The Philippines is currently one of the fastest growing economies in the world. However, you wouldn’t be able to figure that our right away, given that many SME’s are generations behind when it comes to their accounting systems.

Given the affordability and capabilities of modern systems such as SAP Business One, it’s perplexing that many traditional business owners are decades behind the times when it comes to their choice of accounting systems. A lot of this has to do with some misconceptions many Filipino business owners have.  Here are just five of the most commonly cited reasons many refuse to update their systems.

Accounting systems only do accounting, and accounting does not change

Modern accounting systems can cover so many parts of most businesses’ processes that some experts prefer to call these “enterprise resource planning” or “business planning” systems to more accurately describe their functions. A few may avoid using the term “accounting system” or “accounting software” altogether, as they do not accurately describe the scope of capabilities newer software suites and apps are capable of.

Modern apps will typically also have functions related to employee management, payroll, POS, sales, marketing, project management, inventory, and more. With customization, virtually every single routine part of your business can be automated as well. This gives your business immense time savings and allows it to scale up more efficiently with a smaller workforce and fewer resources.

Excel is good enough

Excel is a masterpiece of computing, but it’s no substitute for a purpose-built accounting system or an ERP system. While it will get you by if you only have infrequent transactions, Excel simply ceases to save you time and effort once you find your transaction volume growing significantly.

There is also still a huge chance for human error in Excel, especially when transferring large amounts of data from one place to another. It also gets slower and more bulky the more functions and formulas you add to a spreadsheet. It also integrates poorly with other systems and can significantly slow down reporting.

Cloud storage is unsafe

Traditional business owners – especially in the Philippines – are still not totally on board with the idea of moving their storage and applications to the cloud. Instead, many insist on keeping their applications and data on-site for security purposes. However, keeping data and apps onsite isn’t necessarily secure, especially in the Philippine setting where power outages are rife, and issues with IT administration are often the topic of discussion. One spilled drink or one bad hard drive can often be enough to temporarily cripple a business, and the difficulty of access takes away a significant amount of flexibility from employees.

Given that remote storage and cloud services have service levels that far exceed most local IT departments, you can draw your own conclusions as to whether cloud storage is a mistake if you’re upgrading your accounting system.

Small businesses do not need modern systems

While this is true in the strictest sense of the word “need”, it makes about as much sense as not owning a refrigerator or having running water in your house. As a matter of fact, businesses are far likelier to be able to immediately enjoy the benefits of having an updated accounting system if they are able to implement one early. Switching over to a new ERP suite when the enterprise is already of a considerable size can be a major undertaking, and transitions tend to be less grueling if the business takes the plunge early.

Accounting systems are expensive

While this was true a few generations ago, this is much less true today. The market for modern systems is highly competitive, which has led to many ERP system companies offering free trials or “try before you buy” plans. This means virtually any business can try out SAP Business One and other accounting systems before they make a decision on which one to ultimately get for their business.