Home – New Forums Tech talk All in one accouting, CRM etc. Who?

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  • #988184
    dangaff
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    Coming up to EOFY I might consider moving to a fresh new system and start from day 1 of the new financial year.

    Instead of having an accounting and CRM (plus any other functions like SCM etc.) separate and constantly having to double enter. Can anyone recommend an all in one kit they know of or use?

    Is it possible to find anything for under $500-1000 or are these systems more for the companies who can afford custom systems?

    It would be handy if I can invoice someone whilst the CRM side automatically gets the data and does its thing to tell me more about the customer.

    Is it possible to get a system with email running through it so you can connect any conversational history to a customer?

    Thanks

    #1166029
    al.giffard
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    Hi Dangaff,

    Most of the cloud-based accounting systems out there now have a community of ‘add-on’ programs that interact fairly seamlessly with the accounting system. A complete and reasonably priced system is hard to come by, but chances are you can get the same outcome with a couple of systems working together.

    For example, plenty of the Xero Add-ons allow you to create customers and invoices from the Add-on program, and those customers and the full invoice details are automatically sent across to Xero (or vice versa). They’re separate systems, but they typically talk to each other automatically and instantly.

    With the CRM side of things, I’ve seen Capsule CRM at work and it sounds like it can do what you’re looking for: http://capsulecrm.com/, if you want to have a look.

    Other CRM programs that interact with Xero are at http://www.xero.com/au/add-ons/crm/. Quickbooks Online has a list of Add-ons at http://www.intuit.com.au/quickbooks-online/add-ons.jsp

    Hope that helps,

    Al.

    #1166030
    Daniel Mitchell
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    Hi there

    I agree completely with Alan and you will find that finding integration between the various cloud offerings is definitely achievable and will allow you to eliminate the double (triple, quadruple…) handling that you may be imagining from separate systems. For small businesses there is great benefit to utilising cloud providers, but you will need to consider whether you are happy with the SaaS (software as a service, i.e. monthly charges) model and benefits compared to buying something and managing it yourself.

    There are definitely a lot of things to weigh up when you look at an option such as this, but it does give you a lot of flexibility to find products that best fit your business in each area rather than having to compromise on particular features. Xero is great (although not without fault) and the add-on partners are pretty diverse, but there are tools like OneSaas and Zapier which enable even further integration between products which may not be a Xero partner. I recently went through an exercise to find the best cloud-based CRM package, time tracking and project management software and after trialling over 30 products there were approximately 10 which I thought were fantastic but didn’t fit my business exactly. I also originally wanted something that integrated everything together but only by splitting the functionality out to separate products was I able to come up with a solution that fits my workflow.

    Capsule CRM is really good value for money, although limited, and depending on your requirements may not be the best option or will need to be combined with additional products. There really is no ‘one size fits all’ or ‘perfect’ product so you’re going to need to do some research to find the best option for your business. I’d start by thinking about your current software and list all the things you love about it vs the things you hate, identify areas you think your business could improve (streamline processes, unlock new marketing opportunities etc.) and then work out what this is all worth to you. From there you can research and trial the various options and come up with what is going to work best for you. If you have any questions about specific products then I’d be happy to help and no doubt there are plenty of members who can also offer their opinion, but really without knowing exactly what you want to achieve then it’s hard to give any specifics. I’d be happy to discuss your requirements with you further if you want any further advice about the best way to go.

    All the best in your search.

    #1166031
    EthiSEC
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    If you want an all in on expandable solution have a look at JCurve, it isn’t cheap but it has all of the fictionality you could want. Because it is a slimmer version of NetSuite this means you can upgrade to NS if you have the need.

    Jason

    #1166032
    dangaff
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    Thanks everyone, I replied to this earlier today but appears not to be showing.

    I’ll make it short.

    I was starting to lean towards Xero but then once I pay for the standard package @ $50 a month, plus add-ons from $10-20 each per month. It seems actually better to go with JCurve which offers all the same stuff (potentially more) for the same price (or less once you include the Xero add-ons).

    Does anyone know more about JCurve? As in, what’s actually included in the $49 per month.

    Are all the standard features included? Are the “advanced features” excluded or included in the price?

    I’ve emailed them but thought I’d ask here anyway since I’m replying twice.

    #1166033
    EthiSEC
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    They are usually pretty quick to contact you when you initiate the conversation, if you send me a PM with your email address I’ll forward you what I have.

    Jason

    #1166034
    dangaff
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    EthiSEC, post: 192350 wrote:
    They are usually pretty quick to contact you when you initiate the conversation, if you send me a PM with your email address I’ll forward you what I have.

    Jason

    Will do now. Thanks a lot

    #1166035
    arrowwise
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    There is a solution called worketc which can handle many aspects in one combined system (even gmail integration to a point). Worth a look at.

    Nothing beats devising your own system to do exactly what you need done, however the cost to build and support / maintain such a system when you’re starting out makes it not viable.

    #1166036
    dangaff
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    Thanks for that. It looks really promising, especially tge Gmail integration.

    Apparently I’ve been told JCurve has a $2,500 “setup” fee which they sure don’t advertise on their site.

    As long as Worketc doesn’t have any hidden fees and it’s truly $79 a month then I reckon it’ll be a winner. I’ll have a better look on the computer tomorrow.

    #1166037
    dangaff
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    Having a further look at Worketc now.

    That’s the problem with these websites, I can never tell what’s actually included in each package.

    For $79/month (starter package) – I don’t know know how much of the features they advertise (all of them or a few of them?) are included in the starter package.

    I’ll await their call back.

    #1166038
    Daniel Mitchell
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    I’m sure that all these hidden prices work well for them in generating leads and drawing as much money from you as possible, but it’s definitely frustrating when you are trying to compare products. Unless the product looks amazing I usually ignore it if they don’t have visible pricing to compare with their competitors, and unsurprisingly it is usually the ones who cost the most who aren’t completely up front with their prices.

    My problem with all-in-one solutions is that while I’m a small business myself I still require the premium functionality that you normally only get with their top-level plans and Worketc for example would cost me $395 per month for 3 users, although it does sound like good software. Because part of my job as a consultant is to use technology to streamline business processes I’m pretty demanding on exactly what I want and I like the flexibility of being able to pick and choose who I use for each area. I’m always looking for new software and I like that I can integrate them all together and move around as much as I need.

    I can understand the concerns though (integration, different UIs, hard to learn multiple programs etc.) and if you have relatively simple requirements then something like Jcurve or Worketc could definitely be a good option.

    All the best in your search and let us know what you end up choosing.

    #1166039
    dangaff
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    All I really need it to do is three things

    • Accounting – all the usual stuff, invoicing, reconciliation, bills, reports etc.
    • Database – a database of products, customers and then reporting regarding each or some.
    • Newsletters – the ability to use said database and make a newsletter
    • If possible, email integration

    I don’t need all the sales flow and projects and time sheets and all that.

    I don’t think I’m being too demanding am I?

    #1166040
    Daniel Mitchell
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    dangaff, post: 192648 wrote:
    All I really need it to do is three things

    • Accounting – all the usual stuff, invoicing, reconciliation, bills, reports etc.
    • Database – a database of products, customers and then reporting regarding each or some.
    • Newsletters – the ability to use said database and make a newsletter
    • If possible, email integration

    I don’t need all the sales flow and projects and time sheets and all that.

    I don’t think I’m being too demanding am I?

    No not at all, but the problem with the tiered pricing models is that they purposely structure it so that some small feature you want is in a higher price bracket than the basic offering. I could be wrong but looking at it again I’m not sure Worketc offers the accounting that you need, plus the email marketing looks to only be available in the Team plan (which mentions Accounting integration as well). At $195 a month that will be off your list.

    JCurve sounds like a good product but if they’re charging that much as a setup fee then I think they price themselves out of the market. What does this setup fee supposedly cover? They offer a free trial so you must be able to set most of it up yourself and I’d be interested to know whether that fee is optional for data import, setup etc. and whether you could do it yourself if you wanted to. I’m not sure that the email marketing is included in the Standard package though so there may be further charges here.

    Saasu could be a good choice for you and for $35 will do your accounting, very basic CRM & inventory; it’s not quite as polished as Xero, but it’s pretty close and much cheaper. It won’t do your newsletter though, but Mailchimp would be a great choice. You might be able to get away with the free plan, but you will probably want to link the contacts between Saasu and Mailchimp. To do that you will need to use a 3rd party service called OneSaas and depending on your size could be as little as $10 a month. You’ve then got the flexibility to add other things later and integrate them back together. This may or may not be the best option for you and hopefully somebody can recommend an all-in-one solution with competitive pricing.

    #1166041
    Toot
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    Hi Dangaff,

    Just wondering how you went with finding more info on Worketc?

    Which software do you run at the moment for accounting, CRM, etc.?

    #1166042
    dangaff
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    Thanks for the recommendations Daniel. I’ll have a look now and as I already have a MailChimp account – could work quite well.

    How easy is it to integrate the 3rd party add-ons?

    Toot – Worketc haven’t replied to anything yet in the way of phone calls/emails – I’ll need to check the voicemail and see if they actually have.

    I’ll try email them now.

    For CRM, none. For accounting, just a basic Reckon Accounts (and I mean basic!).

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