"The first rule of any technology used in a business is that automation applied to an efficient operation will magnify the efficiency. The second is that automation applied to an inefficient operation will magnify the inefficiency."

- BILL GATES

There are two categories of business software packages:

  • Horizontal
  • Vertical

Horizontal business software is designed for a broad range of businesses. It typically includes General Ledger, Accounts Payable, and Accounts Receivable. Quickbooks Pro is an example. More expensive horizontal packages may include Payroll, Inventory, Order Processing, Service Orders, Job Costing, Bill Of Materials, Forecasting, etcetera.

Vertical business software is narrowly focused on a specific type of business. It attempts to manage every facet of the target business. Sometimes it includes access to manufacturers' pricing data. Dedicated vertical packages exist for:

Dental office
Medical office
Automobile dealership
Automobile service shop
Construction contractor
Law office
Clothing retailer
etcetera