As you can see from the rest of my website I use cloud bookkeeping. This fact makes me a little biased, as I am a HUGE fan. Let me tell you why.
The main reason that online software is so popular is that that you get 24/7 access to your account on any device with internet access. Many providers even supply dedicated apps that you can use on your phone or tablet device.
Although this may not appear as something that would be important to you, the majority of people work on their bookkeeping in the evening or at weekends. These are times when you are not at your work computer, so if you have the software on an app, you can update your accounts whenever you need to.
Security is a significant concern when it comes to your online presence. All of the cloud bookkeeping websites that I checked are using proper encryption processes for your data. Many of them also give you the ability to use 2 step verification for extra protection.
If you have a bookkeeper or an accountant, you can link them into your account. They will have access to all of the information they will need to file your VAT returns, end of year accounts or general reporting. There is the bonus that if you have made a mistake, they will be able to fix it.
The final significant difference between the cloud and desktop services is that you don’t have to worry about software updates. Many desktop software suppliers rely on you to manually update your system or even worse pay for the latest upgrades, with cloud suppliers this is not an issue.
If you are already using a desktop system, you will already know that the software should have ways to input your sales, purchases and the ability to do your bank reconciliation. So, I won’t dwell on those items here.
This is the part where cloud services seem to part ways. Each of them has different add-ons which increase their functionality. I will be writing an article dedicated to add-ons for Xero which will go into this in greater detail.
If these reasons haven’t yet convinced you, let’s talk about price. When you pay for desktop software, you usually spend an amount per computer that you install it on. A cloud account has one fee per month for anyone to use. That includes the accountant and bookkeeper being able to use it as well.
For more information about what each system can offer, I recommend using their one-month free trials. You may turn into as big a fan as I am.
- On October 1, 2018