Looking to reduce support and overhead costs on your legacy accounting software? Do you want a tried and trusted, robust, 100% cloud-based accounting solution designed for larger organisations?
It’s my goal to explain the differences between Windows systems and ‘true’ cloud-based accounting systems for medium sized organisations and the differences between cloud accounting for smaller businesses and how a medium sized business will benefit from a more appropriately designed online solution.
There are two key areas that organisations can save money and time. First off are the savings in Service Agreements and Licence and Upgrade Fees and then there are the time saving capabilities of a browser-based solution that, when set up in the right way, uses built-in technology to reduce re-keying and duplication of work.
I know from experience (28 years now!) how important it is to be in control of the business finances. By being 'in control', I mean to know, right now, exactly how much money you're owed, how much money you owe and much money you have. Without this information, running a business is a bit like driving a car without glasses (if you need glasses) - you might get to your destination unscathed but it's gonna be a bit tricky!
Problem is that doing the books is rather tiresome, a job that needs to be done properly but it's not exactly exciting. However, it needs to be done and it needs to be done quite regularly, if not daily. So we need all the help we can get. We need to be confident that we're using software that is robust, well thought out and designed for a bookkeeper/accountant.
Making Tax Digital for VAT (MTD for VAT) is set to come into effect from 1 April 2019 for businesses which have a taxable turnover above the VAT registration threshold (currently £85,000). Under MTD, businesses will be required to maintain digital records and submit VAT returns using their accounting software.
These days, a lot of cheeky providers make clever use of the general confusion in the market about what is and is not cloud software. They ‘disguise’ their on-premise, desktop or hosted business software as bona fide 'cloud' software. They do this by stamping a 'cloud' label on itand offering it in neatly packaged (monthly) subscriptions. In the best case scenario this is actually hosted, single-tenant software.
It’s not uncommon to download a trial balance into Excel and then make adjustments within Excel to produce the desired set of management reports. Problem is; that we’re back to using Excel and Excel, as good as it is, is notorious for allowing us humans to make mistakes.
One of the key benefits of accounting period control is the ability to close off each ledger once entering transactions for the period has been completed. This prevents users from changing information in a period where management reports have already been produced.
Planning or, to put it another way, having a strategy will help smooth out the negative attributes that creep in when implementing. Taking the time to create a well thought out implementation plan might have the following benefits:
How many times do you here this? I hear it quite a lot but then I ask the question “Why do you do it that way?”
No one has ever said to me, “Well, we looked at the options recently and decided that this way would work best for now”. Perhaps the way it’s being done is fine, it’s easy, you’re used to it and it seemingly works.
Stop, think – don’t rush.
Think about where you want to get to. Just like planning a route or setting the SatNav, it is better to do it before you set off.
Why is this important if you want to make improvements?
It’s a starting point. It clarifies the current processes and describes how things currently work. Writing out procedures, drawing diagrams, discussing them so that they are clearly understood is a key step.
Sometimes we struggle through without realising that if we learned the underlying principles, we would be a lot more able.