Cloud Accounting or Traditional Accounting
– Why Cloud is Better for Small Businesses

Cloud Accounting or Traditional AccountingRegardless of what type of business you run or the size of it, accounting and paper work are essential components. Over the years accounting software has advanced even further, and now business owners are faced with oodles of options to meet the individual needs of their own profession.

Cloud9 Free Cloud computing and Application Hosting webinarsTracking expenses, invoicing applications, bookkeeping and accounting is tedious – no matter how good you are at the math and organizational side of things. But, if you don’t stay on top of it or make it a priority, it doesn’t take long before your business becomes a hectic mess or worse – and funds are lost or unaccounted for.

See also: Infographic: Cloud Accounting Software
– Why You Should Move Accounting to Cloud in 2014

With the emergence of cloud accounting solutions creating huge media fanfare in the last 3 years, traditional accounting software has been forced to improve their programs and fight for its place in the business world. Despite cloud accounting’s success though, business owners are still juggling with the concept of which software is right for their business. We delve into the two and uncover why cloud accounting software is the hottest thing for business owners right now, and why it’s the best solution for you.

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White Paper: Digital Tax Practice Cloud Hosting

digital tax practice basics to advanced for serious digital tax practitioners

                                                  - Image credit: Fast Company Digital Tax Prep Tools

A Key Component of the Digital Tax Practice is OCR

Tax preparation has come a long way since the days of service bureaus, couriers and paper forms. Personal computer-based tax software allowed tax returns to be prepared entirely in-house. Now, some tax document automation solutions are allowing firms to embrace a completely digital tax practice. Through Optical Character Recognition (OCR), source documents like W-2s, K1s and brokerage statements can be scanned and automatically bookmarked and organized. Then, the relevant tax data from those source documents can be exported to tax software.

digital tax practice sureprep white paperIf your goal is increased efficiency, the time you save with a Digital Tax Practice by not having to organize your files and key punch data into tax software is important, very important, but it isn’t the most important component of a truly automated digital tax practice. To understand the most important component, think about how and when a 1040 tax return flows through your office.

File Types and Workflow in a Digital Tax Practice

With most tax document automation solutions the process works like this: You scan the paper documents that were provided by your client then you run the scanned documents through OCR.

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Better iPad Cloud Computing with ‘C9 Mobile!’

cloud9 ipad cloud computing app download at app storeiPad Cloud Computing Just Got Better!

Cloud9 Real Time has announced the release of C9 Mobile, its new mobile app download via iTunes that delivers true iPad Cloud Computing by giving users access to all of their desktop software applications via iPad or iPad Mini. 

…… See also - iPad Your Practice for Productivity!

QuickBooks desktop using iPad cloud computing from Cloud9

C9 Mobile enables the Cloud9 platform for iPad users to easily access their hosted applications, connect with tech support, submit tickets, add users, etc.

Cloud9 Mobile App = iPad Cloud Computing

iPad Cloud Computing just got better with the release of C9 Mobile!

C9 Mobile debuted at the Sleeter Solutions 13 Conference in Las Vegas earlier this week. C9 Mobile provides iPad and iPad Mini users with access to the full desktop version of their applications while on the go.  With over 500 applications hosted and/or integrated the combinations are endless for users. iPad Cloud Computing has arrived!

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Requests for Sage Cloud Hosting Surge

Sage Cloud Hosting grows at Cloud9“With the recent surge of practice managers and business owners selecting Sage cloud hosting of Sage 50 Accounting, and other Sage applications, as their financial accounting software of choice, Cloud9 Real Time plans on enabling more cloud computing options, including more application add-ons and additional OS options for Cloud9 clients to select from.”  - Kacee Johnson Cloud9 EVP

Graph showing surge in Sage Cloud Hosting requests

The Future is Sage Cloud hosting

At Cloud9 Real Time, we are perpetually assessing data and the trending popularity of software applications that business owners and practice managers are asking to have cloud hosted on their private virtual servers. This allows Cloud9 to remain current and informed as to what our clients are seeking from their Cloud9 services plan. Sage cloud hosting is a case in point. 

Over the past 12 months, we have seen a strong surge in the popularity of Sage cloud hosting with dramatically increased requests for that accounting software suite than in any previous year.  In assessing the most recent time span from 2012 to 2013, we uncovered a 434% increase in requests for the cloud hosting of Sage 50 Accounting.

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Cloud Accounting: Pros w/ Few Cons

CPA Practice Advisor Cloud Accounting Hosting AwardMany small company owners & managers know the benefits of maintaining the business books; they also know just how time intensive it can be!

Proper bookkeeping is solely for the benefit of operating a company; it is a must for business owners to keep up to date with their P&L and revenue targets.*

Kacee Johnson Cloud9 Real TimeFrom CPA Practice Advisor by Kacee Johnson

Get the White Paper – A Specialized Cloud for Accountants

Presently there are MANY accounting software packages available off the shelf, with some being industry standards, and some being more niche specialized.  Amidst the decision-matrix there is a growing move towards selecting cloud-based accounting and virtual server software hosting, which functions and is accessed via the web. This basically means that the bookkeeping and accounting processes happen online, rather than localized to an individual PC.

Cloud Accounting Concerns

One essential concern company owners have with cloud accounting is data security. This in itself should not be an overriding concern; cloud access is only granted by permission from authorized account holders. The best cloud hosting companies invest significant capital in security and backup.  Essentially, data may actually be safer than if it was stored locally. For example, data could be lost through theft of hardware or failure when stored on an office computer or server. Such risk is minimised when data is stored in the cloud and protected by high levels of security and backup procedure.

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Comparing QuickBooks Desktop to QuickBooks Online

Comparing QuickBooks Desktop w/ QuickBooks Online

QuickBooks Hosting QuickBooks Desktop QuickBooks OnlineIntuit is really pushing its QuickBooks Online these days, but it isn’t a product that most financial pros are confident with.   

For many if not most QuickBooks professionals, using QuickBooks Desktop (for Windows, Mac is another story) for years, this is where our comfort zone is.  Intuit keeps attempting to push us out of that comfort zone.  

See also – Benefits of QuickBooks Hosting vs QBOnline

They ARE Different

According to national QuickBooks and accounting expert Charlie Russell, posting to his Sleeter Group Blog, “Usually whenever someone asks me to compare these two products my stock answer is don’t compare them, they are different products and they fit different situations.”  

“But how can we choose if we don’t compare?”  Russell in seemingly mock-contradiction explains adroitly that even though these two Intuit accounting software products share the name “QuickBooks”, they aren’t of the same genus.  QuickBooks Online is NOT a copy of QuickBooks Desktop that has been Internet-enabled. They are actually different products with different database structures and different paths to solving issues, even though both were developed in-house by Intuit

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Benefits of QuickBooks Hosting vs QuickBooks Online

9 Distinct Benefits of Quickbooks Hosting vs Quickbooks Online

learn the benefits of quickbooks hosting Cloud

1. Access to many important QuickBooks Features

Benefits often not available with QuickBooks Online Include tracking inventory, generating purchase orders, assigning multiple price levels to items, and enhanced online bill pay functionality.

See also - Good QuickBooks Hosting vs QuickBooks Online

2. Save time and money through a more efficient system

Depending upon such issues as the number of businesses owned versus the QBOL selected, the costs of Cloud9 Real Time Hosting are less. 

quickbooks online vs quickbooks cloud hosting3. Superior Functionality

Cloud9 Real Time hosting functions as if it is running on your desktop computer or laptop; the layout and user interface are the same as your desktop QuickBooks version. QBOL, conversely, has the functionality of a website mechanism.

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Managing AP & AR with Cloud Computing

BILL.com and Quickbooks Cloud Hosting sync

Bill.com is a Cash Flow Command and Control System that manages accounts payable and receivable for businesses of all sizes.

Offering online bill pay, custom invoicing services and collections, unlimited document storage, collaboration tools, and mobile access, Bill.com’s services easily syncs to users’ accounting software, QuickBooks hosting clouds and online bank accounts to better control company financials.

See also - White Paper: Next Generation AP & AR Move to Cloud

Bill.com syncs with Cloud hosted appsA big hit at this year’s CloudSummit 2012, Bill.com guards against errors and employs enterprise-class fraud protections that current desktop methods cannot match. More than 100,000 users are now paying millions of bills worth billions of dollars using Bill.com.

Small-business accounting software has greatly matured, but gaps in SMB business procedures still remain. Bill.com successfully addresses one of those gaps by expanding on the accounts payable functions of your accounting application. Bill.com can serve as a standalone application or as an integrated add-on to QuickBooks.

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CPAs Vote Cloud9 an ASP Hosting Favorite for a Second Year

2013 Readers Choice Award Cloud Accounting Hosting

Cloud9 Real Time is recognized by the annual Reader’s Choice Awards, AGAIN!

Cloud9 Real Time has been honored with a 2013 Reader’s Choice by CPA Practice Advisor readers, for favorite accounting ASP/Hosted Solution Provider. This is the second year in a row that Cloud9 has been recognized for its outstanding service, value and user experience out of dozens of ASPs and cloud solutions providers.

See also: Cloud9 #1 Cloud Provider in 2012 CPA poll

CPA Practice Advisor Cloud Accounting Hosting AwardASP (Application Service Providers) are an increasingly popular solution for accounting firms and small to medium sized businesses that need anytime, anywhere access to their applications and data. Users can login from any PC with internet connection anywhere in the world at anytime.

“Moving to the Cloud also saves businesses money by reducing the cost of IT labor hours, investment in hardware infrastructure as well as software licensing, backups and maintenance,” notes Kacee Johnson, Cloud9’s executive vice president.

“We have been very fortunate to have many accolades for our technology in the past year but the Reader’s Choice award is especially gratifying as it shows that our users’ experience is a great one, without which we would not have the great successes that we are having.”

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White Paper: Firms Harnessing the Power of Cloud Accounting

Cloud Accounting White Paper

Newly published cloud accounting white paper …

… from the AICPA and derived from recent research conducted by Silicon Valley tech consultant, author and managing director of consulting firm TCG Advisors, Geoffrey Moore, describes the impact that cloud accounting is having on client accounting services for companies of all sizes.*

*Sources: SourceMedia and BusinessWire

See also: Cloud9 Named #1 Cloud Provider by 5000 CPAs poll

Geoffrey Moore Accounting White Paper

Dr. Geoffrey Moore

Moore interviewed dozens of accounting leaders and technologists and discovered that work involving client accounting outsource – has rapidly become a cloud-accelerated field of growth for accounting firms. His findings are assembled into a new AICPA research report, titled Accounting Services: Harness the Power of the Cloud.”

Moore lays out three mega-shifts that are fueling innovation in the CPA and financial professions: transitioning from paper to digital, Internet-based solutions; practices moving from a physical to a more virtual presence; and from being a “generalist” practice to specialization in particular industry niches.

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Webinar: How the Cloud can change YOUR practice

free application hosting and office cloud computing webinars

Cloud computing is creating new openings for accounting practices and other professional practice firms

Register for WebinarWed 12-12-12 – 10AM-11AM PST

You can perform billable work quicker and with improved client communication and retention with increased data security. But transiting to Cloud-based business and maintaining confidential data accessible over the Web raises deployment and security issues that professional practice firms must assess.

Jennifer Katrulya talks cloud computing for professional practices

Jennifer Katrulya CPA & Accounting Technologist

Now you can learn from one of the accounting technology industry’s leading experts how to successfully move your firm into the cloud.

Register for WebinarWed 12-12-12 – 10AM-11AM PST

Jennifer Katrulya, CPA, is founder and CEO of Danbury, Conn.-based Business Management Resource Group, a firm that uses cloud-based accounting systems to provide outsourced accounting and advisory services to clients across the U.S. and internationally. She also educates other CPA firms in how to make the most of Cloud-based best practices. 

Ms. Katrulya’s extensive cloud-plus-accounting experience and knowledge includes advising hundreds of small and mid-sized business clients on utilizing cloud computing and cloud accounting technologies to profitably build their practices. 

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Infographic: Goodbye to Office Toolus Extinctus

Office Tools Going Extinct

>> Click for Full Graphic

A new study, survey-ed more than 7,000 professionals worldwide …

… and queried which tech and trends are likely not be seen by the year 2017. 1000s of business and practice managers agreed they could likely soon see such office tool staples  as the tape recorder, fax machine, and Rolodex at science exhibits alongside petrified wood and Brontosaurus skeletons.

According to the survey, the top ten tech and office trends soon to be going the way of the Dodo Bird are:

Dodo Bird Office tech being phased outTape recorders (79 percent), Fax machines (71 percent), Rolodexes (58 percent), Standard working hours (57 percent), Desk phones (35 percent), Desktop computers (34 percent), Formal business attire – suits, ties, pantyhose, etc. (27 per-cent), Corner offices for managers  and executives (21 percent), Cubicles (19 percent), and USB thumb drives (17 percent)

“Business pros from around the world also suggested several key dream tools they’d like to see in the future. These include having a clone or assistant to help them (25 percent), a place in the office that provides natural sunlight (25 percent), and a quiet place in their office where they’re allowed to take a nap (22 percent). In a funny twist, 19 percent of respondents said they wish they had a mute button for their coworkers so they don’t have to hear them talk.”

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2012 Tax Preparation Software Survey Highlights

2012 tax preparation software survey

2012 AICPA tax preparation software survey highlights

“Cloud Computing a growing trend”

Over 6,000 certified public accountants assessed the tax prep applications they used to prepare year 2011 tax returns, indicating what they did and did not appreciate about their tax software in a recent survey by the AICPA.

This year, the tax software survey also examined newer methods of utilizing tax software, finding that cloud computing, while not yet proliferate, is a distinct relative shift among tax return preparers.

See also:  Tax Software Hosting and Cloud Computing

Overall user bliss was close to those surveyed in 2011, with the ratings for most applications hovering near the 4.3 (out of 5) average for all tax prep softwares (in 2011, all apps also averaged 4.3). UltraTax won the overall #1 spot again this year at 4.5, narrowly besting out Lacerte (4.4)

NEW TAX PREP TECHNOLOGIES

For 2012, the survey examined respondents’ adoption of new trends in technology, such as cloud computing. Cloud computing has achieved common phenomenon status outside the field of tax prep software, both in consumer software applications and in business.

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Hosted QuickBooks: Understand Your Service Options First

Hosted QuickBooks for the Modern World of Business

award winning cloud9 hosted quickbooks software hosting21st century technology is altering the way businesses and their CPAs do accounting. The agencies that stay on the cutting edge of this trend will benefit from improved efficiency, reduced IT costs and greater flexibility. However, embracing this technology also can mean considering new business models.

Hosted QuickBooks is a simple concept

A case in point: The way hosted QuickBooks works is easy to grasp. Instead of paying a licensing fee to have software installed on your local desktop or office server, you pay a monthly service fee for a hosted QuickBooks provider to host the application remotely. You then access the hosted QuickBooks from any computer, and because your data is now as well hosted on the provider’s remote servers, anyone who uses the hosted QuickBooks system sees the data in real time.

See also: Cloud9 Nabs Top Accounting Cloud Hosting Award

Get the: Accounting Cloud White Paper

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Numbers Have Moved To The Cloud…

Together in the Cloud

- An excerpt from Robert J. Chandler’s new book Together In The Cloud, which was released earlier this year. This excerpt orginally appeared in the Feb 2012 edition of CPA Practice Advisor.

- Rob has recently been nominated for Small Business Trends’ 2012 ‘Small Business Influencer ‘ and you may vote for him HERE.  

The Benefits Of Online Client Accounting

The Cloud has changed the world of accounting. This concept is not new—it actually dates back to the early 1990s—but the biggest growth by accounting firms starting to take advantage of this online technology has been within the last few years.

Robert J. Chandler

Robert J. Chandler

Today’s technology is used by more and more accounting professionals and business owners to accomplish their tasks with far more convenience and efficiency. These new methods provide mutual benefits as owners and accountants work together in the Cloud.

While most of the advantages have been around for some time, they are now finally being utilized as they should be. Consider four unique mutual benefits of online client accounting.

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New Infographic: Assessing Cloud Accounting Applications

INFOGRAPHIC cloud-accounting-software

The ideas of cloud computing and cloud accounting are simple.

The accounting and other office applications are on the Internet, which CPA practices do not need to purchase, load, or maintain. There isn’t anyneed to hire technicians because these firms only need a broadband Web connection and a browser. Gone are the network switches, operating systems, applications, and servers at the local area. For cloud-borne operations, such things belong to the cloud, the Internet, and the cloud computing provider.

Infographic source: CloudTweaks

A CPA or other accounting firm can benefit from cloud computing in different ways. One, the overhead is quite low. System administration, upgrades, and maintenance become the responsibility of the supplier and everything happens in the cloud. Therefore, the practice need not pay a manager to monitor any software/hardware work which usually occurs during weekends or at night. For a small firm of 100 employees, cloud computing software typically costs 50% less than software installed in the firm’s premises, in a span of 4 years.

OPEN INFOGRAHIC

Remember us. Cloud9 Real Time was voted Best Accountant’s Cloud by more accounting  professionals. Get a free demo or take a 7-day test drive and discover why Cloud9 is the favorite cloud computing provider in accounting today!

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New Cloud Accounting Survey

Cloud accounting & cloud computing survey results

The new Cloud Accounting Institute (CAI) is launching its first ever survey to determine how many companies have adopted or intend to adopt cloud accounting solutions and why (or not). In addition, CAI seeks to know how many employees will engage the new cloud accounting applications and whether they are centrally located or use the application from remote locations. This time around the percentages will be the big story, but when Cloud Accounting Institute refreshes its data at the end of the year, we expect that the Institute will begin making its own predictions.

The survey aims to relate adoption decisions to company size, perceived benefits, perceived concerns, and experiences with installed software packages.

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Webinar: Private Accounting Cloud For Your Firm

What is a ‘Virtual Server for Accountants?’

Do you need a server or are tired of having to maintain a server in your office? Are you an Accountant, Bookkeeper, Tax Preparer, CPA or other accounting professional? Do you have multiple applications that you need access to and don’t want multiple ways of accessing? Do you have clients that need to access as well?

This webinar is on the Cloud9 Virtual Server for accountants solution. Learn how you can outsource your server and IT!

Stop the chaos and streamline your practice!

CLICK TO REGISTER: 11AM Weds January 11th

#1 QuickBooks Hosting SolutionVirtual Servers are the wave of the future and are a value savings alternative to traditionalal office servers. Virtual servers allow you real time access anytime, anywhere – and you can even private label your office portal for clients to login to their files!

Register now, discover what all the hubbub is about and why Cloud9 Real Time was voted #1 cloud host by a majority of accountants in the most recent Annual Readers’ Choice of CPA Practice Advisor.

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