Cloud computing introduces location independence- which means that you can access your work from anywhere with an Internet connection. This is a major benefit for accounting firms that have multiple offices and remote workers.Also, the worries of somebody damaging your hardware or stealing, say, an external hard drive with important information still exists, but your work is always safe in the cloud. This brings us to our next point:
Cloud services are the modern pinnacle of encryption and security, which means that if you’re responsible with your account credentials, nobody but you will be able to access your client’s confidential files. Instead of locking your things in a physical safe, which can be easily cracked or broken with brute force, why not store the information where nobody can get to them- the cloud? More and more local, state and vendor regulations are requiring accounting firms to secure their hosted client confidential data.
Some accountants carry around binders that’re insanely organized and divided, with different sections and subdivisions for every other thing. All that physical clutter goes away when you move to a cloud medium. Instead of chugging around a notebook that anybody could snatch and run off with, why not file important bank notes and other such confidential documents in the cloud, where they can’t be reached by someone with sticky fingers?
Social security numbers, financial information, passwords, deeply personal information…some accountants keep them in their files, safes and journals, but what about a private cloud server used just to store your confidential client data? Nobody else will have access to it- heck, most people won’t even know about it unless you tell them- so you won’t need to be as paranoid about problems like identity theft or people just getting into your firm’s files. Depending on the cloud service you use, you can also send or share your files with your coworkers or clients to let them work from that or give you feedback for whatever it is you’re showing them.
And here’s where we come to the big one: price. Is paying for hosting and using cloud servers for your work and documents more expensive than keeping it locally? Well, yes. However, consider the points listed above: is the safety of your work, the security of your confidentiality, and the convenience of cloud computing worth the money to you? That’s your choice to make.
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