11 December 2018
We asked Donna Parkin, cloud accounting manager with UHY Torgersens’ to give us her perspective on cloud accounting, an essential tool to allow small businesses to access real-time financial information.
Tell us about your role
My role is essentially to inform our clients of the benefits of cloud accounting software, with the aim of encouraging them to convert their record keeping/accounting system to a cloud-based system. I have to keep up to date with all the changes in the software and the introduction of new apps to the market. With the introduction of MTD for VAT my role has become more focussed (for the time being) on ensuring that those of our clients who will be affected by the change in VAT legislation are prepared in advance of 1st April 2019.
Why do you think cloud accounting is important for today’s businesses?
Technology continues to become more and more advanced at a very fast pace and provides business with many benefits. I think that it’s essential for businesses to keep up with these advancements and reap the rewards. Cloud accounting is important for today’s businesses because it offers flexibility and makes everyday tasks easier. It’s a cost-effective solution, perfect for smaller businesses that don’t have the resources to invest in secure in-house systems. Cloud software is a great tool to enable you to have real-time information to help make strategic business decisions.
What have been the biggest challenges for clients transitioning to a cloud-based system?
I think the biggest challenge for clients is embracing a change to their norm. I hear a lot of ‘but we’ve always done it this way’ or ‘I won’t be able to do that’, but in most cases once I get in front of a client and show them how user-friendly the software is, outline the benefits and allay any concerns they have around the costs involved, they become enthused and are keen to make the switch to cloud accounting.
What have been the main benefits that your clients have gained from cloud?
There are many advantages to cloud accounting, but I think the best way to communicate some of the benefits is to give you some feedback we’ve received from our clients;
- Our data is held securely and regularly backed up
- We can easily access it from anywhere with an internet connection
- The system is user-friendly, logical and efficient
- It’s saved us a lot of time and allowed us to concentrate on other areas of the business
What would your advice be to a business considering a transfer to cloud accounting?
My advice to a business considering a transfer to cloud accounting is firstly: go for it and secondly: give me a call! The first step is to assess your current accounting system to ensure that you choose the right software package for you/your business. By reviewing the processes you currently use, you can identify areas where efficiencies can be made. Once you decide on the right package for you, be prepared to invest some time to get things up and running properly. Remember, the information you get out of the software is only as good as the data you put in.
For further information about bank feeds or any other aspect of cloud accounting, please contact Donna Parkin on 0191 567 8611 or d.parkin@uhy-torgersens.
As one of the leading firms of accountants in the North East, with offices in Newcastle, Sunderland and Jarrow, we have the expertise to advise you on a wide range of tax-related issues. If you would like to speak to one of our local experts, please contact us.
Alternatively, you can fill out our contact form here.