Covid Restrictions highlight benefits of Cloud Accounting

Restrictions on movement in 2020 and reliance on digital world has drawn more businesses to the Cloud

At Alexander Sloan we have long championed the benefits of using cloud accounting and this will become even more relevant as business owners and organisations react to the easing of lockdown restrictions and begin focusing on the future. However, as the uncertainty of future lockdowns continues, we would encourage you to make the move to cloud accounting software now and ensure you are taking the necessary steps to look after your business financially.

Your sole objective may be to recover and rebuild your business and in doing so you should consider the advantages of implementing cloud accounting to monitor your business finances. It is no secret that many businesses struggled with accessing government support during the summer of 2020. This was primarily due to the lack of up to date accounting information and restricted access to their accounting records due to remote working, which led to increased stress and business uncertainty.

As we now look towards the ‘new normal’, naturally we will try to hold on to the processes and procedures that we are well acquainted with. However, in doing so, are we missing the chance to make positive changes to our businesses by not ensuring we are well prepared for the risk of further lockdowns?

Why is this important?

For many years we have encouraged a move to cloud accounting to comply with HMRC’s Making Tax Digital requirements, or simply to embrace new technologies. However, this year, our message has been shaped by the business effects due to COVID-19.

We want to ensure you have complete visibility of your business finances by being able to access this anytime and anywhere, in real-time. As the pandemic led to offices being closed and a move to home working, many businesses had paperwork such as bank statements, invoices, and bills in their offices which were not accessible to finance teams. By implementing cloud accounting, the need for paperwork and desktop applications would be eliminated with the use of bank feeds and automatic invoicing.

COVID-19 is forcing businesses of all types to change the way they operate due to social distancing. Inefficiencies with the use of legacy processes that were once ignored have now been extremely exposed. These legacy processes also relate to manual accounting procedures which were paper focused but are now being adapted to ensure a more ‘access anytime, anywhere’ approach.

As the uncertainty of how long the pandemic will go on for increases to rise, we would encourage taking steps now to ensure you have complete access to your financials in the event of further lockdowns. By making a move to cloud-based accounting software now, you would be taking the necessary steps to ensure your business finances are fully accessible and eliminate the risk of key financial information being left behind in offices if further restrictions are imposed. As businesses continue to work from home, you will have peace of mind in knowing exactly where your business is financially and allow you to have real-time reporting accessible to you at any time.

Transitioning to remote working, the new norm?

The COVID-19 outbreak forced millions to embrace working from home and to undertake flexible working to a heightened level. This led to different means of working and forced the business into alternative methods of communicating with and managing their employees. This may have been through the implementation of Zoom or Microsoft Teams, however, if we think of your finance function – this would work in the same way. Cloud accounting has paved the way for remote working and ensuring complete visibility and access to your business finances.

Whilst your finance team is working from home, they can be accessing your accounting software remotely and able to ensure your accounting records are kept up to date. Not only does this ensure your staff can continue working, but it also ensures you have complete real-time information and can make better-informed business decisions.

Moving your accounting processes to the cloud will allow you to save everything you require online so that it can be accessed from anywhere, at any time. This will also make it easy for your teams to collaborate regardless of where they are working. Cloud accounting will allow you to save documents online rather than filing paperwork in offices. This will drastically reduce the amount of paperwork, printing costs, and manual input, whilst also speeding up the invoice payment process, leading to an overall more efficient way of working.

How can we help

Please contact us to find out more about cloud accounting, and how we can help your business. We offer services such as a complete migration to cloud software as well as training and consultancy services, to ensure you are ready for any eventuality. We continue to encourage the use of cloud accounting and would urge you to speak with us if you have any concerns regarding your current finance function and what to do next. We want to ensure you have complete visibility and real-time access to your accounting records as the uncertainly of further lockdowns again poses risks in you not being able to access your business finances when you most require them.