Updated: Jul 18, 2019
A look at Totals 3, an accounting software that I have been using on a daily basis for almost a year.
From Excel to Totals
When I started my career as a freelance translator I used Excel to create my invoices. It surely gets the job done, but it’s accounting at its simplest form. When it was time to submit a quarterly declaration it was time consuming. Especially when I had to go through all the cells to check which invoices I already declared and when, or if they were past due. Also, my client list was on another Excel sheet.
Then, one day, I decided to look for a software to help me save time and get better organized. I only knew that I was not looking for one based on cloud computing. I do not remember the name of all the software I tried, but there were at least three of them, including Totals. What discouraged me from using Totals was its price. Among those software, Totals happened to be the most expensive one: $129.00 + Tax. A lot, right? Well, it’s an investment. It’s like buying a CAT Tool. Soon enough in life I realized that quality has a price ‒ “if you pay peanuts, you get monkey”, isn’t it? Here I am now, almost a year later, writing a blog about Totals to say that I am very satisfied with the purchase… and it looks like I am doing some good advertisement here (they didn’t pay me, not yet *smiley face*).
Not so easy to use at first
Before purchasing it you can download the free trial. I do not remember how limited the free trial version is, but I believe it’s in terms of invoices issued. The free trial definitely lets you navigate the whole software and try everything out. I actually was not very convinced by Totals at first. I found it somehow confusing. There are so many things you can do that at first it feels like there are too many. I remember that I even gave up at some point, but the lack of other options for Mac users convinced me to give it a second chance. I actually told myself that I would have purchased it only if I could reproduce the very same invoice layout I was using on Excel. You guess right. I managed to do it. I also think that my invoices look even better now. With Totals, invoices are highly customizable, which is a very important feature for us translators who need to be ready to issue invoices in different languages. Mine are ready in English, French, and Italian.
I was very concerned about my data. Using Excel is easy to create a backup of the file, but what do you do when you use an accounting software? Where was the data going to be? Was I able to move from one computer to another without loosing my accounting records? These were my major questions. And the answer is that with Totals you can. It actually creates automatic backups, or you can create a backup manually. These backups are in a file format that only the software itself can open, though. Which is not a big deal to me since I am not planning on ditching this software.
Enough said. I wrote this blog just to tell you that there is accounting software for freelancers using Mac OS that is worth buying. I invite you to watch the video I made to have a quick look at the software. Remember that you can try it for free.
What about you? Are you using any accounting software? How do you organize your accounting records? Let me know in the comment section below.