WorkingPoint is online business management software for small businesses. It is an ambitious and comprehensive offering that includes bookkeeping, invoicing, contact management, inventory management, a public marketing profile, and more.
As a web-based software solution, you don’t load any software on your machine; it is all on the Internet.
The main advantage of many of today’s software-as-a-service applications is they’re ready to use right now. Most of them require very little customization and often have templates specific for your business. In fact, even the registration form is simpler and faster to complete than standard software.
WorkingPoint is no exception: They only require a company name, username, password, and your email to get started. Oh, they also ask, “how did you hear about us?”
Once you register, you are instantly taken to a dashboard, a control panel of everything you can do in this invoicing and online bookkeeping solution. The dashboard elegantly packs in a lot of information. Rather than try to cram more in, it provides an intuitive text link, such as: See All Invoices in the Who’s Overdue box. What I really like about the dashboard is it has a customizable interface. I can drag and drop any of the items into another area as it suits me.
This image below is the original dashboard. All of the main components are across the top nav bar in blue. The last one which I cut off is Profile (it is not an essential item to getting your bookkeeping done, but useful for social networking and traffic building — more on this later).
In less than 10 seconds, I configured a new dashboard arrangement. All the boxes on the page are movable. You grab the top of the box and drag and drop it to where you want it. Notice how the boxes are different in the following image. I’ve circled in red the three changes I made. Banking Summary is now in the upper right. Who’s Overdue and Who Do I Owe are now front and center, which apply to my day as I think about my cash flow.
Working Point not only has bookkeeping, but also has a Contact Management section. This is especially useful for managing customer contacts. You can indicate who the individual contacts are at your customers’ company; add notes about conversations or meetings you’ve held with them; and other important information so that you don’t have to rely on memory or a separate contact management application to share information with others on the team. But it’s not limited to customers… you can add any contacts you want.
Migrating to a new software package usually has a learning curve and data transition period (sometimes you’re stuck manually entering data). Not so in WorkingPoint. The usual long slog of putting in contacts and client information for invoicing is well thought out here. They created an Import Contacts tool. You can upload a vCard or csv file with ease. Contacts could also be called Customers, in case you’re wondering.
I didn’t get stuck in my testing of WorkingPoint, but that was partly because they have little help tips in each screen (which you can turn on or off). The help tips contain links to more detailed, easy-to-read explanations in the online help center.
WorkingPoint offers double entry bookkeeping. The accounts section is the category where you put expenses and income items. It had most of what you would need for a new company already preloaded, but you could customize them or add new ones fairly easily. This is just a subset of the 40 available by default.
For those who bill through Paypal, WorkingPoint has a great breakdown on its blog about how to handle PayPal transactions so that the income gets separated from the Paypal fees. In fact, their blog has a number of down-to-earth, tactical ideas for managing your business.
You can manage and track expenses, cash and receivables from the system on your dashboard in the form of helpful charts and tables. The system also handles financial management.
The system also offers a module to manage your inventory, so that you know what you have on hand, when to order, and so on.
I mentioned the Profile tab, above. This is a really smart move that I haven’t seen many online accounting packages offer. Your accounting and contact information and other confidential information is, of course, kept private. But they offer a separate public profile page that let me link out to my Twitter prage, my blog, even a Yelp profile. And if you do not have a website for your business, you can use your Public Profile page as a quick substitute until you can get a website up and running, or simply to create another page on the Web giving visibility to your business. So, these guys get that there’s value in building a network within their new service.
I only had one challenge with the service and that was, after several tests, it just seemed to run a bit slow. It could have been my broadband connection acting up, but it did it in various time periods. Not a dealbreaker, by any means. I need to go slower when I do my bookkeeping and billing work, anyway One other small point was I couldn’t go back to the company home page without logging out. Both of these are very small points, to be sure.
Who WorkingPoint is Best For
If I were just starting a new business, I would think very seriously about this solution. It has almost all of what you need to manage your company’s finances in an easy-to-use interface, plus the added benefits of contact management and a marketing profile that you normally don’t find in free accounting or bookkeeping packages. The first user is free, forever, which makes it hard to pass up and, at least, try it out. Additional users can be added for a modest monthly fee starting at $10 a month.
The company’s website mentions specifically that it’s right for “freelancers, consultants and service providers of all types.” For U.S. businesses only.
Learn more about WorkingPoint.