Small business owners don’t have much spare time, if they even have any at all. A large portion of their “down-time” will likely be spent on accounting and balancing the books, and rightly so. No one has achieved wealth and success without these critical elements but it’s also crucial for you to work on building your business and not just on running it.
Here at Mentor Mania, I recommend that my clients have a rule of spending a minimum of four hours a week working on building their business as opposed to working in it.
The key to creating more time is leverage. Reduce the investment of time to increase the power of multiplied time. To achieve this, at least from an accounting perspective, you might want to consider moving to Cloud Accounting.
Cloud Accounting is essentially “online accounting” and falls into the same category as cloud computing or what your Smartphone operating system backs up to. The cloud is a platform that makes data and software accessible online at anytime, from anywhere and from any device. Your hard drive is no longer the central hub.
The difference between cloud accounting and traditional accounting is that the latter requires that you purchase and install software on your computer to store data on your hard drive. You can only access the program on the main device into which you installed the software which would make it logistically difficult for someone like your manager to access the accounts if she isn’t in your office. You also need to take security into consideration. How secure is your computer from hackers? How up to date is your anti-virus program?
Cloud accounting, on the other hand, is completely digital. After an initial software download, you’re ready to start inputing. Cloud accounting stores all business accounting data in the “cloud”, or on a remote and secure third party server. Think about it in the same light as internet banking. Every time you access this data, you’re using the cloud. Many modern small businesses already use the cloud for their POS, payroll, rostering and banking so now you can add your accounting and bookkeeping to that list too.
The major benefit to cloud accounting is the immediate access to software updates, quick bug-fixes and most of all, tight security. In addition to that, you’ll easily be able to view your cash flow, pay and send invoices in real time and track your money as you go. Now that is the real kicker – to see your cash flow in real time.
I was spending several hours each week working on my business accounting and being consumed with payroll, super contributions, tax, and invoice processing. While it was necessary, it also meant I had less time to spend on actually growing my business.
I couldn’t explore new ideas, meet new contacts or try new products because at the end of each working week, I had nothing left be it physically nor emotionally. After switching to a cloud accounting platform, I had more time to invest in marketing my business, the freedom to employ an extra staff member to promote business development and the energy to reach into a new business sector.
Previously the accounting could only be done by me, sitting in my office from 9-5pm in order to catch the banks. Cloud accounting allows my staff to update the ledger without me having to be in the office and enables my husband to pay my invoices at midnight when our child refuses to sleep.
If you’re constantly bogged down by paperwork and don’t have enough time to grow your business then you should consider switching to cloud accounting. It’s a decision that will greatly boost your business.
Has cloud accounting changed the way you work? Tell us how in the comments section below!