Discuss abouat the Evaluation Of Different Software Packages.
This particular study intends to conduct literature review on organization that is using an accounting software package. Current study on accounting software is presented in the form of report that incorporates the discussion of evaluation of different software packages in terms of its benefits and costs. Organizations’ operating in Australia relies on using accounting software packages whether they are enterprise operating in large or small scale. Usage of accounting software and control problems faced in light of using the software is evaluated by choosing one of the listed organizations on Australian stock exchange. In present study, Amcor Limited has been selected that is a multinational packaging company operating in Australia and more than 40 countries. They are involved in producing and developing rigid and flexible plastic packaging with around 95% of sales made to healthcare, defensive food, beverage, tobacco packaging and markets. The packaging products of company are produced by converting raw materials such as aluminum foils, polymers and fibers. There are two reporting segments of business that is rigid plastics and flexible packaging. The computer software of Amcor limited is either acquired externally or it is developed internally (Amcor.com, 2018). The discussion also demonstrates the operational issues faced by company and development of accounting software packages in the country.
Current structure of organization:
In the industry, Amcor is a global leader having a reportable segments and operational structures. The group is structured into five business divisions and other investments.
The segment of Amcor rigid plastics deals with manufacturing of rigid plastic containers for a broad range of predominantly food and beverage products. Such products involve water, juices, carbonated soft drinks, milk based beverages, sport drinks, juices, personal care items, spreads, dressing, sauces and plastic caps for wide range of applications. Segment of Amcor flexible is the aggregation of four operating segments and each segment manufacturing film and flexible packaging materials for respective industries. All such operating segments have common characteristics as they are engaged in packaging and printing of fast moving consumer products. Moreover, the investment group of organization deals with the corporate functions of group and hold the equity of the group that is accounted for investment. The disclosure of segmentation is consistent with the information that is reviewed by chief operating decision maker of Amcor (Amcor.com, 2018).
Operational issues faced by organization due to its structure:
Amcor limited is a global packaging company that is involved in production of variety of packaging. With the growth of company by way of acquisition, it faced challenge in maintaining cost, support, interface and harmonization of process and reporting.
Amcor limited intends to produce packaging that is appealing, functional and cost effective along with serving environment in a sustainable way. Volume of packaging requires using the right amount of appropriate materials. Sometimes, it becomes difficult to determine the right amount of packaging materials. The operations of business of Amcor limited are threatened and have made it increasingly difficult to conduct to compete with business. Business environment in which Amcor limited operates is toughest and has become more challenging in the world. Furthermore, the consumer goods company faces increasing and new challenges that drives complexity into the business. Some of the issues they face in associated with the partners of the packaging company that would support a profitable and continued growth. Organization requires localization aspects and multi language capability for dealing with the problems of case community (Popovi? et al., 2015).
Method of system acquisition:
For the risk and treasury management, Amcor limited has selected accounting software that would help organization with multiple services. Amcor has chosen a software named Reval that is a leading global provider of integrated and scalable risk and treasury management solutions. Reval is software as a service provider that comes with wide variety of functions such as hedging workflows of accounting related across four regional treasury centers and integration of global cash and risk management.
The prior multiple treasury system used by Amcor has been replaced by a single Saas platform that is Reval and thereby enabling organization with a better transparency and control system. Dashboards and reporting analytics features of Reval would help in driving real value to the business of Amcor limited. They assist enterprises by providing better management of cash flows financial and liquidity risks, reporting and accounting on complex hedging activities and financial instruments. Now, a day all such software’s are moving beyond delivering of data and providing intelligence for decision making purpose. Amcor focuses on continuous innovation for finding better and new ways of supplying beverage, food, healthcare, personal and home care and tobacco end markets.
System flowchart of sales procedures of Amcor limited:
Identification and controlling of problems in the system:
The procedures of accounting system are faced with issue that is concerned to authorization who are responsible for preparing report and making entry in different accounts. Employees and staffs of company who are responsible for maintain the books of account balances and deal with the entire process finalization might be involved in conducting data manipulation and fraud acts. Accounting department can understate or overstate the financial and accounting figures if the organization does not have proper method for monitoring the costs and expenses related to procedures of sales. Therefore, after viewing the accounting procedures involved in the sales system of Amcor limited, it can be said that there are no proper software packages that are currently used by company for dealing with the sale system. However, they have employed the suitable accounting software when dealing with the financial risk management.
Adoption and development of software packages in Australia:
In the packaging industry, the role of packaging optimization software is playing an increasingly important role due to increasing complexities of logistic chain. The growth drivers of accounting software packages implementation in the packaging industry are attributable to growing portfolio of technology. Amcor limited relies on control system and information technology for supporting the business.
Over the years, market of accounting software’s has undertaken a major change resulting from advancement in technology. There is increasing competition in the market of software with the major players in the market being Intuit, XERO and MYOB. More than 70% of business enterprises in Australia are using the system of business information and cloud computing software. Business faces some difficulties while implementing the accounting software as they are required to take into account several pre requisites such as costs (Arvidsson et al., 2014). This is so because costing is an important factor while implementing the software and it should be evaluated by business.
There is a huge variations in the accounting software packaged depending upon their complexities and cost associated with it. This increased pace of adoption of accounting software packages are attributable to the factors such as cost, error of omissions and time required. In addition to this, some other factors that have resulted in increasing adoption of the software are increased effectiveness and efficiency in the accounting system.
Current market size of software:
The total value of market size of packaging services in Australia stood at $ AUD 10 to 10.5 billion. Major manufacturers of packaging products in Australia are Australian owned as a substantial proportion of small and medium enterprises. Amcor limited is one of the leading players in the production of flexible packaging products market. The total worth of assets that is held by Amcor limited stood at $ USD 9083.3 million. Some of the competitors of Amcor limited are Bemis, Rexam, Winpac, RPC group and Aptar group.
Over the past five years, Australian software industry has grown phenomenally and have encouraged of software to capitalize on the operating system and cloud computing platforms. The major players in the cloud computing market of software’s are MYOB, Saas and XERO. A market share of 65% is enjoyed by XERO with MYOB enjoying less that 60% of market shares in the current scenario.
Leadership in software market and their competitive advantage:
There is increasing implementation of software that helps in optimization of packaging as a result of development in logistics technology assisting in increasing total pack efficiency. Amcor limited intends to set itself apart from the competitors by continuing the use of measures of its global expertise and its reach. The company operates in the market that is highly competitive having varying degrees of industry structures, barriers to entry, motivational and competitor’s pattern. Financial performance of company can be adversely impacted by the action of the potential or established competitors.
There is no particular company that is dominating the market of packaging industry; however, Amcor limited is one of the significant players in the market. Organization employs some of the accounting software that helps in gaining competitive advantage by few degrees.
The new entrants in the market are providing tough competition to the major players of software accounting packages in Australia. Online solutions are actively promoted by the country by some software such as Sage and Intuit. Due to threats faced by new entrants in the market and strong market position and brand recognition of XERO, it is required by software such as MYOB to increase their share of market by increasing their growth. However, MYOB has accelerated development of cloud based products due to increasing inclination of customers towards seeking online solutions. There are many accounting features provided by this particular software such as features incorporating payroll needs and thereby competing with emerging software products.
The most popular accounting software that is used by business enterprise in Australia is XERO that has a customer base of 540000. XERO has contributed to the development of software industry by carrying out innovation that incorporates trend of advisory and compliance (Wan & Clegg, 2016). However, one of the biggest drawbacks as viewed by business enterprise is the higher cost of implementation and purchasing price of the software.
Both the software’s that is MYOB and XERO is placing tougher competition for software such as Intuit. Intuit has the plan of launching the products that would offer loan service to small scale enterprise of Australia. Therefore, it can be inferred from the analysis of different accounting software packages that the software products comes with wide variety of features that helps organization by providing efficiency in carrying out their operational tasks. Hence, it can be concluded that the software market of Australia is dominated by some of the leading software such as MYOB, XERO, Saas and Intuit. Furthermore, it can also be said that the degree of competition in the accounting software market of Australia faces inflexible competition due to various similar features provided by leading software operating in the country (Sedera et al, 2016).
One of the clouds accounting software that is prevalent in Australia is Saas which is currently used by Amcor limited and has an estimated customer base of 20000 businesses. This particular software is regarded as the only online software company operating in the country that is profitable. However, Saas could not succeed in increasing the share of their sells despite the fact that such software is imbibed with so many features. Moreover, compared to software such as XERO, customers such as accountants and bookkeepers do not find Saas attractive. Compared to the rival of Saas, their priorities are considerably different and while one of the retail friendly characteristics being highly capable module of inventory. On other hand, the competitor of Saas that is XERO was not successful in realizing the module of inventories until the year 2014 (Tarhini et al., 2015).
Challenges or gaps encountered by accounting software packages customers:
Using accounting software by business enterprise operating in Australia such as Amcor limited are faced with several drawbacks are listed below:
Customization and scalability- Accounting is a matter that is not its own and little efforts are taken by developers for enabling the process of digitization that is more engaging than the usual (Rouhani & Lecic, 2018). Therefore, the system might not be open to configuration and cannot be thrilling to be suitable to the accounting needs of business.
Lacking integration- Some of the accounting software might not have an open infrastructure for supporting the integrations of third parties. It is required by organization to take into considerations all such pre requites so that the software system is properly integrated into the working process.
The trend of designing accounting system software that is industry specific- Business enterprises are required to meet the particular needs of industry if they are required to make the selection between standardized and general accounting solutions (Arnold et al., 2015).
Issues associated with costs- Organizations are required to have minimum system of standard, random access memory, hard drive memory and for the implementation of the accounting software packages. Requirement of back up data and technical support that are sought by the implementation of such software’s requires organization to incur some additional costs. Number of user’s forms the basis of subscription of software by the addition of some add on features. This would lead to increasing of the implementation costs and this is often viewed as challenge for small and medium enterprises (Dwivedi et al., 2014).
Factors related to timing of using software- It has been ascertained that some of the sophisticated software consumes less time when performing certain functions compared to some other depending upon the requirement of business. The time taken by excel sheet and ledger is less than the time taken by the accounting software in performing functions such as expenses sheets and creation of invoices (Antero, 2015). In the initial phase, the implementation of the accounting software can result in temporary shutdown of the operations of business.
Problem in using of the software- The new accounting systems of software are not based on the conventional method and main problems that is related to the implementation of such software is their designing system. Using such software is faced by difficulties as employees of different enterprises are accustomed to work on system of software’s that are conventional (Jones et al., 2014).
Recommendations and Conclusion:
In this particular study, various accounting software packages of Australia have been discussed along with explaining the market size and the competitive advantage enjoyed by the leader in the software market. The usage of accounting software has increased by small scale and medium scale enterprises. Implementation of accounting software by the business enterprise offers organization with several advantages such as banking transactions, integrated pay roll, inventory management and invoicing. Organizations are required to perform analysis in depth so that they are able to identify the costs and benefits associated with implementation of software. However, in order for organizations to receive benefits offered by the software implementation, some of the measures that should be taken by business involve necessary sessions of training and arranging for some antivirus software. Therefore, it is recommended to Amcor limited that to employ such package of accounting software that would assist in resolving the existing issues of their business system. From the analysis, it can be concluded that Amcor can seek the employment of software such as MYOB as it comes with the additional features such as solving of grievances of customer and existing online problems.
Amcor.com. (2018). Amcor - Investor Relations - financial information and ASX announcements . [online] Available at: https://www.amcor.com/investor-relations/annual-report-archive [Accessed 6 May 2018].
Antero, M. C. (2015). A Multi-case Analysis of the Development of Enterprise Resource Planning Systems (ERP) Business Practices. Morten Friis-Olivarius The Associative Nature of Creativity.
Archer-Brown, C., & Kietzmann, J. (2018). Strategic knowledge management and enterprise social media. Journal of Knowledge Management.
Arnold, V., Benford, T., & Sutton, S. G. (2015). Leveraging integrated information systems to enhance strategic flexibility and performance: The enabling role of enterprise risk management. International Journal of Accounting Information Systems, 19, 1-16.
Arvidsson, V., Holmström, J., & Lyytinen, K. (2014). Information systems use as strategy practice: A multi-dimensional view of strategic information system implementation and use. The Journal of Strategic Information Systems, 23(1), 45-61.
Cassidy, A. (2016). A practical guide to information systems strategic planning. CRC press.
Dwivedi, Y. K., Wastell, D., Laumer, S., Henriksen, H. Z., Myers, M. D., Bunker, D., ... & Srivastava, S. C. (2015). Research on information systems failures and successes: Status update and future directions. Information Systems Frontiers, 17(1), 143-157.
Jones, P., Simmons, G., Packham, G., Beynon-Davies, P., & Pickernell, D. (2014). An exploration of the attitudes and strategic responses of sole-proprietor micro-enterprises in adopting information and communication technology. International Small Business Journal, 32(3), 285-306.
Kasemsap, K. (2015). The role of information system within enterprise architecture and their impact on business performance. Technology, innovation, and enterprise transformation, 262-284.
Marabelli, M., & Galliers, R. D. (2017). A reflection on information systems strategizing: the role of power and everyday practices. Information Systems Journal, 27(3), 347-366.
Mostaghel, R., Oghazi, P., Beheshti, H. M., & Hultman, M. (2015). Strategic use of enterprise systems among service firms: Antecedents and consequences. Journal of Business Research, 68(7), 1544-1549.
Mu, E., Kirsch, L. J., & Butler, B. S. (2015). The assimilation of enterprise information system: An interpretation systems perspective. Information & Management, 52(3), 359-370.
Nguyen, T. H., Newby, M., & Macaulay, M. J. (2015). Information technology adoption in small business: Confirmation of a proposed framework. Journal of Small Business Management, 53(1), 207-227.
Ogiela, L. (2015). Advanced techniques for knowledge management and access to strategic information. International Journal of Information Management, 35(2), 154-159.
Popovi?, A., Hackney, R., Coelho, P. S., & Jakli?, J. (2014). How information-sharing values influence the use of information systems: An investigation in the business intelligence systems context. The Journal of Strategic Information Systems, 23(4), 270-283.
Romero, D., & Vernadat, F. (2016). Enterprise information systems state of the art: Past, present and future trends. Computers in Industry, 79, 3-13.
Rouhani, S., & Lecic, D. M. (2018). Business Intelligence Impacts on Design of Enterprise Systems. In Encyclopedia of Information Science and Technology, Fourth Edition (pp. 2932-2942). IGI Global.
Sedera, D., Lokuge, S., Grover, V., Sarker, S., & Sarker, S. (2016). Innovating with enterprise systems and digital platforms: A contingent resource-based theory view. Information & Management, 53(3), 366-379.
Tarhini, A., Ammar, H., & Tarhini, T. (2015). Analysis of the critical success factors for enterprise resource planning implementation from stakeholders’ perspective: A systematic review. International Business Research, 8(4), 25.
Wan, Y., & Clegg, B. (2016). Designing and Managing ERP Systems for Virtual Enterprise Strategy: A Conceptual Framework for Innovative Strategic Thinking. In Strategic Management and Leadership for Systems Development in Virtual Spaces (pp. 160-195). IGI Global.