MYOB vs Netsuite vs Saasu – A comparison
Updated on May 16th, 2015
In case you are looking to compare accounting products and experiences, I thought I’d share ours. Over the lifetime of Bluewire Media, we’ve used 3 different accounting systems: MYOB, Netsuite and now Saasu.
We are a relatively simple service business – ie there is no inventory management required etc. This is a brief history of which system we used, what the deciding factors were for using it, and the verdict.
A brief history:
2005, System 1 = MYOB
Just starting the business, we ran with the recommendation of our accountant at the time.
Good starting point but I found it difficult and inflexible to use.
2008, System 2 = Netsuite
Came highly recommended from trusted sources. Thought we were setting ourselves up with a system that we’d never have to change – it seemed to have scale, flexibility, detailed reporting, everything you could ask for. A huge plus was that it was web-based. It integrated CRM with Accounting which was really appealing.
Implementation was complex and expensive, the support was poor and the system was massively over complicated for our purposes. Too expensive for the additional payroll module so ended up having to run MYOB for our payroll. Not a good result
Despite that, we persisted for 2 years hoping that it would get better with more data in it, but ultimately the useability and a host of other minor headaches that turned into a major migraine.
2010, System 3 = Back to MYOB
In our desperation to get off Netsuite, we moved back to MYOB which saved us thousands in licencing fees. Unfortunately it still the same old clunky software but this time it had to be run through a VPN on our bookkeeper’s server because our new CFO, our accountant and I were all in Sydney.
Same as before and it really felt like taking a backward step not being web based.
2011, System 4 = Saasu
Aside from standard accounting functions, I had a list of things that I wanted the system to do (below). But there were 2 other factors that really appealed to me.
Firstly, we’re huge fans of 37 Signals‘ products and business philosophies. Lesley, one of our lead developers, had heard about Saasu through 37 Signals as an accounting package that integrated with Highrise. That was instant credibility in my eyes. Secondly and very importantly, Saasu were heavily involved in social media – they had responded quickly to my tweeted questions at the end of last year.
So my criteria, over basic accounting function, were:
- Web based
- Multiple users
- Fully integrated payroll
- Significantly customisable invoice/statement forms
- Integrate with Highrise (CRM – customer relationship mangement) and Basecamp (project management) by 37signals
- Mobile phone access
Blown away. I didn’t realise you an accounting system could make you happy! We’re now 3 months into our Saasu subscription and the improvement from the old systems is incredible. It’s so easy to use, the support is great and all the features are running really well.
[Side note: MYOB Live Accounts failed on integration, payroll and lack of social media responsiveness. Xero did well on the social media and integration but failed on my payroll criteria (at the time).]
[Post script 2015: MYOB has completely got up to speed on these issues and now many accountants are MYOB consultants and big advocates of the system.]
In my next post I’ll go into more detail on our Saasu experience to date but please contact me if you’d like to discuss any of the above.
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