What is cloud accounting and how can it help my business?
PUBLISHED: 12:57 03 January 2018 | UPDATED: 12:57 03 January 2018
Everything in life is moving online - your accountancy records is no exception. Keeping your accounting in the cloud helps give you clarity and allows you to make smarter decisions, says Randall & Payne
A survey by the UK200Group, the UK’s leading membership association of independent chartered accountancy and law firms, showed that 38% of its members’ SME business clients do not currently use spreadsheets, let alone software, to manage their accounts. The UK200Group is in a unique position to collect this data, with a nationwide membership of over 150 firms, who service a total of around 150,000 SME clients.
The findings of the UK200Group’s survey are as follows with the bookkeeping method expressed as a percentage of firms surveyed: shoebox (15%), manual records (23%), computer and spreadsheets (27%), and software (35%).
What is cloud accounting?
Cloud accounting is when you use web-based software to manage your accounting online. Put simply, it allows you to work securely whenever and wherever you want. The cloud is a collective term used to describe any remote server, or computer, which stores your data when you use cloud-based software hosted on it. The software lets you access, interact with, and change your data online.
How can cloud accounting help you?
• Work anywhere: you can access your financial data from any device connected to the internet
• Real-time access: for both you and your accountant in separate locations and at the same time
• Improved communication: it’s easier to get closer to your business and financial data and gives a clearer picture of your finances as a whole
• Save time: can automatically generate invoices and can be linked to HR and payroll apps to generate payslips
• Secure: your data is stored on a secure cloud server and is constantly backed up so you don’t need to worry about your data being compromised
Choosing the right package may be confusing and occasionally, some support may be required. Randall & Payne have trained experts in the four main cloud accounting software packages: Xero, Sage One, QuickBooks and KashFlow.
Their experts can help you to choose the cloud package which best suits your business. If you are already using one but are not happy with it, they can help you decide if one of the other providers better suits your needs, and can help you with the transfer, too.
Recently a start-up business approached Randall & Payne with a package in mind, but during the set up and training process it became apparent that they wanted the ability to track the profitability of each individual project they were undertaking, so their records were transferred to a different package during the same meeting to enable this to happen. Another client had no access to reports because their bookkeeper was using a desktop version, but with cloud accounting software they now have full transparency. Training only takes a couple of hours and is tailored to individual requirements.
Keeping your records up to date has never been easier. Whether you want to automatically pull your bank statements into the software, or automate reconciling regular payments, cloud accounting can take care of it all for you. And, with most providers offering a monthly subscription, the benefits far outweigh the cost of the software.
To harness the benefits of cloud accounting, call the cloud transition experts at Randall & Payne on 01242 776000 or visit the Randall & Payne website.