You’ve probably heard a lot about cloud computing and cloud accountancy, but perhaps you’re not sure what the fuss is all about. Friends are saying you’re behind the times, but your office isn’t like a scene from The Christmas Carol, with scribes wielding quills and filling endless sheets of paper with calculations! You already use a computerised accounting system. So what’s the big deal?
The Cloud is a big deal, because….
It’s where the slickest accounting packages are to be found.
Like it or not, your accountancy software is being left behind – and every update needs to be tediously overseen (and sometimes paid for) by you or your IT guru. Cloud accountancy software is being constantly improved and updated, and these updates are part of the service you pay for. Usually updates will be down without any effort from you.
It’s probably more secure than your current accounting system. Yes, really.
You worry about the safety of your data in the Cloud. That’s understandable. However, it’s in the best interests of the service providers to ensure your data is secure – and how secure is your current system, anyway? As secure as your anti-virus and security software (which of course you update every second of the day –don’t you?), the laptop Jeff took home last Tuesday, the USB drive Sue carries around that’s full of payroll information, the email you sent the boss last week…? Hmm… The fact that your data has to be transported around your company and sent off to your accountant means it’s not that secure at all, doesn’t it? Additionally, all your data could be lost in the event of flood, fire, burglary or any other disaster that causes the loss or damage of hardware. If your data is in the Cloud, this kind of risk is removed.
It’s accessible anytime, anyplace
Cloud accounting means that accountancy no longer needs to be a 9 to 5 in-office pursuit. Phones, tablets, laptops, desktop computers; it doesn’t matter what you’re using, if it has an internet connection, then you can access your accounts.
Anyone and everyone who needs access to the company’s financial data can be provided with login details, allowing them to view the same data simultaneously and work on it together.
It allows for real-time financial management
Your data is always up-to-date, whenever and wherever you access it. No waiting for receipts and invoices to be faxed, emailed to you or added to the system tomorrow; colleagues and employees can input as much financial information as you’re happy with, and you will be able to view it as soon as it is entered.
It can save you time, money and space
Keeping your bookkeeping up-to-date and sharing your data with colleagues and the company accountant is much quicker when everything is held in the Cloud. Rather than software that may need expensive replacement, and hardware and operating systems that may need updating to support it, opting for Cloud accounting means you will usually pay a regular fee to your service provider.
They will update and maintain that software – and will also maintain the servers that hold your data, which may mean you can get rid of a server or two and use that air-conditioned room for storing your lunchtime salad instead.