Financial Software

Custom Accounting Software App Development: Process and Costs





Financial Software


Custom Accounting Software App Development: Process and Costs

Published: 2024/02/29

5 min read

Custom accounting software app development has become vital for businesses of all sizes that want to succeed in today’s market. But what is it? What does it entail? What types of apps best suit your needs and, crucially, how much do they cost?

The saying “Money makes the world go round” is still as true today as when it was first coined. Therefore, businesses need to have the right software development for financial services in place if they want to survive.

This means it is crucially important for every business – from the newest startups to the most established enterprises – to implement a digital transformation in finance operations if they want to keep their employees, customers, and stakeholders happy.

Which is why many organizations rely on a digital transformation framework, built from many diverse types of accounting software, to keep pace with the ever-changing demands of the modern market. But before we jump into specifics, how does custom accounting software differ from generic accounting solutions?

What is custom accounting software?

A custom accounting software app meets specific business needs in various areas such as cash flow tracking, invoicing, reconciliation, and reporting etc. All while enabling you to streamline record management, prevent human error, improve response times and information recovery, and enhance cost efficiency across your organization.

Therefore, if you want to have your needs met more accurately, consider developing a custom software solution for your business. But how long does it take to develop a custom accounting software app? How much does it cost to build a custom accounting app? And what factors influence the cost of building a custom accounting app?

We know these can be daunting questions to answer which is why the rest of this blog is dedicated to answering each one individually to give you the answers you need at speed. So, with this in mind, what are your options when it comes to developing custom software apps?

Types of accounting software

There are many distinct types of custom accounting software to keep in mind when you start your development journey in this area:

  • Spreadsheets: enable simple calculations and organization of financial records. This type of software, such as Google Sheets or Microsoft Excel, is excellent for simple task management and is ideal for start-ups – but mid-sized businesses or larger enterprises need something a little more comprehensive.
  • Commercial accounting software: works well for SMEs. Quickbooks, Sage, and Xero are some of the most popular examples of commercial accounting software and they provide a wide range of accounting-based features such as generating tax reports, managing audit processes, and more.
  • Enterprise Resource Planning (ERP) software: breaks down silos between functions and oversees daily business operations on a large scale across procurement, finance, HR, customer service, and any other function where they are needed. However, it is important to note that this type of accounting software is only useful for large, global enterprises that manage complex business functions across multiple departments.
  • Custom accounting software: fits specific business needs and can be developed in-house or with the help of professionals.
  • Off-the-shelf accounting software: provides common features and is rarely customized to specific requirements.
  • Enterprise accounting software: deals with massive amounts of data storage, multi-currency transactions, advanced reporting, and so on. Oracle, SAP, and NetSuite are some of the most popular examples of enterprise accounting software.

But what does the development of a custom version of any one of these apps look like if you do not want to take the off-the-shelf route?

Accounting software development app process

There are five steps to building any successful custom accounting software app from inception to launch. These are:

  • Choosing the right software (2-4 weeks): first you need to decide what type of software you want to create, based on the various types of custom accounting software already outlined above. Each type has its own pros and cons, so choose the app that best suits your needs.
  • Research and planning (2-4 weeks): next, begin defining your target market and your app’s unique features, and the approximate cost of development needed to get it across the line. Once you have done this, planning is an integral part of achieving your accounting software goal as it helps you bridge the gap between where you are today and where you want to be. Creating a detailed project plan that outlines your software development timeline, deciding on key project milestones, and establishing your projects budget are also crucial at this stage if you want to make your app a reality.
  • Designing (2-6 weeks): once you know the type of app you need, you can move on to designing it. This involves building the user interface (UI) and user experience (UX) of the software. This stage of the development process also enables you to analyze the design of your app thoroughly and provide feedback regarding it, including recommending additions and eliminating any sections that do not work according to users.
  • Development (3-8 months): this step involves creating your app’s architecture, core features, and functionalities etc. and includes deciding whether you should host your new app on prem, in the cloud, or on the web. On prem gives you complete control and security over your data but is expensive to maintain. A web- or cloud-based approach offers more flexibility, but less control over storage and can leave you vulnerable to cyberattacks as a result.
  • Ongoing support and maintenance (TBD by management after launch): the last step in the development of your app involves maintaining proactive customer support operations to; address user concerns, release consistent updates, and ensure your software remains up-to-date and compatible with the latest trends and technologies.

Following these steps is how to develop a successful custom accounting software app.

But do not forget about some key features that customers now expect to be available in any app like this from day one. Features such as customer relationship, asset, procurement, cash flow, inventory, and HRM and payroll management. As well as financial planning and analysis, bank account, and electronic payment gateway integration.

And while not all of these features are applicable to every organization, keeping them in mind is important, as they will help ensure you – and your users – get exactly what you need out of your new app. Regardless of how big your business is, or how many departments, functions, or customers you have to deal with.

Accounting software development cost

On average, the cost of developing a custom accounting software app may vary and the development costs for any app are typically influenced by the types of software used in the development process, the experience of the team building it, the amount and quality of features being implemented into it, and how close the app’s launch is.

Custom accounting software app development – concluding thoughts

Custom accounting software is here to stay, but implementing an app like this need not be difficult, so long as steps are taken to create something that works from day one.

At Software Mind, we know that doing this can be challenging. We understand the benefits these apps can deliver, what they can do for you, and how to implement them in your company at speed. Which is why our cross-functional software team is happy to talk about what types of apps they can create for your business, whatever it is.

About the authorSoftware Mind

Software Mind provides companies with autonomous development teams who manage software life cycles from ideation to release and beyond. For over 20 years we’ve been enriching organizations with the talent they need to boost scalability, drive dynamic growth and bring disruptive ideas to life. Our top-notch engineering teams combine ownership with leading technologies, including cloud, AI, data science and embedded software to accelerate digital transformations and boost software delivery. A culture that embraces openness, craves more and acts with respect enables our bold and passionate people to create evolutive solutions that support scale-ups, unicorns and enterprise-level companies around the world. 

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