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Accounting Packages

Accounting software is application software that records and processes accounting transactions within functional modules such as accounts payable, accounts receivable, payroll, and trial balance. It functions as an accounting information system. It may be developed in-house by the company or organization using it, may be purchased from a third party, or may be a combination of a third-party application software package with local modifications. It varies greatly in its complexity and cost.

The market has been undergoing considerable consolidation since the mid 1990s, with many suppliers ceasing to trade or being bought by larger groups.


Accounting software is typically composed of various modules, different sections dealing with particular areas of accounting. Among the most common are:

Core Modules

Accounts receivable—where the company enters money received

Accounts payable—where the company enters its bills and pays money it owes

General ledger—the company's "books"

Billing—where the company produces invoices to clients/customers

Stock/Inventory—where the company keeps control of its inventory

Purchase Order—where the company orders inventory

Sales Order—where the company records customer orders for the supply of inventory

Cash Book—where the company records collection and payment

Non Core Modules

Debt Collection—where the company tracks attempts to collect overdue bills (sometimes part of accounts receivable)

Electronic payment processing

Expense—where employee business-related expenses are entered

Inquiries—where the company looks up information on screen without any edits or additions

Payroll—where the company tracks salary, wages, and related taxes

Reports—where the company prints out data

Timesheet—where professionals (such as attorneys and consultants) record time worked so that it can be billed to clients

Purchase Requisition—where requests for purchase orders are made, approved and tracked