There are the number of accounting software used across Australia. The country has some small and large organisations that use accounting software. Sonar argued that the use of accounting software depends on the number of factors. The need for the accounting software for large organisations may not be the same as the need for the accounting software for small or mid-size organisations. By definition, accounting software defines a type of software that accounts and practices accounting communications inside functional units such as accounts receivable, accounts payable, trial balance and payroll. It purposes as an accounting data system. The objective of this paper is to discuss the literature review on the accounting software packages that are being used in Australia.
The market for accounting software is a matured market. The history of accounting software goes back to 1990s. Before the 1990s, there were some players in the market. After the 1990s, the market observed a consolidation phase. In the current market conditions, the market is divided into the organised segment and unorganised segment. The significant and third-party players like Microsoft, Xero, Kashoo Accounting Software, Working Point Accounting software, etc. rule the market. The large companies would typically use the high-end accounting software that could be integrated with the ERP (Employee Resource Planning) products. The ERP systems like Microsoft Dynamics would have a combined module of accounting.
The research suggests that the organisations can have various ways to use accounting software. The firms can use the ‘on-premise’ installations of accounting software, or the firms can use the cloud version of the accounting software. In recent times, there has been a trend in the industry of using the cloud-based accounting software. In fact, the Australian market has witnessed a transformation from on-premise installation to cloud-based accounting software.
In the field of organised accounting business, Microsoft is one of a market leader. Microsoft offers various types of accounting software installation options like on-premise, on a cloud, software as a service, platform as a service, etc. In recent times, the market share of Microsoft and other companies have seen an increase in the percentage of cloud-based accounting software implementation. There are various advantages of cloud-based accounting software. It helps the organisations to minimise the cost. With the on-cloud deployment, the organisations are not required to make an initial investment towards hardware. One of the tricky tasks for administration is to manage operational and capital expenses. The revenue collected from customers can help to maintain operational costs but the decisions around capital investments are always challenging to make. With ever-changing technology and development, organisations operating in the different industry have to make the capital investment on a regular and continuous basis, and the use of cloud-based accounting system enables the organisation to optimise the operational expenses. It is imperative that employees, internal stakeholders and external stakeholders should support the administration in these decisions.
There was a time when the accounting software in Australia was primarily being used by the vast organisations only. However, with the use of cloud computing and the use of cloud base accounting software implementation, the small organisations have also started to use the accounting software. The method of accounting systems and software also enables the organisations to emerge as process-based organisations. The movement to a process-based organisation is more comfortable said than done; however, and Creed, Daly and his fellows warned the transformation into a process-based organisation is a challenge despite what the books describe. From a top manager and middle manager perspective, the shift toward integration means employee collaboration and centralisation of certain functions and patience with the organisation’s plans to achieve organisational outcomes. Cultivating cross-functional process teams will shift organisations to a process-based organisation, and cross-functional teams will help transform value-added processes industry best practices.
There are various theories that describe the use of accounting software for firms in Australia and the firms at a global level. Taylor’s approach has a significant impact on the contemporary organisational design being that it was one of the first designs to communicate how to efficiently run an organisation systematically with the use of integrated accounting software. The way this theory described the organisation and people as a running machine puts in perspective how the organisations should be. Also, how Taylor states that the mind can be rebooted and programmed shows that the direction of an organisation can be done many different ways and it is up to those who run it to determine how it should best run with the of ERP systems and accounting software. From this theory, many other methods can and have been birthed. This theory provides the perfect foundation to build upon in efforts to create many different ways to establish a more contemporary designed organisation.
There are certain gaps in the current use of accounting software that could be bridged by the organisations. In fact, there are organisations that are working continuously to bridge this gap. One of the weaknesses is the limited use of accounting software by the large organisations. It is observed that the use of accounting software is at a reasonable level for the large and established organisations. However, the small organisations in Australia are not able to make the extensive use of accounting software. Another observed gap is in the long-term planning and use of accounting software. It is observed that organisations would decide to invest in the accounting software with a short-term vision. It is essential that the organisations should have a long-term view of the implementation of accounting software. Authors argued that the accounting software should be implemented as a part of the overall ERP or Information System implementation within the organisation. The accounting software should not be considered as a stand-alone implementation. The organisations and stakeholders would be able to make the comprehensive benefits of accounting software implementation only when the software is integrated with other IT systems used in the organisation.
Another gap is in the limited use of accounting software and packages towards fraud detection. Granlund argued that the frauds and insider trading incidents like Enron could have been avoided with the use of accounting software at a workplace. Therefore, it is recommended that the organisations should be able to take full benefits of the implementation of accounting software. In a business relationship, accounting software can also be used to generate the trust factor. It should be even more important to work on the trust factor and to communicate a lack of action if something is in the way of being able to deliver the promised item. It is recommended that the organisations should have a 360-degree view of the business operations while implementing the accounting software. The holistic understanding of the business operations would enable the organisations to derive the maximum benefits from the implementation of accounting software. The use of accounting software in Australia has evolved a lot, and it is expected that this field would continue to grow with the emergence of more and more players. The competition is already high among the existing players, and it is expected that this competition would continue to increase.
It is recommended that the organisations should first analyse the actual need of the accounting software from the different perspective. The inputs from various internal and external stakeholders would enable the management to have a better understanding of demand. Once the need of accounting software is established, the organisation should decide the vendor and the product. There are various products on the market and multiple vendors. For some organisations, the Microsoft Dynamics is the best solution, and for some of the organisations, XERO could be the best option. It is essential that the organisation should use the product that is best suited for their business. Once the organisation has determined the outcome and vendor, the next step for organisations would be to determine the platform to implement the accounting software. There are many means to approach the application of your new accounting structure, and not unexpectedly, some methods work far thoroughly than others. The 1st step in the operation of accounting software practice should begin using a detailed review of the industry necessities and procedures, to recognise what is operational well and that features of the business that might require development and modification. In a nutshell, it can be said that the implementation of the accounting software should be the part of the overall business level strategy of the organisation.
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