Chris Stark in Cloud Tech: 3 Ways to Make the Cloud Work for Your Accountancy Firm

This article originially appeared in Cloud Tech here. By Christopher Stark,  October 2, 2014 Your firm’s success is tied to the satisfaction of your clients. Providing the best financial services, regardless of the location or time, is possible with the cloud. The main attraction to the cloud is the fact that critical information can be stored securely and retrieved instantly. Whether conducting a working lunch in a boardroom or reviewing files before a red‐eye flight in an airport, data is easily accessible when you need it most. This aspect of the cloud eliminates geographical obstacles and time constraints enabling CPA firms to assist clients anytime, anywhere. Accountants’ greatest responsibilities are preparing, examining and analyzing clients’ sensitive accounting records. Interpreting the minutiae of financial statements is labour intensive, so any hardware or software issues a company may endure is counterproductive. Time is money for all parties. Firms employing a cloud solution can focus on their main task, while service providers take care of troubleshooting and maintenance necessary to keep everything running smoothly. Making the decision to migrate to the cloud is a huge undertaking for any CPA firm. When your firm decides the cloud is right for you, the following three tips must be examined to guarantee the effectiveness of your desired cloud solution.

  1. Make sure the cloud service provider understands your needs. Your firm has its own unique needs and challenges. In order to find the solution that helps you meet established business goals, a potential service provider must listen to and comprehend your firms’ main objectives and capabilities.
  2. Your cloud solution should be customized. Your firm is different from the countless number of other firms around the nation, so why should the cloud solution be the same for every firm? A “one‐size‐fits‐all” cloud model won’t fit the needs of every firm, so a carefully‐crafted, customized cloud solution tailored to your firm will help to ensure a high‐level of productivity and improve overall efficiency.
  3. The service provider must keep you up‐to‐date. While you and your staff focus on client needs, your cloud provider should be focusing on the maintenance of the technological advancements that help your firm become more efficient. Your service provider should act as an outsourced IT team and have a finger on the pulse of the current trends in cloud computing. This will help to ensure your firm’s cloud service is the most advanced, effective solution available.

Choosing a cloud provider is a complex decision that takes time. Selecting the right provider will allow your firm to direct its attention to billable hours, increase productivity and produce desired results. Considering the number of potential cloud providers in the marketplace, it’s important for CPA firms to do their due diligence when selecting a service provider. Put yourself in your clients’ shoes. Do you want a service provider that you can trust with your firm’s critical data? Your answer should help you make an informed decision when choosing the service provider that fits your firm’s needs. (Read more on the full article PDF : 2014-10-02 Cloud Tech)  

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