Online accounting packages bundle payroll processing

The online accounting market just got hotter, as MYOB announced new products and joins rival Xero in an offer of free payroll processing.

Upstart online accounting service Xero and stalwart MYOB will both offer free payroll processing in their accounting packages.

Xero’s announcement came after it announced the acquisition of Paycycle, a fellow traveller in the software-as-a-service/cloud computing market. Paycycle will quickly be welded to Xero, and “all Xero customers will experience the convenience of being able to access both payroll and accounting systems online via their Xero user account at no additional cost” according to a press release issued today.

The founders of Paycycle score half a million in cash and twice that amount in Xero shares.

MYOB’s payroll offering is an upgrade to its LiveAccounts product, which CEO Tim Reed says “ … is designed to meet the needs of sole traders, start-ups and smaller businesses, and a key requirement of these business owners is having an accounting package that is not only reasonably priced, but has simple accounting features and functionality.”

Reed also announced a new product, AccountRight Basics, to replace its BusinessBasics product, and says the heir is a “hybrid alternative brought to life – solutions that seamlessly combine the strengths of online connectivity with the rich functionality of desktop.”

We’re not quite sure what that means, but MYOB says it make “…it easier for businesses to email invoices and statements, mail-merge customer letters (via Word) and view and analyse reports in Microsoft Excel.”

“MYOB has rebuilt the reports and forms functions to make tailoring reports and forms (such as invoices and statements) a breeze for business owners.”

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