Many small businesses are moving their financial systems into ‘the cloud’. This means financial data is stored and accessed online, on systems such as Xero. There’s plenty of advantages when compared to traditional desktop software such as Sage – here’s a brief overview of the main benefits:
Automatic back-ups & software updates
The software and data is online, so there’s no need to run updates or backups as this is all done automatically for you. If your computer malfunctions you can be confident that your data will still be accessible in the cloud from another device.
If your business has workers based offsite, they can be given access to be able to view data online. Whether it is a co-director reviewing the figures from their home office or a travelling salesperson looking at their monthly sales, online access to up-to-date figures can be a very valuable tool in business planning. It can also help your accountant keep an eye on how your business is doing and spot any potential problems during the year, rather than realising when it is too late.
Bank feeds & automatic data entry
Bank transaction data is securely streamed directly to your accounting software. This helps keep on top of late payers so you know who you should be chasing for payment. Rules can be set in the system to automatically categorise transactions. Data entry and input errors can be reduced, saving valuable time.
If your business sends out recurring invoices (e.g. for monthly or weekly fees), cloud software can automate this process and email invoices directly out to your clients. Email templates can be set up and customised to give a more personal feel.
Real time information
Business owners can get a snapshot of business performance at any time. This is very useful for planning for investment, staffing, tax liabilities and assessing the profitability of different departments within a business.
If you think your business could benefit from moving its systems to the cloud, please get in touch.