Advancements in technology have changed the way accounting and financial firms conduct business. With the use of accounting software like Dynamics 365, for example, accountants no longer have to use paper ledgers, adding machines, and pencils. Accountants can even use mobile apps to process receipts, create expense claims, and reconcile records on the go.
Thanks to online and mobile banking platforms, customers can easily transfer funds and pay their bills without having to visit the bank. Insurance policyholders can also update their records, file claims, and receive claims notifications on online portals.
While the digitization of financial management brings plenty of benefits and creates new opportunities, it also presents new challenges, such as IT downtime and cyberthreats. Fortunately, accounting and financial firms like yours can turn to managed IT services providers (MSPs) to take care of their IT needs.
What is a managed IT services provider?
An MSP is a company that offers outsourced IT support and services, such as cybersecurity, security awareness training, cloud services, and business continuity planning. Depending on your business’s needs, they can supplement your in-house IT staff or fully manage your company’s IT.
Why should accounting and financial firms partner with MSPs?
Accounting and financial firms stand to gain a lot from working with an MSP.
Cost-effective access to IT experts
Companies are bound to experience IT issues at one point or another. You could get locked out of your computer because you forgot your password. Your company’s internet connection might slow down to a crawl or your employees’ devices could get infected with malware. Rather than forking over hundreds of thousands of dollars annually to have an in-house team maintain and update your IT infrastructure, you can pay an affordable, flat monthly fee to partner with an MSP.
When you have an MSP at your side, you gain access to their team of IT specialists who all have in-depth experience and up-to-date training and certifications. A reputable MSP can handle all types of tech tasks and issues — even the most complex ones — since their technicians and engineers specialize in the different fields of IT.
Minimized IT downtime and increased productivity
When you work with an MSP, you can expect your IT system to perform optimally since they proactively maintain, update, and streamline it. They also regularly run scans and apply the latest patches to plug security gaps. Moreover, they constantly monitor your systems to spot and address potential issues before these cause any disruption. Such proactive IT maintenance and network monitoring significantly reduces the chances of IT downtime.
In addition, MSPs offer round-the-clock IT support so if something goes wrong with your IT infrastructure, you don’t have to wait until business hours to get it fixed. Technicians are available 24/7 to troubleshoot your tech issues immediately. They make sure to address the root cause of IT issues so that these will not hamper your productivity again.
Because they store treasure troves of personal and financial information, accounting and financial firms are attractive targets for cybercriminals. If your own accounting or financial company suffers a cyberattack, your clients’ banking information, corporate documents, or other sensitive information may fall into the wrong hands. This may result in devastating financial and reputational damage for your company and your clients.
Partnering with an MSP can bolster your cyber defenses since they can implement the proper safeguards to keep you protected. They also use IT security best practices to create strong passwords, encrypt your data, audit data access, and more.
Accounting and financial firms need to comply with certain US government regulations. For example, financial advisers are subject to the Gramm-Leach-Bliley Act, while public accountants are covered by the Sarbanes-Oxley Act.
Working with an MSP can ensure that your IT investments and practices meet your industry’s compliance requirements, so you won’t have to pay noncompliance fines and penalties. They can also conduct security audits and regularly test your systems to help you stay compliant.
Firms in accounting and finance have a unique set of technology requirements, so it is best to partner with an MSP like SpectrumWise that specializes in these industries. With us at your side, you will be able to rest easy knowing that an experienced IT partner is always looking after your technology. Schedule a consultation with us today.