Customer and revenue software programs fall into three major categories:
- Industry-specific customer relationship management (CRM) software. Examples include:
- ProCare – for child care centers
- VETbuddy – for veterinarian clinics
- TherapyNotes – for mental health providers
- GotSoccer – for organizations that manage soccer programs
- Donor management (DM) software. Examples include:
- Neon CRM – robust integration with QuickBooks Online, can import to classes and items in addition to accounts.
- Bloomerang — has a customizable export to QuickBooks Online that includes accounts and classes.
- Network for Good – thorough on donor management functions, does not integrate with QuickBooks
- Point-of-sale (POS) software for retail or restaurant operations
Benefits of CRM, DM and POS Software
CRM, DM and POS software can:
- Facilitate customer invoicing and make it easier for customers to pay, which greatly improves cash flow;
- Organize detailed customer information;
- Document the history of interactions with customers;
- Enable healthcare providers to comply with HIPAA laws surrounding patient privacy; and
- Accumulate information on products and services sold.
Not a Complete Accounting System
However, CRM, DM and POS software do not make a complete accounting system. They can help you with the revenue process, but they do not paint a complete picture of your operations.
CRM, DM and POS software accumulate financial transactions that impact cash, receivables and income. These transactions need to be entered into the organization’s accounting system so their effects can be included on the organization’s balance sheet and profit & loss reports. We have helped many organizations that use one or more of the above types of software incorporate it into a complete accounting system.
Integration with QuickBooks
Sometimes CRM, DM and POS software will integrate with QuickBooks. (We primarily work with QuickBooks, but the information applies regardless of which accounting software you use.) In other words, you can import data from the software into QuickBooks Desktop or QuickBooks Online. Sometimes you even have options about how summarized or detailed you want the transactions to be when they are imported. Integrating software with QuickBooks can save a great deal on bookkeeping time and improve accuracy.
Reasons for Not Integrating with QuickBooks
But integration is not always a good thing. Reasons you may NOT want to import transaction detail:
- You want to leave all the messy details in the CRM, DM or POS software and only bring summarized information into QuickBooks. Especially if transactions become voluminous, why clutter up QuickBooks with all those transactions and customer names?
- Importing transaction detail can be fraught with errors such as duplicate customers or transactions that for whatever reason do not import correctly. It’s not always the time saver it’s cracked up to be.
- The software does not offer an import option that makes use of the accounts, classes and location codes you have set up in QuickBooks to facilitate reporting.
Sometimes manual entry of summarized information from the CRM, DM or POS software is the best way to go.
Typically reports of transactions can be exported from the CRM, DM or POS software into Excel. From there you can use pivot tables, filters, or other methods to summarize data. Or you may be able to pull reports summarized the way you want them directly from the software. The trick is being able to agree monthly revenue to cash deposits into the bank account and changes in accounts receivable, if applicable.
Once you have your data from the CRM, DM or POS software summarized appropriately, then you can use a summary sales receipt to enter the activity into QuickBooks. A summary sales receipt can be prepared daily, weekly, or monthly depending on your needs.
To Integrate or Not….
Each system is different so this answer changes based on the needs of the organization and the software that is utilized. Your organization should carefully evaluate the software involved and your accounting and management needs before making this decision. We will discuss more about manual entry in the next post explaining summary sales receipts.