With digital technology having such an immense impact on how people work, the old methods of handling tax reports and other accounting data are no longer enough to achieve desirable results. Clients expect technologically advanced solutions for their accounting needs. This is why accountants and auditors are taking advantage of technology solutions to make their work easier and deliver better services. Not keeping pace with this wave of digitization means disappointing clients and being edged out by the competition.
In recent years, cloud technology has revolutionized the way accounting firms operate. Just like in enterprises, cloud computing for small businesses has become an integral part of operations and services. That's because the cloud provides unprecedented access to computing resources that are more mobile, cost-effective, powerful, secure, scalable, and competitive than their own in-house IT infrastructure.
This makes the cloud suitable to overcome some technology challenges and problems that accountants typically face. Here are some examples.
How can your CPA firm do accounting remotely?
Time is money. The faster your accounting firm can render client services, the better. The ability to work remotely or out of the office presents a clear advantage in this regard. This will allow your accountants to manage client accounting data outside the office anytime, anywhere. This way, urgent accounting/auditing tasks can be done even outside office hours.
A chief hurdle to this flexibility is an inability to access accounting software or its data remotely. Many popular accounting software like Quickbooks are hosted on local computers, limiting accountants to use them only in the office.
By hosting these applications and their data in the cloud, the problem is solved. Your accountants will be able to fulfill client services when the need is urgent. All they will need is an internet connected device and authorized access to the cloud environment hosting the app.
How can your CPA firm simplify accounting data workflows?
Depending on their expertise, your accountants work on and filter out required information on a significant amount of client data for use in filing taxes, managing reports, and so on. One piece of information can go through different accounting processes and get shared with several teams, who edit it several times to meet client-specific requirements. This creates a lot of complications, as multiple files of the same data are created and shared, creating inefficiencies in time management and data storage.
With cloud-based accounting software/systems, your accountants can collaborate on the same data, updating it in real time. All the updates made to a single file will be tracked and visible. They will no longer have to make and save multiple copies of the same file on different local computers.
How can your CPA firm protect client data from cyberthreats?
Your client data is confidential. As such, your clients trust your firm to keep their data safe and secure from unauthorized or illegal use. Nowadays, loss and theft of client data can be very embarrassing for a firm especially if the incident gets reported to the public.
A damaged reputation is just one of the detrimental costs. Consider that the average financial blow to an enterprise of a data breach is $3.92 million according to a 2019 report from IBM. Clearly, keeping data stored locally in office servers is not enough.
Your organization can avoid this by using cloud-based storage, which has various security measures in place to mitigate the risks and prevent data breaches. By migrating your client’s data to the cloud, it will be protected by multiple protective solutions such as firewalls, encryption, intrusion detection, and multifactor authentication, which combine to build a multilayered defense.
How can your CPA firm eliminate or minimize downtime?
If your accountants work on applications and data located on your local computer systems, then your firm is inherently at risk. Relying on on-premises apps and data can make it difficult to predict when a technical malfunction, power outage, data breach, or any number of disasters will bring down your network or systems. And because downtime can last from minutes to hours and even days, your firm risks disappointing clients and losing money, as your accountants lose productivity.
Cloud-based business continuity, data backup, and disaster recovery are designed to protect your data and offer quicker recovery so that your firm can recover critical data and resume operations as quickly as possible in the event of a breach or downtime. Even as your office and systems are down, data and applications are available to be accessed anywhere there’s an internet connection.
How can your CPA firm reduce operational expenses?
Accounting firms need to invest in servers, computers, software, and other advanced IT infrastructure to operate. Firms also need to hire professionals to maintain these resources. When added up, these operational expenses can bloat an IT budget and may be too much for smaller firms.
This is why cloud technology is highly suitable for CPA firms. Depending on your needs, you can select from cloud services and pay for them at fixed/scalable/affordable prices. With a cloud-based infrastructure, you eliminate the need to invest heavily in IT infrastructure and to hire IT support personnel because data centers are owned and maintained by the service provider.
Cloud technology is highly beneficial for CPAs and accounting firms. Remote data accessibility, maximum uptime, and lower operational expenses are just some of the cloud advantages you can expect from us here at SpectrumWise. Give us a call and find out more.
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