How your business can benefit from cloud accounting

Cloud accounting platforms like Xero can bring your business into the 21st century. By storing your financial data online you can increase your efficiency and productivity. But if you’re still not convinced that cloud accounting is right for you, these 9 benefits should have you signing on the (electronic) dotted line.

Access your data anywhere, anytime

Cloud accounting software like Xero is fully based online, enabling you to easily login and access your business’s financial data 24/7 from any device in any location with an internet connection.

Work smarter, waste less time and maximise productivity

It’s no fun spending hours leafing through paper invoices, bills and receipts and trying to match them to transactions in your bank accounts, but luckily there is a better way. By linking your cloud accounting system directly to your bank accounts you can reconcile and match your business’s transactions with the click of a button.

You can even automate the processes of reconciliation, filing expense claims, paying bills, and tracking down late payments, reducing the risk of errors from manual data entry as well as cutting down the time it takes to reconcile transactions with the bank.

Keep your data even more secure

You might be concerned about your data being accessible 24/7 from anywhere. But with cloud software, your data is stored safely and securely off site, usually in large data centres that are managed 24 hours a day, and is only sent using encrypted connections. This means your data isn’t at risk from things that might physically affect your business, such as an employee’s laptop getting stolen, a natural disaster or fire, etc. For even more protection, when you invite users to view your data, you can control their level of access.

Easily share and collaborate online with your team and advisors

Most cloud accounting software lets you share information effortlessly with those who need it. You can limit the level of access each user has, keeping confidential information private while still allowing employees to view their payslips or file expense claims. With your permission your accountant can also easily access and view your accounts, improving the level of service and hands-on support they are able to provide you with.

View an accurate, real-time picture of your finances

Cloud software allows you to view and track your business’s current financial situation. The beauty of using an online accounting system is that it automatically syncs with your bank account, ensuring you have the most accurate, up-to-date information whenever you need it.

Build an ecosystem tailored to the needs of your business

Systems such as Xero have ecosystems with hundreds of available add ons that can complement and enhance your accounting package, usually for a low monthly cost. These apps can automate a variety of business processes, such as inventory management (check out TradeGecko) and cash flow forecasting (check out Float).

The ability to customise your accounting package at a low cost to meet the specific needs of your business is one of the biggest benefits of cloud accounting. These add ons aren’t supplied by the platforms themselves but by third party developers who usually have a close, personal understanding of the challenges your business is facing.

To see the range of task busting add ons available, visit the Xero marketplace.

Avoid the hassle of installation and maintenance with a cloud service provider that updates automatically and backs up your files

All aspects of cloud accounting platforms are run online, so you don’t have to waste time installing or backing up files. Updates are automatic and available instantly, allowing you to invest your time in other areas of your business.

Say goodbye to paper and reduce the clutter your office

Cloud accounting software makes paperwork redundant, as you can manage invoices and bills electronically and create PDF reports to email directly to your stakeholders. With that clutter gone, you can now spend more time thinking about more important things like what to do with all that extra space in your office. Table tennis anyone?

Save cash

And finally, if time and efficiency savings aren’t enough to tickle your fancy, your cloud-based accounting software removes the need to spend cash on IT servers and staff.

You can usually pay for cloud accounting software on an affordable monthly subscription that includes automatic updates and customer support rather than large yearly bills for desktop programs. You will probably find this monthly fee is much more pocket friendly than your current setup…

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