Cloud Accounting Software Enables Secure Remote Financial Management
Companies with cloud accounting software in place before winter 2020 were in a much stronger position to weather the changes forced by the pandemic than those without it. As companies scrambled to keep their employees safe, those without the ability to connect virtually found themselves at a loss as to how to keep updated with their teams.
The finance and accounting team plays such a critical role in any company that, amazingly, companies would consider NOT adding a cloud ERP system. With the ever-changing scene created by the global pandemic along with other, more commonplace reasons, like a child home sick from school or an elderly parent needing a ride to a doctor’s office, enabling financial professionals to telecommute makes good sense.
5 Reasons Why It’s Time to Transition to Cloud Accounting Software
Companies often wait to transition to cloud ERP, often long after the need for upgraded software has become apparent. Many shy away from the cost, while others fear the disruption that such a transition often brings with it.
Neither are good reasons to wait. There are five very good reasons to transition to cloud accounting software now.
- One Information Source
A single-source platform, such as Acumatica cloud ERP, offers more depth and breadth of information than multiple disconnected systems. In cloud ERP, all company information flows into one central system, where it can be viewed and used by everyone throughout the company. The cloud ensures such information is real-time. Information inputted in the main office can be viewed by all the branch offices just as easily as a telecommuting worker can view information from the home office.
Such real-time, consolidated information ensures that everyone throughout the company is working from the same premise. Instead of using outdated information, managers have updated information from which to form judgments and strategies. It gives companies an outstanding competitive advantage.
- Broader Talent Pool
Some companies still find it hard to let go of old ways. This includes insisting that employees can only be effective if they work together in person.
For some, this may be true, but the pandemic has forced many changes into the workforce. People who once thought they couldn’t get any work done at home have found to their surprise that working from home offers incredible benefits. Not only can you get more done at home, but you can also take better care of yourself and your family.
Because many have realized the opportunities of continuing to telecommute, the demand for telecommuting opportunities will continue to grow over time. Take the CFO role, for example. The best CFOs are in high demand, but some may not wish to relocate.
Companies that offer telecommuting benefits may be able to attract the very best talent by offering flexible work arrangements. This is a huge benefit for firms that may struggle to find the right talent from their local community. By enabling telecommuting, you can draw more experienced talent from a large geographic area.
- Improved Data Access and Accuracy
Legacy systems are often on-site systems. These systems require cumbersome updates to ensure data is accurate. With cloud accounting software, any change made in one part of the system is reflected throughout. Data are not just accessible, but also highly accurate.
You may wonder how adding a new cloud accounting software system is cost-effective compared to retaining a legacy system. Cloud ERP such as Acumatica offers a flexible pricing model that makes it more affordable than you think to make the change to cloud accounting software.
Take into consideration the money you are currently spending to maintain legacy systems. Many are no longer supported by the software developer, so their security isn’t as tight as it once was. Older systems that need to connect with other systems may require special coding to make them work, which is an added expense. And, as time goes by, it may be more challenging to find programmers with the knowledge and skills to make changes to older systems.
Updating to cloud accounting software makes good financial sense when you also take into consideration the high cost of hardware maintenance and data storage. Added up, all of these costs are often higher than you think.
- Greater Productivity
Companies with older accounting software may be unaware that new integrations with ERP systems such as Acumatica have added many time-saving improvements to accounting functions.
Take the common task of issuing invoices to customers. In older accounting systems, you may need to generate the invoice, make it into a PDF, and then open an email system and upload the invoice to the email, then send it. It takes several minutes and many clicks, as well as multiple software packages, to send one invoice.
Now imagine a cloud ERP accounting software system with all the tools to handle AR built right in. Instead of opening the accounting platform and the email system, one click generates the invoice and sends it on its way to the customer.
It might only be minutes shaved off of a task, but it quickly adds up when you consider how many invoices your company sends out daily and how many accounting tasks can be automated with newer cloud accounting software.
The Mobile CFO
The “command center” of any accounting and finance department is the CFO. This person is responsible for the financial management of the company along with managing the entire accounting and finance department.
Most CFOs interact with all departments and managers. They guide, teach, and explain the budgets, finances, and other vital financial information to the staff.
With an on-site legacy accounting system, the CFO must be onsite to tackle any task. But is their time well spent onsite? For example, if the CFO has a meeting with the operations manager, do they need to meet in person or will a phone call do? In some companies with multiple locations, it’s likely that people do indeed meet by phone rather than travel to in-person meetings. And, in that case, wouldn’t it be more convenient to have one computer system that everyone can access?
CFOs no longer need to be tied down to an office. They can be mobile, working virtually, thanks to cloud ERP systems which link all data through the internet. Companies whose CFOs travel frequently for business or who have numerous locations will find it much easier and more efficient to use cloud ERP.
Improved Data Security
One sometimes overlooked feature of cloud accounting software is the improvement in data security.
Consider where you keep your company records. Do you keep them in file cabinets? Are they kept on disks or thumb drives stored inside a cabinet?
What about all the personnel and financial records at your company? How do you keep them secure?
Although some companies may feel that by storing records in a file cabinet and off the net they are keeping them safe, it’s simply not true. Stolen records that can be used to forge identities or for credit theft are worth $21.85 per record, according to some experts. A single spreadsheet contained on a thumb drive might be worth thousands of dollars to a thief, and it’s a lot easier to slip it into a pocket than you’d think.
Cloud accounting software secures data in many ways. First, it secures it against physical loss or damage by spreading the information across computer servers located in multiple locations. This ensures a natural or manmade disaster won’t wipe out an entire company’s files. Backups are kept elsewhere, with multiple backups ensuring that even a widescale event won’t disrupt company business.
Next, cloud software can be updated automatically by the software vendor on the cloud. It does not rely upon the IT department to find time to update the software onsite but simply updates it continuously to close security loopholes. This ensures much better security than most companies can provide.
Lastly, have you ever thought about user-level security? Cloud software can be set so access to various parts of the financial system is controlled according to the role. Users can be given restricted access with varying degrees of trust. This ensures that highly confidential and sensitive data remains in the hands of the CFO or managers who understand the ramifications of sharing it outside of the company.
Acumatica Cloud ERP
With all these benefits and so few drawbacks, it’s time to consider cloud accounting software. Acumatica cloud ERP offers outstanding benefits, a flexible payment option, and a highly secure system. It can be customized to user roles and needs and integrates easily with many common third-party software.
If you’re interested in learning more about Acumatica, we invite you to explore the information online. There is also a white paper and calculator to help you assess the cost and benefits of migrating to Acumatica cloud ERP.
We’re here to help, so please do let us know if you have any questions about Acumatica cloud ERP.
Mindover Software Consulting
At Mindover Software, we understand the challenges faced by home healthcare agencies seeking to improve customer service. We’d be happy to help you get started. You may contact us or call 512-990-3994 to learn more about software that enhances customer service.