Much of my accounting background has been very “old-school”. I always worked in an office, in a traditional accounting framework. Everyone worked in a single desktop software system, and you worked in the same office.I figured that doing accounting remotely wasn’t in my future.
I was happily mistaken. This month officially marks my first year working as a cloud-based bookkeeper. I went from a 20-minute commute on icy snow-covered roads to a 5-second walk from my bedroom to my office. It’s been wonderful!
It leads to the question: How has the accounting ecosystem improved from cubicle life to work-from-home life?
Technology has changed the game
Technology has fundamentally changed the accounting profession. Virtual accounting and bookkeeping firms exist with employees working from anywhere in the world.
In addition to offering advisory services, cloud-based accountants and bookkeepers are expected to be extremely tech-literate. We have to be knowledgeable about various software applications and how they perform the same functions handled by a full in-house accounting department.
At Beyond, we use both Xero & QuickBooks Online (QBO). Both are excellent cloud-based platforms that allow small business owners to access their accounting data 24/7/365, on any device.
Instead of being stuck in an office, we can focus on customer relationships, innovation, and scalability. It’s a beautiful thing.
Ecosystems resolve pain points
I recently read an accounting blog about workflow that contained a very helpful piece of advice: “Never push an automatic task to a human being. It’s not a nice thing to do… it’s not cost-effective, and you open your system up to human errors”.
And it’s true. Small businesses have greater success when you can create cloud-based services that solve major pain points and do so with accuracy.
Rather than using a person to handle a time-consuming and mindless process, we need to create ecosystems that automate tasks wherever possible.
Let me give you some examples:
- Is your pain point paying bills? An app like Bill.com can automate bill payment. You can upload bills remotely and set up an approval process that alerts different people in your organization.
- Are you a traveling consultant that needs to track credit card receipts? Dext helps to track and organize receipts for travel, subscriptions, and restaurants simply by taking a photo on your phone.
Ecosystems are here to stay
Ecosystems will always be necessary with accounting. You have to bring in a number of moving parts to create a whole. With the cloud, this can be done better than ever before, even if you’re an accountant working from a home office in your pajamas.
Are you looking for help in building an ecosystem that connects all of your cloud-based apps? Learn about our services to help clients build an ecosystem that works.