Small-Business Software

The Big 4

The most common software applications loaded onto entrepreneurs' computers are accounting, database management, spreadsheet and word processing programs.

Accounting programs, in a nutshell, take care of a business's bookkeeping, payroll, purchasing, inventory and check-writing tasks.

Database programs help to keep track of current and prospective customers, generate invoices, prepare expense reports, create mailing labels, maintain personnel records, and store a variety of information for easy reference.

Spreadsheet programs enable effective financial planning, expense tracking, forecasting and budgeting. They allow for advanced organization and computation of numerical and statistical information as well as ready preparation of charts and graphs.

Word processing programs ensure the creation of professional-looking documents in all shapes and sizes. Many now come with full Internet connectivity and contain state-of-the-art spelling checkers, grammar checkers and thesauri.

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