The Restaurants Association of Ireland was formed in 1970 with the initial goal of forming a strong lobby that would represent the industry at the Government-level on issues of importance to the Irish restaurant industry. The Association now represents in excess of 2,500 members, with establishments representing full-service restaurants, coffee shops, hotel restaurants, gastropubs, golf clubs, and cookery schools. They also represent over 150 trade partners and businesses that are approved suppliers of products and services for restaurants. We caught up with them to learn about their experience of moving from Quickbooks to Accounting Seed.
The Restaurant Association of Ireland implemented Quickbooks in 1994 as its accounting software. Over the years, the association’s team grew to 16 people and manual processes were making scaling harder and more inefficient the more successful they became.
As their membership grew, more and more forms were being manually filled out to capture new member details and then passed up to accounts to be manually inputted into Quickbooks. The sales team at the Restaurant Association of Ireland had started using Salesforce and naturally, a question the team had asked was, ‘Can you integrate Salesforce with Quickbooks.
Tony Dalton, an accountant for the RAI explained to Prodigy, “We were told ‘yes’ they integrate, but in reality, the integration left a lot to be desired and didn’t really solve the problems we needed”
Another bottleneck the association faced was empowering reps on the ground to be able to help out with fee collection. “Fee collection was centralised to accounts creating a bottleneck and making more manual work in chasing. We know that the first year is a critical year for any association as you pay to acquire a new member, so it’s critical to keep them on. We needed to be able to give reps more control over this, so they could collect membership renewals when engaging with members on other issues. We knew this was something we really needed to get to, but with Quickbooks it was going to be hard”.
The team at Prodigy helped the association and Tony in the process of moving from Quickbooks to Accounting Seed.
“Accounting Seed helped us implement some more challenging finance policies. For example, membership is only recognised on payments received whereas other areas such as tickets for events, were recognised on invoicing.”
One of the true benefits of Accounting Seed is it’s not ‘integrated’ with Salesforce, but built natively on Salesforce, to ensure reporting around the same objects in Salesforce creates one true view. More on that here
“Using Accounting Seed made our data cleaner. We had no more duplicate records. The level of reporting is also highly customisable and powerful”.
“If it wasn’t for Accounting Seed, we would have hired another person for manual data input. It has definitely helped the Restaurant Association of Ireland to be more efficient.”
“Prodigy’s response times are excellent. They were always back with an answer straight away and on the rare occasion they couldn’t answer straight away, they’d always acknowledge your email.”
“You can tell they genuinely care about the customer. I never heard the clock ticking when I was working with them. I would highly recommend them.”