If you’re running a business, you probably need to have a software suite for your workers. Regardless of whether they work from one central location or you have them all working remotely because of Covid-19 concerns, they need a software suite on which to accomplish their tasks.
What features the software suite has will depend on what your business does. Still, there are some universalities that all companies with an online presence need.
We’ll take some time today to talk about suite features that your business software should have.
Whether you’re looking for the favorite software option for HOA managers or you have a website design company, accounting capabilities are one thing you’ll need. Your software suite needs to be able to do things like:
- Monitor various billing cycles
- Track your inventory
- Bill your customers
Accounting software features give you a real-time business health snapshot. You can use your software suite’s accounting features to process and record basic accounting transactions. You should be able to use them to see what’s happening with your accounts payable department and your payroll as well.
Your software’s accounting features should allow you to track your customer financial relationships over time. They will give you customer base insight.
When you use your software’s accounting capabilities, they allow you to see which are your most valuable customers. You can see which ones you’ve billed the most over the years and which ones have been the most loyal. You should give these customers preferential treatment.
For businesses, email also matters a great deal. That is because:
- It’s often your best customer communication method
- You can use it for individual or mass employee communications
If you use email for customer contact, you don’t have to call them. Some customers might feel like calling is invasive, so email emerges as the better solution.
You can also use email to contact your employees on a one-on-one basis, or you could send out a mass email at the start of a workday if you want to remind the whole company about something.
You want your business software suite to have documentation capabilities. You need to document various business aspects virtually every day. Those might include presentations, public statements, posts for the company blog, etc.
Because of this, word processing must be part of your software suite. You need it for correspondence, anything you or your copywriters write for your website, and more.
What Are Some Options for These Features?
Most companies consider Microsoft Office the go-to for the features we mentioned. Many businesses use it, and some believe it to be the gold standard.
Microsoft Office includes Word, which is a well-known word processing app. It features Excel, which is a spreadsheet program. You can use it for all kinds of things, including assigning and keeping track of employee tasks.
PowerPoint also comes with Microsoft Word. It is slideshow presentation software that you can use during employee meetings or when you’re showing a would-be client precisely how your services can help them.
Microsoft Office is popular, but it’s also not cheap. Word and PowerPoint go for $139.99 each if you get them by themselves. If you want the whole package that also comes with Excel ad Outlook, that’s $199.99.
Are There Cheaper Alternatives?
You can certainly find some cheaper service alternatives. For instance, if you want reliable, basic email functionality, you can use something like GoDaddy. It will give you your own domain and email account.
You might also use a free online email account. Yahoo, Gmail, and Hotmail are all viable options.
You can hire a company to create a customized software suite for you. You might want to do this if you feel like you have some needs that a regular software suite does not provide. Whether that’s the case depends on what exactly your business does and whether your needs align with what the suites for sale provide.
For instance, you might need something like CRM, or client small business database software. It keeps track of your customers and relationships. However, something like that usually only works if you’re a smaller company and don’t have that many clients.
Whatever you choose, think about functionality and price over everything else. You want an affordable option, but you also need your software to handle all your business needs. Remember that your software suite is a tax write off, so at least you have that going for you.