Cloud accounting software can be beneficial to SMEs

Online accountants often find that their clients are using outdated accounting software packages. Typically with SMEs, this is because of a fear of the unknown.

We hear a lot about the cloud, but the prospect of migrating a lot of financial data to an online system frightens a lot of business owners. However, online accounting tools don’t need to be expensive or hard to use.

Late payment is the scourge of many small businesses. Research from Bacs recently showed that more than 50% of SMEs have been affected by late payment over the past 12 months and collectively they are owed £24 billion.

Cloud accounting packages let you see how well your business is performing and data feeds can automatically synchronise your bank account with your cloud accounting software package so you can see the state of your finances in real time. This can be a real time saving feature if you want to check whether a debtor has settled his account.

The cloud also allows multi-user access which means SMEs can allow their accountant to access their financial data remotely. As well as the obvious time saving benefits, accountants then take on the role of business advisor and financial management discussions can continue throughout the year.

New start-ups in particular, can benefit from the knowledge that their accountant is overseeing their financial transactions. After all, many small business owners have no experience of keeping books. HMRC is now clamping down on record keeping but SMEs that take to the cloud should have no problem complying with the Revenue’s requirements.

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