Three Step Approach in Selecting the Right Time, Expense and Invoicing Software

There are so many Time, Expense and Invoicing Software applications in the market so how can small businesses decide which software is the right one for them? How can small companies be absolutely sure that they have selected the correct solution and their dollars are well spent? Here are 3 key criteria that will make their decision easier:

1. What are my company requirements?

Every small organization’s needs differ in terms of their core requirements for Time, Expense and Billing solution. Some may be tracking time and expenses to manage the project budget effectively while others want to generate professional invoices. In addition, many other companies may need to impress the clients and their contractors with a personalized Time and Expense system which also automates the approval process.

No matter what your requirements are, you need to ensure that the system is extremely user friendly and the core requirements are fulfilled by the software. Most small companies just require the following from a Time, Expense and Invoicing software:

– 24×7 system availability.
– Online and easy to use.
– Time and Expense with manager approvals.
– Easily duplicate time, expenses or invoices.
– Excel based single user Time and Expense (T&E) upload or Bulk upload where the administrator uploads all timesheets.
– Manual or Project Time and Expense based invoice generation.
– Recurring invoice generation.
– Automatic attachment of Time & Expense with Invoice.

While these features are the key feature required by most companies, there may be some additional things that may be very much specific to their business i.e. most consulting organization personnel may need signatures on printed timesheets from the client manager while submitting Time & Expenses internally to company management for invoicing. Such features are rather important to consulting companies and may be available only in specialized software applications.

2. How much does it cost?

Most aspiring companies want to take advantage of professional software to boost productivity rather than using outdated methods of maintaining records in Word/Excel. Cloud based Time and Expense tracking and invoicing software not only gives a faster 24×7 means to enter time & expenses online but also provides total control over your account receivables. When it comes to deciding which cloud based software you have to choose, a cost benefit analysis is required.

While the company user base is small, the difference in cost of most online software systems is hardly noticeable. However, the cost can increase quickly especially if the company expands and increases the subscription to multiple users. Keeping the cost down is important for most small companies.

Instead of spending an exorbitant sum for functionality that you don’t need and won’t use in Time & Expense software, it may be wiser to subscribe to a more economical package that meets all your core requirements.

Additionally, small companies can decide on the best Time & Expense software that meets their needs by signing up for an extended free trial. This free trial will help ensure that they make the right choice for their business.

3. Should I adopt cloud based software?

Software and hardware requirement, installation, maintenance and upgrade of any system can be a drain on small business time and money.

With cloud based services offer a number of advantages without the headache of installation and upgrade from time to time:

– No upfront investment, start using the system in minutes
– Pay as you go, no hidden costs
– No worries about backups, everything is in the cloud
– No software/hardware required

Subscription based Software as a Service (SaaS) may be the best option for small companies due to distinct advantaged mentioned above and lower cost of ownership.
If you are a small business with requirements track, report and invoice time and expenses, you might find the information particularly helpful.