The number of small businesses in the country is growing, and for a while we thought that accounting software were never going to catch up.
One of two things needed to happen: either people had to get smarter, be more organized, and find more time in their day to process all their book keeping—or the act of accounting had to become more accommodating.
Well, I don’t know if we’re any smarter, organized, or efficient at what we do—but one thing is certain: Vancouver-based Kashoo, an online and mobile accounting application, is revolutionizing the way small companies establish and maintain their business. The result is no more headaches, neglected invoices, and taxing shoebox of receipts.
“Every small business owner hates accounting and record keeping,” Jim Secord, CEO of Kashoo, told Techvibes in an interview. “It’s hard to do, it’s confusing, and the tools are antiquated—there is QuickBooks or Simply Accounting. With the advent of Cloud and mobile, we saw an opportunity to do it a lot differently. Not only to make it easier, but to make it more convenient. And really disrupt the accounting software world that largely went unchanged for the past 20 years.”
Harnessing the possibilities of touch screen features and mobile convenience, Kashoo is making rock stars out of accountants. The old image of a tepid individual in a dimly lit room, with empty cups of coffee, file folders and a calculator on the desk is no longer a correct portrait of accountants—today with smartphones, tablets, and portable computers, anybody can be an accountant.
“I don’t think software can ever replace [accounting] expertise,” said Kasey Bayne, Kashoo’s director of business development. “With Kashoo, accountants aren’t doing things like entering your receipts—but more high value things such as business planning and making smarter decisions. More like a business advisor type of role.”
Some people cringe at the word “accounting,” but Kashoo is doing more than changing people’s opinion—they’re gaining popularity success. After iOS 7 was released in September, Kashoo had been the top 10 business apps in 83 countries, top five in 54 countries and number one in Canada.
“Accounting software is pretty much international,” said Secord. “For a small business person, whether you are running it in Canada or if you are running it in Nigeria—it’s very similar.”
The app has over 100,000 registered small businesses in over 180 countries. Kashoo’s iPad app is currently available in English, Spanish and French (with Japanese and German in development).
All in one, but still focused on the specific needs of small businesses, Kashoo offers features that allow users to track income and expenses, making the worrisome annual tax season less of a chore. Features including a built in camera to capture receipts, a quick expense entry function and on-the-go invoicing, not only makes the job easier for business owners, but they’ll be inclined to do it.
“A lot of time, it comes down to the expenses,” said Secord. “There are tens of millions of dollars that small business people in Canada lose because they’re just not organized with their records. They don’t claim the proper deductions.”
With technology becoming so accessible, work and personal life are blending together—so why not make it easier? Kashoo enables users the flexibility of managing business even on vacation. Although some may be repulsed by the idea of having work everywhere, the ability to operate anywhere anytime is a liberating advantage.
On October 10, Kashoo announced its partnership with Paychex, a leading provider of payroll, human resources, and other solutions for small to medium size businesses. Collaboration was more logical than strategic, since both companies have overlapping qualities. Those who use Kashoo will also use Paychex and vise versa.
“[Paychex] recognized the synergy of having an accounting software with payroll software,” said Secord. “When people are starting a business or when their business gets to a point—it may be two or three years—and they say maybe it’s time to get organized and stop running out of a shoebox or an envelope and handing it over to the accountant. Paychex understood that and if they wanted more payroll customers, then why don’t they offer accounting software. They looked around, found Kashoo, and said that is the accounting software they wanted to offer.”