When you think about the benefits of cloud software, you probably think about anytime/anywhere access and remote work opportunities. But one of the top benefits of cloud software has nothing to do with how or where your staff uses it. In fact, many firms choose cloud software because it’s the most low-maintenance option. Recently, Lisa Johnson of Akin, Doherty, Klein & Feuge (ADKF) CPAs spoke to us about why the firm moved to the cloud. A new case study about the firm outlines how a cloud-based system helped save the firm time. Let’s take a look at some of the highlights.
Simplify your in-house infrastructure
Many firms first make their move to the cloud when an in-house server has reached the end of its life. Instead of spending thousands of dollars on a server that will require monitoring and maintenance, the low-maintenance alternative is to switch to the cloud. In the cloud, your software vendors manage the server that the software runs on, leaving you more time to focus on your work. In addition, a digital, cloud-based system can eliminate or reduce the need for other in-house infrastructures, like filing cabinets and printers.
For a multi-office firm like AKDF, moving to the cloud makes it easier to share files and information. “Having all of the documents in the digital process allows us less time shuffling through paper, less time looking for files when a client comes in,” explains Johnson. “That in and of itself has helped a lot.”
Forget about software updates
Software updates can be inconvenient and frustrating. However, NOT installing software updates can create other, more serious problems. Firms that use cloud software always know they are using the most up to date version of the software. And any components that need to be installed on a computer locally can be set up to update automatically. That means less down-time and less reliance on outside IT resources. “CCH Axcess is pretty self-sufficient,” says Johnson. “With it doing all of its own updates, all we do is monitor and make sure the staff is still able to connect. Other than that, the product pretty much maintains itself, which is really helpful.”
Minimize data management
Having good data is vital to an efficient system. But keeping your data clean can be a hassle. That’s why firms often prefer to minimize the number of different databases housing their data. Using a centralized database prevents duplicate or conflicting data. It can also save time on data entry. Johnson explains, “CCH Axcess streamlines a lot of the processes because all of the solutions use one database. You don’t have to maintain different databases.”
To find out more about how ADKF implemented a low-maintenance, cloud-based system in their firm, read the case study: Large, Multi-Location Firm Gains New Visibility with Tax Solutions from Wolters Kluwer.