There are lots of benefits of implementing cloud accounting in your business.
This includes the fact there is less of an IT burden on your business with cloud accounting – you don’t need as much hardware (lowering capital costs) and there is no maintenance (reducing the amount of IT resources required). One of the most important benefits of cloud accounting, however, is improved levels of productivity.
Your business will become more efficient with cloud accounting, you will be able to make better decisions, and your team will work more effectively together.
One of the ways that cloud accounting helps improve productivity in your business is that it automates a number of processes which you may be doing manually at the moment. An example is handling a new customer. Currently, you might manually send a quote to this customer. When the quote is agreed, you will raise an order and then, once the work is complete, an invoice. This also has to be recorded in your sales ledger.
With cloud accounting, all these processes can be integrated, reducing the amount of times data is entered from 2-3 to just one.
Productivity levels in your business will also get a boost because you can access your accounts data anytime and from anywhere. Most modern accounting tools even give you access via mobile devices. The only thing needed is an internet connection.
This can help in a range of situations. For example, a sales person visiting a customer can access previous order information without having to leave the customer’s office or make a phone call, or you can view sales reports and more while on business out of the country.
Access Real-Time Data
Following on from the last point, having access to real-time data in itself will help make your business more productive. You can access historical reports too, but with cloud accounting you can see what is happening in your business right now, including information that your team has just input or uploaded.
Having access to real-time data like this gives you the information you need to take the right decisions. You will also have a better understanding of the performance and position of your business, and will be able to spot potential problems faster.
With cloud accounting, everyone accesses the same information on the same system. When anything is updated or new information is added, it becomes immediately available to everyone else in the team. The result is enhanced collaborative working in your business. In fact, it enhances collaborative working even if individuals and teams are based in different parts of the country – or different parts of the world.
With improved collaboration, projects and tasks can be completed quicker and you can use your resources more effectively.
Taking the Next Step
Even with the benefits of cloud accounting, some business owners are hesitant because of perceived problems with security of their information. Most IT security experts, however, would advise that cloud accounting tools are at least as secure (and are often more secure) than in-house system.
This is because of the level of security that cloud accounting providers like Xero have in place. They use enterprise-levels of security which are often a much higher grade than the security in most SMEs.
Therefore, there isn’t really a downside to moving your business to the cloud – not enough of a downside to counteract the financial and productivity benefits. If you haven’t made the move to cloud accounting yet, it is something you should definitely consider.