Completely alleviated stress while reducing my bookkeeping costs
When I first heard about Bench, I was nervous about switching from a standard, old school accounting firm I'd worked with for many years. Within a week, my fears were dissipating. Three years later, my fears are completely gone. Bench completely meets my needs as a small business owner - while saving me time and money.
Bench is SIMPLE. The software provides me an accurate and easy to understand overview of my monthly and annual financials with easy-to- process visuals and graphs. The software integrates automatically with my bank and credit card, alleviating the back and forth calls and emails I used to labor through with my former "brick and mortar" accountants. When I have a question, the Bench team is always available and quick to respond.
Nada! No complaints here! I have not experienced a single problem with the Bench software
Excellent Book Keeping Software For Running Your Business
Understanding the financial health of our business has been critical in making decisions both long and short term. Bench helped free up the minimal time that we as business owners have and spend more of that time focusing on our business, which has been very helpful.
It was great to see a breakdown of all three financial statements for our business, both from a macro and micro perspective. Being able to pull up accounts and see specific transactions from desktop and on the go through mobile was indispensable in running a healthy business and planning for the future. The messaging system was prompt and efficient for keeping in touch with our book keepers and account manager with any pressing questions. They were always very professional and did high quality work. Any questions or concerns with categorization and interpreting information were answered well.
I think it would be helpful to expand the software to allow for the dropping of all receipts into our account in order to have a one stop location for accessing and printing receipts for accounting and tax purposes. We were informed that only high ticket items needed receipts, and so we ended up using other third party software to track mileage and keep track of receipts.
Bench dropped the ball & gave me a partial refund.
I tested Bench out at the end of 2019 and then hired them for my entire 2020 books. In the beginning, they were on top of things. Then, mid-summer they dropped the ball. My account got passed to another team, and they didn't even touch my books for months. It was a mess. I reached out to customer service and they did give me 2 months of a refund, because the customer service rep (who was very kind & courteous) saw what I saw. In December, I requested for my bookkeeper to fix some miscategorized transactions and later asked, "Hey were those fixed?" She said she fixed them, which was a blatant lie!
On top of all of that, it took them about TWO MONTHS to do my final end of year books that I could pass onto my CPA. I was told they were uploaded, but then they weren't there when I looked for them. I had to request, "Please upload them again." They apologized and did so right away, but by the time I saw them, thank goodness for the COVID extension, because I literally didn't have my deliverables from Bench until April 2020. My filings would have been late.
Bench is easy to use and navigate. In the beginning, they were fantastic at answering questions I had to help understand how my bookkeeping was being handled. That's about the only good thing I have to say.
I spent more time dealing with Bench all year long than when I was doing my own bookkeeping on a simple spreadsheet. I expected a learning curve in the beginning. They promised it would get easier "as we learn about your business and transactions," but I found month after month that the same transactions got flagged needing my input. Then, when I did thorough checks on my books, I found several transactions not in the right category. The other thing I didn't like was that my bank constantly needed to be reconnected. I truly felt like I spent more time handling Bench than I would've spend just doing my own bookkeeping.
Extremely happy with my choice!
Overall, really great! They're super helpful. Most of the time they're quick to respond, but at times have needed to have an extra poke to get a response. That is a rarity. Usually, I'll hear back from someone by the next day at the latest.
Having all the data to see my business stats has been really helpful. They call it the "Pulse" which shows you the health of your business with a way to visualize how you're doing over time. I like that a lot. Bookkeeping is really easy for me now and I'm thankful I outsourced it. I just connect my accounts and drag and drop invoices and receipts that I scan or receive into the documents section and they take care of things. They also provide a nice, clean, easy to understand summary at the end of each year so my accountant can do my taxes easily. I have no regrets going with Bench. It definitely saves me a lot of time and stress.
I wish there are some nice comparable summaries like percentage growth or changes month to month, by quarter, and YoY. Prices still feel a little high to me and I wish there was an option for invoicing and receiving payments into my checking accounts.
Réponse de Bench Accounting
Thank you so much for your kind words! It's great to hear that we have been able to take away some stress. We've also shared your feedback with the appropriate parties for further consideration!
A great value of service for taking care of bookkeeping
Great experience and helpful service. Awesome value since an in-person CPA would be double the cost.
Bench was especially around tax time when it comes to working with me to get my numbers buttoned up.
The iOS app is simple and easy to use. I appreciate the quick access to messaging back and forth with my bookkeeper, making notes about transactions, and they referred me to Gusto for an integrated payroll service
Some of the features like their Pulse tab of real time bank account syncing and electronic PDF statement syncing are glitchy.
Bench is great
My accounting was solved using bench, literally it's set it and forget it, these guys are top notch and make your life easy.
Incredibly supportive staff, intuitive friendly user-interface, provided year end tax portfolio that I could easily give to my CPA. Bench is just fantastic, I can't say enough good things about the way they have handled my accounts for the past 3 years, highly recommend. If you're a professional, this is for you.
The only con here is that I didn't switch sooner.
Réponse de Bench Accounting
Thank you so much Byron for your kind words! We are so happy to be working with you.
Great product, worth the cost for peace of mind
I like that it's easy to use, comes in a user-friendly format, and simplifies accounting for me. It's dummy-proof! I'm mostly looking forward to an easier tax season with this software.
It's a little expensive for a one-person office, so I wish there were more tiers in pricing. But I like the product and will continue to use it, and understand that it costs money for a good product.
Réponse de Bench Accounting
Hi Heidi! Thanks so much for the kind words. If you ever feel that your average monthly expenses have decreased, we can always conduct a pricing review to see if you fall into another pricing tier. All the best!
Second time using bench
I wish we would have invested in this sooner!
I LOVE it so much!! I wish we would have started using this from the start with our business.
Bench has changed our business for the better! Having all of our books from month to month in one place is GAME changing! My favorite part is the real time look at the health of our business because our books are now done monthly. I can be confident that we'll never be behind! Which helps us make better business decisions!
When I was first new to Bench and terms like "balance sheet" and "profit and loss" I wished there was a hover by where you click on them at the top that gave a quick description of what each meant.
Réponse de Bench Accounting
We're thrilled to hear this, Ashley! We've passed your glowing words to your bookkeeping team, who will be equally as thrilled.
Exceptional Services for Small Businesses
Bench executives should develop the bookkeeping platform further to include items that allow the end user to have a total experience. I understand that the goal is to lead bookkeeping into full tech. However, I feel that users want some form of one-on-one service where they are able to meet and greet their bookkeeping expert. What I have experienced with Bench thus far are a series of glitches when adding accounts, not being able to delete accounts, and occasionally having to repeat myself when discussing issues with numerous customer support staff members that are not apart of my bookkeeping team. I feel that by establishing a video conferencing feature to the dashboard, it would be a brilliant opportunity for us, end users, to get to know their experts and to limit any inconsistencies while providing a more personal experience.
Bench has done a great job of placing most items one would require into a dashboard that makes the bookkeeping experience simple. Customer service at Bench is by far the best in the market! Staff at the company truly believe in the product and provide the end user with an exceptional experience each and every call.
Platform errors and the lack of additional features.
Makes My Life as a Small Business Owner So Much Easier
I started my graphic design studio in 2005 managing our books through a part-time bookkeeper who'd come in 1-2x a month and we'd then communicate a few times every week.. This system got us through the first 8 years of our business. Though functional, it was a time-consuming process. We used Quickbooks at the time, and I could never get comfortable using it to manage or understand our business's numbers even though our bookkeeper was serving it on a silver platter essentially. I've always felt Quickbooks was made for accountants, not business owners or individuals. Once can argue, it's supposed to be "accounting made easy", but it's really designed with accounting in mind — not business owners. As a business owner I wanted to quickly understand cashflow and profitability. Whereas Quickbooks seemed to that and much more, it seemed like I was doing my taxes every time I went in there. So I started looking for options and that's when I found Bench. And Bench, even back then, had already provided a service ideal for a small business owner like me. I've been using Bench since 2013 now, and I can't imagine running my business without them. It's allowed me to focus on my clients and design work which are revenue generating tasks, instead of accounting which was an anxiety-generating task.
1) Uncomplicated Interface — For a non-numbers/non-accounting comfortable individual it's great. It provides me access and understanding to our accounting in a very digestible yet informative manner.
2) Accessible Customer Service/Communications — All the interactions I've had have been professional, courteous, and problem solving driven. It's never "No". Instead if a challenge arises, they've always been proactive in finding a way to address the challenge or question providing options. It's also especially great that you can speak with them or chat with them with no barriers. At first I was very concerned about this since our books are the heartbeat of our financials, and i was quickly at ease after the first few calls and chats.
3) Easy — Once our accounts were synced and Bench had a clear picture of how our business worked, it's set-it-and-forget-it. What used to required a few hours every week for me now has become an hour or two a month.
4) Transaction Verification Made Easy — I especially love how they've simplified this process to almost a game.
1) Cash based bookkeeping. This was a struggle in the beginning since we were accrual based initially. However upon working with them and our CPA, we've managed to stay accrual based and set up a system where we do adjusted entries after filing taxes.
2) Not Quickbooks. This is not really a con, but should make it clear that if you prefer to stay on Quickbooks, this is not the service for you. They will provide your books as spreadsheets for your CPA to work with. At first I was nervous about this, but it hasn't been an issue.
3) Turnover with bookkeepers — Over the years, we've had I believe 5 different bookkeepers over the course of 6 years due to turnover or what seems to be internal promotions. It has not negatively impacted our service, but I do wish it was less frequent since at times I'd have to remind the new person some of the subtleties of our account.
Outsourcing to Bench was a Gamechanger
As a small business we're constantly prioritizing big time spends and deciding what's worth us outsourcing and spending money on rather than time. Bench was one that, as soon as we were set up and going with them, we've never looked back. It is not cheap. But it's worth it for us, no question about it!
We've been using Bench for a few years now and absolutely love it. It can be basically as hand's off as you want. We get an email once a month when they're working on our books, sometimes an extra contact here and there if they provide other documentation throughout the year. And we have our CPA and Bench people in touch with each other which is even more off our plate. As small business owners, bookkeeping used to take a ton of our time, and now it's a breeze. And logging into our account we can look around at where our money is going with a quick glance
I admit we haven't done a ton of digging around in the actual software - our typical use is them contacting us with any categorization questions once a month (and after a couple years there are hardly ever any). I do wish (or can not find how) we could see how much money we're paying/spending on a particular item. So, say, I want to see how much we're spending on just Facebook ads. What I can do is search for "facebook" (and I can specifically search within whatever time period I want, like Q4 2018 or January 2017), but it won't automatically give me a sum of all of those expenses. I CAN see a summary of expenses by category, but by "line item" (like "Facebook" or "AWS") would be even more helpful.
Overall, I recommend bench to everyone. They do have their shortcomings, but in my experience it can be fixed by not giving so many clients to one person. My current bookkeeper is great and very prompt on delivering my books each month. I hope she sticks around. YMMV, but keep with it, bench is the best out there.
My QuickBooks was a mess. I had brought in duplicate transactions from syncing with square and I was going to need to manually adjust thousands of items. Then I found bench! The bookkeepers are relatively easy to get in touch with when you have an issue; you can book a call, chat, etc. Come tax time the year end summary they put together was amazing. It made filing taxes very easy.
The bookkeepers are spread very thin, and turnover is high. I've been with them a little over a year and I've had 3 different bookkeepers. I had to complain about one of them because he wasn't giving me a complete set of books each month. (They ended up giving a month free while they caught up my books.) It costs much much more than QuickBooks and doing it yourself, and you do have someone knowledgeable doing the work, but all than means nothing if your books are fragmented.
Ease of Use and Best Investment Ever
My overall experience is great. this is my second time using them. I had to leave the first time while switching my business format but it’s worth the investment knowing that my books are in order in I can easily track my growth and readjust expenses.
The best thing about the software is hands off. In comparison to other software you have to not only implement the software you have to hire someone to upkeep it/reconcile it every month, whereas this is all in one pricing.
The software may be a little confusing at first but with the customer service they help you navigate how to use the key features. I do wish there was a easier way to download a simple profit and loss and there are some other things that they may not be able to do that you need a CPA for but you at least have all your information in order for the CPA.
Best Web-based/Remote Bookkeeping Full-Services
Great experience, we've been with them for 2 years now and we will not switch to anything else!
Extremely professional bookkeepers, easy to use user interface and 100% hands-free. They even have auto-linked bank accounts to pull your bank statements so you don't have to manually send receipts and statements. You can view your dashboard anytime and see live updates on your balance sheet. My CPA loves their books as well.
Sometimes the connection might be off and I'll have to upload documents anyways, and they'll still need my input for returning vendors/suppliers.
Excellent Solution for Tracking Business Expenses
Bench has set my mind at ease that all of my business costs and expenditures are being accounted for successfully and tracked.
Very easy to use . This product has been very useful for me to track all business expenses and have all of the required audits of my accounts while also producing annual earnings reports. Very professional.
It would be nice if the system was able to read the memos for checks written to determine the purpose for the expenditure rather than the business owner having to review each check and identify its purpose for the business.
convenient and accessible
With bench.co I've been able to see in real-time our financial statements without having to ruffle through paperwork or calling someone/visiting an office. I would highly recommend this service to any small business owner.
Bench.co has literally changed the way I operate my organization & school. Whereas in the past we'd have to wait, and work around local accountants who had 100's of clients in queue, Bench allows me the convenience and access to my virtual accountant 24/7 online and poignantly clear on all aspects of bookkeeping.
As with all software based services, sometimes Bench can lag in their monthly accounts at the beginning of the new year. This is a very minor inconvenience to the overall experience.
Great bookkeeping company
Overall Bench has saved me time with preparing all bank reconciliations and year end tax preparation. It's also a stress relief that it's done thoroughly and properly. It's not just one person being accountable for my bookkeeping needs but the company stands behind it.
I like the ease of having my bookkeeping done on a timely basis and not having to think about it until I get a message to review the month. I can then easily go in and make notes of any changes to be made or answer their questions to me. The customer service is excellent as well. They integrate with my payroll company too which saves time.
They don't integrate with my Customer Management System and they don't use QuickBooks which I also use. I process invoices through my CMS which also provides my scheduling, customer profiles, employee payroll reports, etc. I would love it if Bench would integrate their system to it so I can better track invoices. Instead I have to do that through QuickBooks but am only using a small portion of what QB offers since Bench does my bank reconciliation and they don't use QB. So I'm still paying for QB for this part of what I need. I have a daily service company and I process client credit cards daily in addition to tracking some clients that still write checks and a few who pay via ACH. I do that within QB. At this point I'm not aware of a better way if I want to continue using Bench for bookkeeping.
Best Bookkeeper there is!
Bench always delivers above and beyond and i love their service.
Bench is an amazing product that is in the cloud. I love that i can access my books from anywhere on the go and get a snapshot of how the company is doing week to week.
There are no cons at this point. I wish they started an accounting arm that tied to bench since their product is so awesome!
Takes the hassle work out of financial reporting
Overall Bench has helped me to track and monitor my business financials. Tax seasons has been a breeze the last two years with Bench - something a lot of freelancers struggle with.
- no need to use quickbooks
- friendly and responsive staff when issues arise
- individual bookkeeper assigned to your account
- user interface is friendly and accessible
- reporting features are solid
- costs less than hiring your own bookkeeper
- affordable rates which are advantageous for small businesses
- auto syncing does not connect w Capital One bak accounts which results oftentimes a 2-3 week lag in getting monthly reports back
- only retrospective reporting; no prospective budgeting features (need to use separate software)
- does not provide tax accounting services; only bookkeeping
- cannot easily customize revenue subledgers without discussing w accountant
- no categories of fixed/variable expenses
- cannot upload documents via mobile devices
Ditched Quickbooks and saved a lot of time
I am spending a lot less time on bookkeeping and accounting.
Very easy implementation - love the human support on closing the books each month.
Not all of my business accounts can be connected via feed (ie intuit payroll), which requires a drag and drop upload each month.
My experience has been overall positive! My bookkeeper is there when I need him and always professional and friendly!
Simply put, Bench took a headache away and made managing my bookkeeping easy and seamless. It also encourages me to be more aware of receivables and expenses + I really appreciate that I can check my books at any time, day or night. The overall look of the site is clean and approachable, and the interface is simple.
A few times my bank accounts have come "unlinked" somehow and I've had to go back in and link them.
Réponse de Bench Accounting
Hi Christina! Thanks for taking the time to share your experience with us! We've passed this along to your bookkeeping team, and I know they will be thrilled to hear this!
AMT Bench Review
Bench allows us to accurately forecast our cashflow with ease.
Right from the beginning Bench made everything extremely easy. My bookeeping is now completely hands-off. Our bookkeeper is always very easy to reach if we have questions and learned our business practices extremely fast.
I wish I could combined the income statement and other reports to stretch over different years. For instance, if we could view December 2020 and January 2021 in one report instead of having to do the math that would be fantastic.
Awesome tool, great customer service, and affordable!
What I love the most is the customer service. Despite this being a "bookkeeping software/tool", you get a dedicated accountant. Executives are so responsive. Every time I have a question, I get a response that same day. The platform is also easy to use, and the interface makes it really easy to upload documents, download reports, etc. Really recommend!
One small issue is the capabilities. If you have highly complex bookkeeping needs (a unique situation or business model), this may not work for you. This doesn't matter for 99% of businesses.
Réponse de Bench
Hi Patrick - This is so lovely to hear! We're so glad we've been able to help take bookkeeping off of your plate. I've passed this on to Michael and your team, and you've made their day. - SP
It's like having a personal bookkeeper at a much lower cost.
We save a considerable amount of money over brick-and-mortar services and save a huge amount of time by not trying to do this ourselves with Quick Books or similar software.
Value. They provide services like a personal bookkeeping company. Very helpful and quick response.
Nothing comes to mind. We've been very happy with it.