Technology is making it easier for companies to go global. And one of the major enablers of this change has been cloud computing.
Cloud computing provides companies enhanced access to business data and intelligence, across all business functions and locations.
One of the beneficiaries of major growth in this area has been the availability, and subsequent popularity, of cloud-based accounting software.
Offering companies, global entities, and startups tighter control over their accounting data, cloud accounting improves business agility, allowing them greater mobility, and scalability.
- What is cloud accounting software?
- 4 advantages of cloud accounting software
- Choosing the right software
- Should your company move to cloud accounting?
What is cloud accounting software?
Put simply, cloud accounting software moves a company’s accounting data from its own local computers and servers to a service provider’s remote servers – “The Cloud”. Here it is processed and stored securely for later access via any standard internet connection.
This flexibility gives businesses and users access to the most up to date accounting software version, without having to continuously update. So ensuring everyone is using the correct version.
Costs of these services are usually based on the number of users required, and / or the volume of transactions that are processed. The costs will also include secure backups of the company’s data and disaster recovery.
4 advantages of cloud accounting software
Real-time data collection and monitoring
This is probably the best part of cloud accounting software. It allows routine accounting tasks to be completed in a few clicks. Data can be accessed, generating real-time financial analysis, modelling and compliance reports.
Areas of concern can be highlighted and addressed promptly, and more time can be spent understanding the results. Thus providing perceptive information to drive improvements by the new global subsidiary.
Better business intelligence
Cloud technology enables Enterprise Resource Planning (ERP) and allows the integration of different software applications across business departments. Wherever they may be located, to collect, store, manage, and interpret data.
This includes accounting, customer relationship management (CRM), human resources, inventory, and order management. ERP integrates these various functions into one complete system to streamline processes and information across the entire global organisation.
Greater collaboration and transparency of all global subsidiaries
Head office and management can now see how their global subsidiaries are performing, with immediate access to files, data, and reports. There is no hiding!
With key functions within an organisation having access to its information and data, it opens up for better collaboration of idea sharing and analysis of the data and results. Business partners, accountants, and third party consultants can access the data to provide faster, better service and advice.
Cloud accounting software allows relevant parties to work together on an activity, goal or project to team up and work on the same data, thereby increasing turnaround times and employee productivity.
Better focus on core competencies
Cloud accounting software enables the new subsidiary’s resources to be focused on business essentials, such as sales and marketing, or its core functions, and not in maintaining IT infrastructure within the new entity.
Choosing the right software
Due diligence should be undertaken to choose the appropriate cloud accounting software that will work best for your company. It should provide the right information, and ease of reporting needed to meet regulatory compliance and management needs.
Some software applications include multicurrency and multi-language features. These features are particularly important for global corporations where language and currency differences bring a new complexity to conducting business.
Most packages can be integrated with existing accounting applications and other CRM and Enterprise Resource Planning (ERP) software. Tying together existing business intelligence with existing data from other entities and divisions.
Some of the more popular cloud accounting software services include Xero, MYOB, SAP, Netsuite, Financial Force and Quickbooks.
Your accountant can help in choosing the software that will meet your company’s needs and future growth prospects.
Once you have chosen the right one for your business, setting up is straightforward – you simply access your new company file through the internet.
Should your company move to cloud accounting?
Most cloud-based accounting software is designed to scale as your business grows. This increases the likelihood and speed of success of the new subsidiary.
With many packages available, it can be hard to decide the best one that fits the changing needs of your company. Perhaps there are particular industry regulations that need to be met as well.
Fortunately, the team at Penguin Management has the experience of working with these packages and can advise you on which one will best suit your business.
After all, it is hard to evaluate a software application until you have used it!