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QuickBooks Pushes For Truly Mobile SMB Management

QuickBooks and Android

Data is easy enough to come by. It’s making sense of it on the fly that is difficult. QuickBooks, whose Android app lets users track multiple companies and operations across phones, tells PYMNTS why mobilizing SMBs matters.

Data can be a trickle or a deluge. And for companies that are increasingly reliant on data in real time and in far-flung locations, data management across mobile devices is of increasing importance. Earlier this month, QuickBooks said that it would help simplify the process of managing multiple subscriptions (across companies) in its QuickBooks Online offerings for Android.

John Shapiro, director of product management and payments at Intuit, told PYMNTS that the mobile offerings are aimed at firms that have multiple entities under the corporate umbrella — or, in another scenario, many customers — to see when data was last reconciled through bank statements, which can give insight into what is still pending. As Shapiro noted, QuickBooks integrates across several thousand financial institutions.

In one scenario offered up by the executive, an accounting firm with several, far-flung clients can keep up to date on data that clients need to populate into their own reports for weekly, monthly, even quarterly reporting, without, as Shapiro noted, having to “do all of those tasks under pressure” or even scrambling to find that data.

The value of data collected in the field, so to speak, is magnified, according to Shapiro, with small to mid-sized businesses that are staffed by an average of half a dozen employees but are global in scope and reach. “These firms are often operating across different legal entities,” Shapiro told PYMNTS, with, for example, central operations in the United States but also units and sales that are tied to the United Kingdom and Australia. The data flow across QuickBooks — and now, the newly installed app — allows for frequency of P&L reporting that can take place over a week, month or other tailored timeframe and can be disseminated by email.

Shapiro noted that the QuickBooks availability across Android takes its place in what he termed an “ecosystem” of more than 2,000 apps that connect into QuickBooks in general, and this lets users add reporting details and expand payments ability (in addition to invoicing, payments and ACH options already dovetailing with QuickBooks).

Most small business owners already use roughly 12 to 15 apps to track and run businesses on a daily basis, and Shapiro maintained that, in typical setups, it can take up to 14 steps until a business owner reaches the stage where an eInvoice is ready to be paid. Truncating those steps, of course, leads to better cash flow visibility and cash management.

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