turning your accounting solution your right hand. No matter which solution you pick, remember: there is no bad choice here.
Online accounting software comes with many features from invoicing, billing, estimating etc. to payroll, fast payment and projects. But before you consider purchasing a software with less features, consider this: it is better to have an accounting solution with features you do not use (but probably will in the future) than subscribing to one without features you might need sometime.
We cannot decide in your place, but we can give you our advice on the most important features your software should include:
Projecting and Time Tracking
Most accounting software have this feature which allows you to plan and manage several projects at the same time. You can manually add your work time to these projects, but many accounting solutions are also equipped with clever apps with which you can actually track how many hours you have worked in real time. Either way you will be able to invoice billable and unbillable work times to your customers.
This is an important feature your software should have; clients want to know how much your work will cost them and by sending an estimate to him/her so he/she can see in advance the approximate work hours and the cost of your work could easily mean that the work will be yours. Furthermore, if your client is satisfied with the price you can turn your estimates/quotes into invoices with just a few clicks.
Track and record your expenses easily with an online accounting solution; take a snapshot of a receipt and the software processes it for you. If the expense is to be refunded, just attach it to an invoice and let the client pay it for you.
This (extra) feature not only lets your co-workers log their work time on their own, but it also automatically creates neat reports for tax purposes. Furthermore, you can pay your employees easier by choosing direct deposit or check.
Integrating Other Software and Services
Another great feature of a decent cloud accounting solution is its capability of being integrated with various third-party software—if the company of your chosen solution offers and supports an API. If it does, than you only have to give the necessary permissions to your accounting software and all your data from the other software will be synced from then on. Moreover, there are plenty types of software that could be integrated into an accounting solution: invoicing tools, inventory management software, time tracking add-ons and many more.
Such a third-party service is WorkflowMax, an all-in-one workflow software for quotes, time sheets, job management invoices and many more. Or there is Co-construct, which is intended for constructors like you to manage and change orders, scheduling, budgets, communication and so on. Hungry for more? You could also integrate GeoOp which has a GPS tracking feature, TinyBuild and BuilderTREND which perfectly work as project management tools, Fleetmatics WORK (formerly Connect2Field) which dispatches jobs to your employees via a mobile app, Corecon, simPRO and the list goes on.
Online Accounting Solutions Recommended for You
Choosing the right accounting solution is not easy for business owners, and it is true for those working in the construction business as well. However, as hard it might seem at first, please take into consideration our recommendations for construction businesses: Freshbooks and Xero. Remember: you can choose another software, but with any of these two we guarantee you won’t be disappointed.
FreshBooks is a full-fledged accounting software ideal for small businesses, including those engaging in construction activities. This user-friendly accounting solution comes with everything you need: clever and easy expense tracking, creating and managing projects, a handy time tracking add-on, and auto-generated business reports for easier tax filing. Furthermore, you can use almost all of these features in the stellar iOS and Android apps too, you can integrate 38 different third party services – from expense tracking, to payroll and customer management tools. You also have the option to choose from four pricing plans, which only differ in the number of clients you can invoice, and you get a 30-day free trial and an outstanding customer service.
New-Zealand-based online accounting solution Xero is the No. 1 choice of over 600k different businesses worldwide. You not only get all the most important features of a decent accounting software like invoicing, billing, expenses, quoting, estimating, but you can also prepare and file your 1099s, and you can easily pay your employees with the extra payroll feature. The software comes with an iOS and Android app, which can serve as a second step in the two-step secure authentication process, and integrates with over 400 different software, including all of those we listed above. What else does Xero have up its sleeve? Let’s see: 24/7 customer service, a 30-day long trial period and three pricing packages.