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What is cloud accounting?
Cloud accounting software is similar to traditional, on-premises, or self-install accounting software, only the accounting software is hosted on remote servers, similar to the SaaS (Software as a Service) business model. Data is sent into “the cloud,” where it is processed and returned to the user.
All application functions are performed off-site, not on the user’s desktop. In cloud computing, users access software applications remotely through the Internet or other network via a cloud application service provider.
Using cloud accounting software frees the business from having to install and maintain software on individual desktop computers.
Cloud accounting solutions also allow employees in other departments, remote or branch offices to access the same data and the same version of the software.
Organizational reporting and visibility
With cloud accounting, it’s also easier to get real-time reporting and visibility throughout your organization, with greater mobile capabilities and collaboration. Subscription-based models are popular among cloud accounting providers, and in most cases these subscriptions are usage-based. Companies that pay a cloud accounting subscription receive updates to the software as soon as they arrive, with no additional software purchases required.
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Is my financial data secure?
Cloud accounting solutions provide an equally secure (and sometimes even more secure) method of storing financial information than traditional accounting software. For instance, a company computer or laptop with critical financial information could be lost or stolen, which could lead to an information breach. Cloud accounting, however, leaves no trace of financial data on company computers, and access to that data in the cloud is encrypted and password protected.
Sharing data is also less worrisome. With cloud accounting, two people simply need access rights to the same system with their unique passwords. Traditional methods often require flash drives to transport data, which could be lost or stolen.
Lastly, cloud providers usually have backup servers in two or more locations. Should one server network go down, you still have access to your data. Information kept just on-premises could be destroyed or damaged in a fire or natural disaster, and may never be recovered.
Will cloud accounting save me money
Companies that use cloud accounting require less initial server infrastructure to store data, and IT staff is not required to maintain it or update the cloud accounting system. Fewer overhead expenses and no new software purchases mean greater savings for businesses. For the on-premises world it’s the exact opposite. Every time a firm grows, they encounter greater software license and maintenance costs as well as new licenses and fees for database, systems management and other software.
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