How Cloud Accounting is Changing the Way We Work

I am sure we have all heard of how the largest taxi company in the world owns no cars - Uber.

Or how the largest accommodation provider owns no properties - Airbnb.

Or how the largest marketing company writes no content - Facebook.

The world has changed. How we do business has changed. This is true for accountancy and the financial services industries.

If we think back to 10 years ago, accountants faced the problem that business owners wanted to reduce their accounting costs by installing their own accounting desktop program and doing all their own processing. They sometimes appointed qualified or unqualified bookkeepers to lessen the burden in terms of administration and workload. This presented a big problem for accountants because they got involved in a lot of fixing – correcting mistakes that people made or completing administrative tasks that they did not have time for or weren’t aware of.

Getting involved in real accounting sometimes never happened; we could not get information quickly enough and we often felt like we were playing ‘catch-up’ before we could begin to offer proper advice or reporting.

Fast forward 10 years later and we are now in the position where cloud accounting software is instantly processing transactions and can learn where transactions should be allocated, giving us real-time information to use. We can be advisors to our clients and give them information and reports that they can use when they need them. We can be the interpreters of all things financial and use our skills to improve and enhance our client’s businesses.

Is this not exactly what we wanted and needed?

There is a lot of speculation about how cloud accounting is changing the industry for the worse, but the truth is cloud accounting is here to stay. We cannot simply close our eyes and hope it will go away. We need to adapt and change with it. And nothing is all bad. Change is not easy but if we focus on the positive (and there are many positives), we will not only find our way through this but derive new skills and benefits for both business and accountancy.

The way Anlo is going to address these changes is:

  1. Fine tuning our soft skills to help our clients. Our core value is to deliver a personal service, this has been true since I founded Anlo.  Now it is even more important to use our skills and experience to make things easier for our clients, explaining to them the implications of what they are seeing in their accounting program.

  2. To become an expert in what we do. We are not simply accountants; we are accountants who have embraced these technological changes and are using them in-house and to make our clients business lives easier and more productive.

  3. To stay current with what is happening in the industry and network as much as possible with people in business, entrepreneurs and colleagues. That is how we will know what people need, what our client’s need and what our staff and colleagues need.

I am speaking at the Accounting & Finance Show in South Africa on the 6th of May at the Sandton Convention Centre on this very subject and I hope that I can inspire people and fellow accountants and bookkeepers to embrace these changes. Using technology can help improve your business and push it be more and to achieve more.  If you can come along, I would love to meet with you!

Annja Louca