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  • Pros & Cons of Bench: Analysis of a Leading Accounting Software

Pros & Cons of Bench: Analysis of a Leading Accounting Software

Category: B2B News
What are the pros and cons of Bench?
The pros and cons of Bench are seen in its robust and competitive set of tools for streamlining your bookkeeping process. It helps you to consolidate financial statements, requirements and data sets, plus, it has communication and reporting tools secured with military-grade data encryption. While it helps you to focus on planning and decision making, Bench could use some measures to minimize synchronization issues with other platforms. All in all, Bench is a value-for-money bookkeeping software able to streamline your processes for organizational efficiency.

Bookkeeping involves a lot of grunt work: daily transactions and financial information to retrieve, deadlines to meet and books to close immediately. Accounting solutions offer a robust and intuitive set of tools for you to streamline your bookkeeping and accounting requirements. In particular, Bench gives you a team of three dedicated bookkeepers who will be tasked in consolidating, gathering and finalizing financial statements for your business. It also equips users with well-curated reporting and analytics, high-level data encryption unlimited CPA and tax support and more.

Is this software for you?

To find out, you can scan through several individual reviews, or, you can simply read below our findings on the pros and cons of Bench, one of the top accounting platforms, to help you determine its suitability to your business. You will learn below its strengths and weaknesses, beginning with bookkeeping, financial analytics and tax management support, down to ease of use, integration and mobile support.

Whether you are already familiar with the benefits and features of accounting software, you’ll find this Bench pros and cons guide a good reference for your next purchase decision.

bench pros and cons

Bookkeeping is considered a huge pain point among business owners in the U.S. A report by Score says that as much as 40% of business owners regard taxation and accounting processes as the most burdensome part of business management. Forty-seven percent (47%) regard paperwork as the worst, 23% stated that the complexity of compliance requirements are a source of major headaches and 13% agreed that administrative issues a big roadblock. While absolutely a highly tedious and manual process, bookkeeping is a significant business process. This is because it involves the careful and precise recording of all daily transactions of the business. It is also a major block piece of any financially-stable business. Bookkeeping processes produce day-to-day financials such as credits and debits, payrolls, ledgers and more, which serve as a crucial source of insight for accountants who use this information to develop financial models that will drive the business forward.

Despite being considered a huge pain point among a significant number of business owners, bookkeeping need not be difficult. There are already technologies and tools available which you can use to streamline and automate your bookkeeping processes. Now is the perfect time for you to get your hands on these solutions. Only around 14% of small businesses resort to cloud accounting, meaning, the majority of businesses deal with the process through in-house, paperwork-heavy procedures.

Gaps that can be fixed by cloud accounting (credits: Cogneesol).

When choosing the right platform for streamlining your bookkeeping process, consider the modules or activities that you wish to avail. Majority of accounting software offer tools for reporting and analysis, which is a major source of insight for strategic planning. You also should watch out for standard accounting coverage. Will the platform cover all your bases in terms of simplifying your workflows to produce quality and precise financial statements? Also consider the user-friendliness, integration and productivity as well as additional features such as inventory management and payroll. Of course, the solution you ultimately select need not cover all these features. Carefully determine what pain points you have to address as well as processes to streamline. If you want to know more about how cloud accounting work for you, you can try to understand how you can maximize accounting software for your business. 

Likewise, if you’re a small business owner, you should also determine if free accounting software is suitable for your business. You should also know that there are industry-specific solutions, for instance, accounting solutions for retail or accounting software for manufacturing. As for Bench, it can adapt to a variety of industries, making it a flexible system that can match your unique workflows.

What is Bench?

Streamlining your bookkeeping process has never been this easier with Bench.

Bench gives you all the tools you need to streamline your bookkeeping process and generate quality financial statements and reports to drive growth. Unlike most accounting software in the market, it takes away the cumbersome process of bookkeeping from the business and deploys its team of bookkeepers. It also offers reporting and analytics tools, communications and tax support as well as military-grade data encryption to protect your business’ integrity.

The vendor offers a generous free trial. You can sign up for Bench free trial here.

Bench Accounting

An award given to products our B2B experts find especially valuable for companies

Bench Accounting won our Expert's Choice Award for 2019

Our score
9.1
User satisfaction
94%

Bench’s strength also lies in its intuitive and easy to use platform. With primary support for web, iOS and Android, you can view financial insights anywhere and anytime. What’s more: Bench subscriptions come with a 256-bit SSL/TSL encryption. Your data is safe and secure from prying, malicious eyes.

Here’s a list of some of Bench’s most notable features:

  1. Actual, dedicated bookkeepers
  2. Interactive financial statements
  3. Helpful visual reports
  4. Year-end financial packages
  5. Intuitive software
  6. Data sharing
  7. Military grade-security and encryption
  8. Flexible and open communications
  9. Easy categorizations
  10. Tax and CPA support
  11. Income statement
  12. Balance sheet
  13. Trial balance
  14. Journal entry summary
  15. General ledger

Bench Pros & Cons

Bookkeeping Support

With Bench, you are given a dedicated team of bookkeepers who will take care of all your bookkeeping needs. Bench bookkeepers are reliable and heavily trained to deal with small business owners, so you get an efficient and quick team to get the job done– importing bank statements, categorizing and sorting transactions and preparing monthly financial and bank statements. Bench gives you a team of 3 well-trained bookkeepers to review and consolidate all your financial information and your year-end financial package.

What would take months for you to complete and consolidate can be accomplished in just a matter of weeks. Once Bench receives all the requested documents, all your bookkeeping requirements for the given month can be accomplished within 15 business days.

With Bench, all your worries or questions can be answered in a matter of minutes. It features an in-app messaging platform so you can communicate with your bookkeeping team anytime and anywhere.

Reporting and Analytics

The solution’s bookkeeping module also features a powerful and interactive reporting functionality. Through the in-app or web-based platform, you can have a quick glimpse of how your business is faring overall. Quantitative analytics such as monthly and overall revenue, expenses and profit can be quickly viewed. You also get precise delivery of your Income Statement and Balance Sheets. These data help you make bolder, smarter decisions to grow your business.

Enable sound business strategy through Bench’s intuitive reporting module.

Financial Packages

Bench also consolidates all the financial information you need to process tax payments, including all your income statements, balance sheets, trial balances, journal entry summaries and general ledgers. Through the in-app or web platform, for example, you get a comprehensive breakdown of your income statement, from revenues, cost of sales, gross profits, down to operating expenses. All financial summaries can then be downloaded as Excel files, so you can easily deploy this to top management and your team. 

Bench lets you generate financial reports to fast-track strategic planning.

Intuitive Platform

Every business owner needs a solution that is intuitive and user-friendly. With Bench, your team can accomplish the majority of your transactions and bookkeeping requirements. Your team can enjoy seamless and effortless management of financial transactions with just a few taps or clicks. It also allows multiple logins to your Bench account, so all your people are on the same boat in overseeing, managing, implementing and delivering financial requirements.

Bench also comes with communication tools you need to effectively navigate with your team. You can send in messages or questions to your team, either through your computer or your mobile device. Instant mobile notifications ensure that you are always updated on your financials.

Data and Team Security 

Your data is the backbone of every successful decision. With Bench, your data is safeguarded with a 256-bit SSL/TSL encryption, the level of encryption typically required in the financial services, retail, and banking industry.

Also, Bench employees go through a thorough screening process, background, and criminal checks, so you can be assured that you on-board a team that is thorough, honest, and effective enough for the job.

Tax and CPA Support 

Bench goes beyond the terms of the contract. It can link you to tax experts so you can effortlessly and painlessly file your taxes. If your CPA has trouble working through your books, the Bench team can work directly with your CPA to bring order and save you from all the unnecessary grunt work.

iOS, Android, and Web Support 

Bench uses its own proprietary software to get all your books done. It connects with bank and merchant processor accounts as a source of truth for data transfer. It also takes care of other bookkeeping needs and you just have to submit pertinent financial information on the cloud. 

However, if you are a Mac user, it may be useful to try other accounting software for Mac.

Bookkeep anytime, anywhere with Bench’s iOS and Android support. It makes for a seamless, convenient platform to help you manage your books on the go.

Risk in Deploying Bookkeepers

Real, actual bookkeepers are the bread and butter of Bench’s bookkeeping module. They take care of all the procedural requirements, especially in consolidating and categorizing all your financial information to come up with statements and reports.

People come and go due to a number of reasons. Your best performing bookkeeper can just disappear one day due to personal or professional reasons. Perhaps one of the things Bench can work in the future is establishing a system so that there is less risk in deploying bookkeepers for its clients, enabling quicker turnover and prevent steep learning curves from seeping into the business process.

Synchronization With Other Bookkeeping Software

Previous users of other bookkeeping software will find it difficult transferring data to Bench. While a process is in place to successfully consolidate and sort required financial information, it can prove to be tedious and demanding for the end-users. Perhaps Bench can work on functionality to enable seamless and easy data transfer from other accounting software.

Getting a Free Trial is the Best Way To Test

Bench offers you a competitive roster of tools to fully automate the bookkeeping process for your business. Its unique proposition of deploying its own set of bookkeepers for its clients makes a bold statement all on its own. Its communication, data consolidation and security modules cut your costs and unnecessary grunt work.

Although it could definitely work on deploying measures to minimize the loss, absence or attrition of its in-house bookkeepers as well as lack of synchronization features, it makes up for it through a system that is rigorous, efficient, and user-friendly. You will be amazed as to how Bench can seamlessly take away bookkeeping as a major pain point for your business. You can sign up for Bench free trial here

By Jenny Chang

Senior writer at FinancesOnline who writes about a wide range of SaaS and B2B products, including trends and issues on e-commerce, accounting and customer service software. She’s also covered a wide range of topics in business, science, and technology for websites in the U.S., Australia and Singapore, keeping tabs on edge tech like 3D printed health monitoring tattoos and SpaceX’s exploration plans.

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