Intro: QuickBooks Vs. NetSuite

When it comes to choosing an accounting software for the long-term, making the right decision can have drastic impact on your bottom line. After all, every dollar your business makes or spends will pass through the platform, and you’ll be deeply ingrained in the software for years to come. Two clear leaders in the accounting space are QuickBooks and NetSuite. However, NetSuite is a drastically more powerful platform than QuickBooks, so it’s essential to understand the differences between QuickBooks vs NetSuite, and what value each platform can bring your business.

Not only does NetSuite have deeper accounting functionality than QuickBooks, it also includes a laundry list of other features such as CRM, HR, marketing, sales, and more. We’ve put together a QuickBooks/NetSuite comparison so you can understand just how much more can be accomplished with NetSuite. Read on for more.

A computer user compares QuickBooks vs NetSuite

What is QuickBooks?

QuickBooks is a desktop-based accounting software that targets small and medium sized businesses. Founded in 1998, it’s a go-to for new businesses looking for a user-friendly and affordable accounting solution. It’s often considered an entry-level accounting software that’s adopted by many young companies. There are a few different versions, including QuickBooks Enterprise which provides a limited number of features outside of accounting, however, it’s generally regarded as an accounting-only platform.

What is NetSuite ERP?

NetSuite, owned by Oracle, is a cloud-based Enterprise Resource Planning software that’s designed for businesses ranging from small companies to Fortune 100s. From an accounting standpoint, NetSuite can handle everything that QuickBooks does, but also includes a litany of features such as financial management, financial planning, order management, supply chain management, procurement, inventory management, human resources and more.

QuickBooks vs NetSuite: QuickBooks Pros & Cons

Pro: Ease of Use

The easy-to-use software allows you to run basic accounting and financial functions such as payroll, inventory, and sales management with a clean user interface. Non-tech savvy users can typically get accustomed to the software with ease.

Pro: Price

QuickBooks plans can be found for as cheap as $25/month for the basic package, although you’ll likely be paying closer to $70/month to get more users, inventory management, and other key features. The advanced plan costs $150/month.

While the user-friendliness and price point make QuickBooks an attractive option, it has numerous downsides to be aware of.

Con: Limited Functionality

QuickBooks is focused on small-business accounting, and its features stop there. While it allows you to handle your payroll and file your taxes, it lacks when it comes to financial forecasting, multi-business lines, subscription billing, FP&A, e-commerce marketing automation, project management and more. According to NetSuite, “66% of surveyed organizations had challenges with an inability to handle complex accounting needs using QuickBooks before their company moved to NetSuite.” Even the inventory management side, which is available with a “Plus” or “Advanced” plan is limited in its abilities. Any business that wants to remain competitive, knows how important a lot of the aforementioned features are, leading them to seek out other systems to help bridge the gap. This leads us to our next QuickBooks headache: integrations.

Con: Integration Issues

With many QuickBooks users seeking out 3rd party apps and pricey software to bridge the gaps in their QuickBooks instances, real-time integration between all the platforms becomes difficult. This often leads to different systems displaying different data, preventing you from getting an accurate look at your business. Without a full-time IT or analysis team to monitor the data, you’re setting yourself up for poor forecasting and management.

QuickBooks vs NetSuite: Making the right decision is crucial.

Con: Scalability

Most small and medium businesses dream of scaling into larger, more global organizations. While QuickBooks may be sufficient for a small business, companies quickly experience growing pains when they start to scale. New revenue streams and sales channels, capital infusions, increased headcount, remote teams, creation or acquisition of subsidiaries, and changes to the business model are just a few of the many instances that will lead to headaches in QuickBooks. You can learn more about these issues by reading our blog “Time to Graduate to NetSuite from QuickBooks”.

Con: Not Entirely Cloud-Based

QuickBooks is available both online or in a desktop version. The desktop version is more comprehensive, but is less accessible on different devices, mobile, or when you’re out of the office. QuickBooks Online is more accessible, but its features have extra limitations. They do not have a full-powered cloud-based option, which is a big turn off for many.

QuickBooks vs NetSuite: NetSuite Pros & Cons

Pro: Advanced Functionality

Apart from providing accounting features, NetSuite offers clients robust financial management capabilities. Customizable dashboards, workflows, compliance management, and forecasting are just some of the many features that give you deep insight into the health of your organization.

Pro: Includes a Suite of Applications Outside the Accounting Department

You need more than just accounting software to run a successful business. If you’re running accounting on QuickBooks, that leaves you scrambling to find human resources software, project management tools, a CRM, marketing technology, and a whole lot more. Even worse, you have to find a way to integrate all these platforms in order to prevent costly data-entry errors, missing data, and manual labor. Having a single, central system that handles all of these processes saves you time, money, and sanity. If you prefer to integrate to other platforms, NetSuite has a robust API and SuiteApp marketplace to work with.

Pro: Data Integrity

With NetSuite serving as an “all-in-one” solution, you’ll have an easier time managing your data and keeping it clean than ever before. With real-time integration between your accounting, supply chain, inventory, and financials, you can be certain that data is not being misreported or lost. 

Pro: Scalability

NetSuite provides everything that a small business needs to accurately control their finances, inventory, payroll, supply chain, and more. However, one of the biggest perks of NetSuite is its ability to scale for organizations of any size. In fact, roughly 20% of all Fortune 100 companies are currently using NetSuite to optimize their businesses. Businesses who start with QuickBooks then scale in size, are stuck choosing between keeping their legacy system with its shortcomings or engaging in a difficult and time -consuming migration from QuickBooks to NetSuite. This is another reason why NetSuite gains ground in the QuickBooks vs NetSuite debate. By starting early with NetSuite, you’ll be setting your business up for success no matter how large and complex it becomes.

Pro: Customization

One of the biggest perks of NetSuite is its innate ability to be tailored perfectly to your organization. Not only can you control how data flows between different departments, but you have near total control over what can be seen and by whom. Customized fields, saved searches, saved reports, templates, and custom segments are just a few examples of the near countless features that you can tailor to fit your needs. Every business has different objectives, and NetSuite makes it possible to customize your instance to perfection.

Con: Financial Commitment

At over $1,000 per month, NetSuite costs much more than a QuickBooks instance. However, it’s important to point out that NetSuite not only takes the place of your accounting software, but can take the place of numerous other financial and operational systems. When you factor in the cost-savings of having a single solution, along with not having to undergo an expensive QuickBooks to NetSuite migration in the future, the cost of NetSuite is easily justified.

QuickBooks vs NetSuite: Conclusion

Both platforms have their strengths, but there’s a clear winner. When it comes to making the QuickBooks vs NetSuite decision, NetSuite just has so many more features and benefits than QuickBooks. While many small businesses start with QuickBooks, they end up experiencing growing pains when they begin to scale. As most small businesses hope to one day become medium or larger businesses, it makes sense to get ahead of those growing pains, and implement NetSuite in an early stage of the business.

If you started with QuickBooks, and need to do a QuickBooks to NetSuite conversion, it’s not as simple as purchasing a NetSuite instance while letting QuickBooks expire. QuickBooks to NetSuite data migrations are massive projects that require the help of experienced migration experts and consultants. You can learn more about ScaleNorth’s QuickBooks to NetSuite migration services here.

If you’re already on QuickBooks, is a QuickBooks to NetSuite migration worth it? According to NetSuite, “93% of surveyed organizations increased visibility and control over the business since making the switch to NetSuite from Quickbooks.” Not to mention, the longer you wait, and the more data that resides within your QuickBooks, the more complex the migration to NetSuite will become. We advise any small to medium sized businesses to consider migrating to NetSuite before their problems become worse.

Once migrated, you’ll experience easier scalability, increased visibility into the financial health of your organization, simplified supply chain management, more accurate forecasting, improved CRM and sales management, and more.

To get started with implementing NetSuite, reach out to ScaleNorth today to learn more about the process, pricing, and benefits.