2 Accounting software

Doing business in Japan

Financial software in Japan lags behind the West by about five years in sophistication and price. When starting a business here, finding the right accounting system can become one of many headaches.

Setting up a giant computer system or bringing in the system used by the parent company tends to be a mistake, from both a cost and function perspective. Inexpensive “off the shelf” PC accounting software from your home country also tends not to be an ideal option. The drawbacks of these methods are the consumption tax system used in Japan and the number of digits involved in currency transactions here.

Until your budget permits the purchase or construction of a customized accounting system, the most practical and cost-effective solution would be to utilize Japanese accounting and tax professionals familiar with Japanese accounting software packages. They can then download the necessary information into a spreadsheet for you and your parent company. This solution is not necessarily the cheapest, but it certainly costs less than constructing a large in-house accounting system from scratch.

For a new business operation, sending monthly reports in spreadsheet format by email to the parent company will usually prove sufficient in providing the information the parent company requires.