For a food company in the early stages of business, QuickBooks accounting software can be a great investment. With QuickBooks, you gain access to industry standard accounting tools, helping you keep up with your manufacturing, labor and facility costs, manage vendor invoices, accurately bill customers and forecast for growth strategy.

However, as you grow, a light-weight solution like QuickBooks is going to start falling behind and becoming less reliable. Below, we’ve compiled the top five pain points common among growing food companies that utilize QuickBooks or similar types of light-weight accounting software. If you are concerned that your company has outgrown QuickBooks, it is probably because you are suffering from one or more of the following symptoms.

Anxiety over patchy audit trails

Financial auditing is both an important and stressful process. When your company is small, basic accounting software is able to handle all your data. However, as you grow, there are more opportunities for information to slip through the cracks, especially as inputs become more complicated, new ingredients and product lines are introduced and there are no workflows or alerts in place within your software. If you can foresee an auditor asking you about items, transactions or changes on your books, and you’re not confident you could answer them all, you know that a new solution is needed.

Doubts about data accuracy

Being able to provide accurate and timely financial data is key to your leadership team being able to make informed and confident business decisions. Companies need to think strategically as they are growing and financial data allows them to see what the best course to success is. The reporting that comes out of QuickBooks is only as good as the data that goes in. Without proper workflows and reminders that ensure data is captured accurately, the reports you generate could end up leading to ill informed decisions that can hinder your company’s growth.  Stale data and data entry errors can become bigger problems as your company grows and it is in your best interest to invest in software that keeps data accurate and fresh.

Frustration with reports that don’t provide insight

As the amount of data at your disposal continues to grow, you have an opportunity to drill down into your performance with reports. Unfortunately, with more basic systems, you’re not able to manage the data to its full potential. You will likely have to end up exporting a lot of the information to Excel, which works well for historical reporting but does not provide any of the real time insight you need to make informed business decisions. When it comes to planning and forecasting for the future, your data may not be as helpful as it should be.

Confusion over the best way to manage multiple entities

For many food companies, growth relies on the diversification of product lines and expanding operations to multiple entities. Unfortunately, QuickBooks isn’t built to keep track of different entities from one account, so you might have to log out and back in again to change entities or invent other workarounds. Conducting transactions that involve multiple entities and maintaining consolidated financials can become an ordeal and take its toll on the financial team.

Impatience with how long basic accounting tasks and financial closes take

Finally, probably the most frustrating issue can be the slowdown that inevitably happens when you’ve outgrown a system. Spending too much time on the basics leaves you unavailable for more important things. If it feels like you spend all your time balancing your books, it’s time to consider investing in a new system.

Where to next?

If you’ve experienced some of these pain points and know that it is now time to make the switch from your current solution to something a little more robust, you are probably asking yourself “where do I look to next?” We’d  suggest checking out our new CFO’s toolkit for replacing accounting software. In the toolkit, we list the features you need from your next solution to integrate better with the best of your organization, what tools can help improve accounting practices and how you can leverage your financial data to grow your business and increase profits.


Ready for a specialized food ERP? Learn more about Aptean Food & Beverage ERP JustFood Edition — a solution purpose-built to solve your challenges and propel your food business and digital transformation to the next level.