Whether you’re a Certified Public Accountant feeling the tax-time crunch or just trying to balance your family budget, rely on the software in the Microsoft Office suite to aid in accounting. Even the basic version of the Office suite contains a variety of applications to help run the numbers, providing ways to calculate, track and plan accounts. Before hauling out the calculator and graph pads, “account” on the Microsoft Office suite.

Track spending in the Microsoft Office Excel spreadsheet software. Excel may be the most useful Office Suite product for accounting, as it not only provides a way to create worksheets, budgets and ledgers, but it offers automated summing and chart creation. Keep track of accounts payable for a month and with one click, have Excel add everything together. If you add payments, Excel will recalculate. Use a single Excel spreadsheet as a template and streamline the accounting process.

Produce visuals of accounting information for shareholders or executives using PowerPoint, the Office suite’s presentation component. A PowerPoint slideshow is an ideal way to share accounting information. You can display graphics such as pie charts and slides with information on where money went for the year. PowerPoint presentations are built slide-by-slide. However, the software comes complete with preset template designs so you can just drop in accounting information and be good to go.

Distribute accounting information in report format with Microsoft Word, Office’s word processing program. Take advantage of Word’s included templates such as reports, newsletters and proposals to jump-start accounting reporting or start from scratch and create an annual report, budget agenda or sponsor list. Another Office suite option, Microsoft Publisher, comes with the Office Professional 2010 version and includes templates for newsletters, reports and other publications ideal for accounting.

Store important client information, records and notes in Access, Office’s database component. You don’t need long-term database programming experience; much of Access’ menus, toolbars and features will be familiar to someone who has used other Office products for accounting information.