If you’re a small business that received a Paycheck Protection Program (PPP) loan and are scratching your head about how to keep track of it for later tax forgiveness, you’re certainly not alone. That’s just one example of the recent (and ongoing) accounting headaches that small businesses face.

Which brings us to spreadsheets. When small businesses are first getting started, they often rely on QuickBooks or other spreadsheet-based solutions because they’re inexpensive and easy to use for simple accounting. But there comes a time—exemplified by the need to track PPP forgiveness—when small businesses need to leave spreadsheets behind and shift to more advanced accounting solutions. 


When are spreadsheets no longer sufficient?

If your business is growing, or you expect it to grow soon, it’s likely that you will benefit from more advanced, cloud-based accounting software solutions like Sage Intacct. Built-in automations can help you reduce errors and wasted hours devoted to manual data entry. Plus, you can easily create customized reports, graphs, and dashboards—accessible anytime, anywhere—that provide more targeted information to guide your business decisions.


If your business isn’t growing fast right now, it’s possible that spreadsheet-based financial management is holding you back. If staff are spending hours every month on tedious data manipulations in Excel, they’re not spending them on higher-value tasks that could lead to business growth. And if you’re struggling with compliance issues, audit concerns, and integration across business systems, and time-consuming workarounds, those too are likely creating unnecessary risks and costs. 


Another benefit of cloud-based accounting solutions—one that is especially valuable as we deal with the coronavirus crisis—is that you can develop more accurate forecasts and plans for the future of your business. Spreadsheet-based forecasts are time-consuming to create, and often involve a variety of challenges, including version control issues, security risks, and broken links.


With more advanced software solutions like Sage Intacct, you can run your projections faster and create multiple what-if scenarios that can be shared securely with different teams. Your plans, budgets, and actuals remain synchronized, so version control isn’t an issue. And with better forecasts, you can gain more visibility and deeper insights for navigating through challenging times.


Get the support you need

Insero & Co. is a public accounting firm with decades of experience working with businesses and nonprofits of all sizes. Our experts are available to provide consulting and other remote services—whatever you need to help you get through these difficult times.