What do clouds, rainbows and accounting have in common?
Normally those are three things that you wouldn’t necessarily hear in a sentence together. But cloud-based accounting really can make rainbows appear in your business. And that is why we think you should embrace it wholeheartedly!
Let’s face it; if you are self-employed or running your own business, your bookkeeping obligations can be a bit of a drag. You got into this to do what you love and be your own boss – not to spend hours at a computer screen trying to make sense of invoices, transactions and tax.
But then, cloud-based accounting entered the market. Many small business owners are choosing to move to the cloud due to the increased ease and efficiency. So if you are still doing your accounting the old-fashioned way, it might be time for a change!
What does it mean to be cloud-based?
Is my information literally floating in the sky?
Kind of! Cloud-based software gives users access to accounting technology on a subscription basis. You pay a monthly or annual fee, and the provider remotely and securely hosts the databases and servers. You can easily access your data from anywhere at any time by simply going online.
Let’s explore why cloud-based accounting is so much better than the old traditional paper methods!
Problems with traditional accounting systems
- It’s inflexible – Older accounting software is installed on your computer and is usually limited to exactly that – your one Data cannot be securely transferred from one place to another, it often requires the use of a USB drive or something similar. That jeopardises the security of your information and limits where you can do your work (hint – that means you can’t sneak in cafe working hours!)
- It’s risky – It’s also common to only have one account or user login, because buying additional licences for other users is very expensive. This means if your computer is lost, stolen, or has a virus – you’re up the proverbial creek. Computers can be vulnerable to viruses, and if all of your data is stored on one PC, you could lose it in one hit.
- It’s outdated – As the software gets older, it gets more out of date and inefficient for your growing business needs. It can be an expensive process to upgrade existing software and keep access to your old data.
- It’s unreliable – Speaking of data, some older systems do not have the capacity to back it up at all. We’ve all accidentally deleted something that we really shouldn’t have. Not being able to get it back is a less than ideal situation.
- You’re on your own – It’s almost impossible to get help or support when something is going wrong with your old accounting software. There is usually a customer support phone number, which is either never answered or it’s disconnected.
Benefits of cloud-based accounting systems
- It’s accessible – Wherever you have Internet or mobile data, you can access your business information. This is essential for meetings on the go or for work trips where you can’t be at your desk, but need to be able to see or edit your data. It also means that your accountants have a clear and up-to-date overview at all times. No more frantic searching for receipts and invoices at tax time!
- It’s streamlined – Cloud-based accounting systems are relatively new and have been designed to be user-friendly and largely automated. This cuts out a lot of the administrative work for you, giving you more time for other things.
- It’s really smart – Most cloud-based systems are sophisticated and go way beyond basic spreadsheets and calculations. They feature detailed budgeting and financial analysis and come with heaps of other features to help you run your business better.
- It Saves You Time – Systems like Xero offer one-click reconciliations, tax and GST reporting (with a direct link to upload to IRD), the ability to set up repeating invoices, automatic invoice reminders and so much more. That means it saves you hours of time completing these tasks manually.
As you can see, we are complete cloud advocates here at Accountants Plus. If you are interested in knowing more about how cloud-based accounting can streamline your business, or even how we can help you manage your cloud accounts then get in touch with us today.