Picture this – you’re on Zoom at another Virtual Happy Hour with other finance professionals in your region, and the host asks the group, "What does everyone's accounting tech stack look like these days?" You give a blank stare and think to yourself “I’m sorry… a what stack?” and begin to google Accounting Tech Stack.
Let us be the first to say, you’re not alone if you’ve never heard of the term "Tech Stack" before. Some of us have heard the term used for departments like sales and marketing, but never for accounting. Today we’re going to talk about what an accounting tech stack is, so you won’t get caught giving your best blank stare at any online networking event.
What is an Accounting Tech Stack?According to Techopedia, a tech stack or software stack is “any set of applications that works in a specific and defined order toward a common goal.”
In the accounting world, your tech stack would be whatever software and add-on applications you use in your accounting process. For you, this includes your ERP or main accounting system, your electronic document storage system, and any automation tools you may use.
For example, if you use DocuPhase for document management and automation, you could say that your tech stack includes:
- OCR (Optical Character Recognition) for Invoice Capture
- Electronic Document Management
- Your ERP (GP, NetSuite, etc.)
- Web Forms
- AP Workflow Automation
- Payment Automation
If you don’t know what any of these terms mean, just click on the links above. You know, just in case Jamal asks follow-up questions.
Why Do You Need One?
Here’s the thing: Most accounting departments are already using technology to boost the efficiency of their processes. In order to keep up with our rapidly changing times, you’ve got to get on board with new technology.
That doesn’t mean that you’re going to lose control or your processes, or that you’re going to be phased out!
What it means is that you’ll be able to get your job done faster and more easily. You’ll have fewer stress headaches from having to chase down approvals. (To be clear, we’re not doctors, and we’re not prescribing technology to cure anyone’s chronic stress headaches.) Your records will have a clear audit trail that you can hand over to auditors if they come knocking at your door.
It’s true. We’ve seen technology transform our clients for the better, time and time again. For example, Alimera Sciences saw a 93% reduction in invoice processing time after implementing a document management and AP automation solution.
Change can be a beautiful thing when you go about it the right way.
How to Choose Your Tech Stack
Tech stacks aren’t one-size-fits-all. Just like your mama always told you, you’re special! And your tech stack needs to be catered to your specific needs.
Your tech needs are driven by your accounting needs in general.
At the base, you’ll want a document management solution that is flexible, easy-to-use, and secure. The next layer is your ERP or accounting system, and then whatever automation software fits your needs.
I know, that seems pretty vague. Don’t worry – we explain it all in our ebook The Ultimate Guide to Your Accounting Tech Stack.
Check it out for more specifics on the different types of accounting automation software that are out there. At the very least, it’ll give you something to talk about at your next Zoom networking event, right?