With the world of business plunging head first into the digital age (along with the rest of the civilized world in general), there are going to be new programs, gadgets, and processes you are going to need to learn in order to keep up with the industry – and all the tech savvy millennials that are fresh out of college and on the ~job~ hunt.
One of the most prominent new-age systems to enter the industry – and accounting specifically – is the cloud.
No, not clouds that provide shade on a hot day. We are talking about the cloud.
The cloud is a vast network of servers, each designed to store and manage data, run applications, or deliver content, from around the globe that are meant to operate as a single system. It is not a physical entity, such as a hard drive or a SIM card, but rather a digital database that allows you to access files, programs, or data from any internet-capable device.
This enables you to be not only location independent but device independent at the same time.
So how does this affect you, as an accounting professional, or the accounting industry as a whole? Through the introduction of cloud accounting, of course.
To help you get ahead of the game (or play catch-up, depending on your firm and your colleagues), we’ve outlined the top 5 things you need to know about cloud accounting.
Migration Can Be A Hassel
Bad news first? Okay.
The one downside to cloud accounting is that migrating all of your information over from other software can be a tedious process. It will take both a lot of time and effort on your part (or that of your bookkeeper).
To properly transfer all of your information you may need to involve a third party, as cloud software doesn’t easily migrate certain pieces of data, and you may need to manually input information that cannot be transferred at all.
Because migration can be fickle, you may also want to review the final product to make sure everything cross-check’s properly – you wouldn’t want to find out down the road that you are missing important pieces of information!
But You Can Then Access Your Accounts Anywhere, at Anytime
Now that the hard part is over with, you can really bask in the benefits cloud accounting can offer you.
The most important thing to know about cloud accounting is that it enables you to access your information from anywhere and at anytime. Your work (at least some of it) becomes location independent – as long as you have an internet-capable device you can access any and all data, programs, etc. that you have stored in the cloud.
Ditching your office for a nice sandy beach somewhere sure sounds nice, doesn’t it?
And Share This Information With Colleagues and Clients
Not only can you access all of this information from anywhere, but you can also enable sharing, which will allow selected individuals, such as your bookkeeper, fellow accountants, or even your clients, to access the information as well.
No more old-fashioned file sharing, faxing, or ~snail mailing~ in your future – just upload it to the cloud!
Information That is Stored Safely and Securely
With the cloud, you will never have to worry about burst pipes or fires (or spilled coffee…) damaging your one and only hard copies of important documents (wait… people are still using paper…? *) or about system failures or hard-drive crashes deleting all of your files.
Everything is safe and sound in the cloud. Whether all of your computers crash or your offices burns to the ground, all of your information is backed-up in the cloud, untouched (although we hope those things don’t happen).
*As a side note, the cloud also virtually eliminates your offices need for hard copies of anything. Save trees and free up some space while you’re at it – switch to the cloud!
Without Having to Worry About Upgrades or Updates
Last but not least, you might like to know that if you are using the cloud you never have to spend your time focusing on (or paying for) system updates – the application vendor will take care of that for you!
When a new and improved version of your cloud software comes out, you will have it – automatically! Time and cost efficient.
Not to mention that you will also never have to worry about upgrading your software as your businesses needs grow – cloud accounting software is scalable, meaning you have all the room for growth that you need without any addition work or costs.
Make The Switch
Now that we have filled you in on the 5 most important things you should know about accounting and the cloud, what do you think?
Are you ready to take your business to the next ~digital~ level by making the transition from paper and hard drives to the invisible yet powerful storage, sharing, and streaming platform that is the cloud?
It’s no surprise that cloud accounting, along with other new tech-forward programs, are the future of accounting. The digital age is here and every industry is changing and evolving to not only survive in this new age but to flourish – technology is reshaping every industry and every job, most often for the better.
Now it’s your turn to change your life, and your business, for the better by embracing this new technology.