Should Your Accounting Firm Be In The Cloud?
Are you dragging your feet when it comes to the cloud? Is it the idea of migrating that’s making you second guess whether the cloud is actually worth the trouble?
Since its introduction to the business world, the cloud has established itself as one of the most integral technologies in modern society. In the private and professional worlds, the cloud has delivered a range of benefits, from convenient access to data to cost-savings in hardware reduction.
That said, a lot of accounting firms are hesitant to undergo migration…
What Is Cloud Migration?
Migration is the process of moving some or all of your data and applications into the cloud (that is, to a data center or a cloud-based infrastructure provided by a cloud service provider such as Amazon Web Services, Microsoft Azure, or Google Cloud). You can choose to move some of your applications, or your total organizational infrastructure where all of your computing, software, storage, and platform services are transferred to the cloud for any time, anywhere access.
Cloud migration helps you achieve real-time and updated performance and efficiency. However, a cloud migration requires careful planning and implementation to ensure the cloud solution is compatible with your organizational requirements.
Why Would You Be Hesitant To Migrate Your Firm To The Cloud?
There are any number of concerns related to cloud migration…
During the transition, you could lose some key files for good with no backup or redundancies to replace it.
The migration, already expensive, takes longer than you expected and adds what you thought was avoidable downtime to your staff’s work life.
Once it finally gets installed and launched, you find out the platform is overly complicated and difficult to learn, leading to more downtime for your staff.
Does that mean you should forget about the cloud and what it could do for you?
Of course not.
Why Should You Be Using The Cloud?
For the same reasons that thousands of other firms like yours around the world have already adopted cloud computing:
- Computing Power: The cloud has the ability to activate tens of thousands of CPUs. This unparalleled power can quickly perform deep analytics of your data, and process nearly any ad-hoc queries that you require.
- Reliable Costs: The cloud services subscription model offers the strategic advantage of low-cost, low-risk opt-in combined with a simple, predictable monthly fee.
- Easy Scalability: Cloud services have the unique strategic characteristic of being able to stretch or shrink to suit your current level of demand. This is especially useful for businesses of scale or companies that go through seasons of activity.
- Real-Time Collaboration: With cloud technology, your staff doesn’t have to wait for each other to be done with their part of the document or project in order to tackle their own aspect. They can all work on the same project at the same time to maximize productivity.
- Remote Work Capability: This cloud feature allows you and your employees to work remotely as need be, which will give your business members the flexibility they desire to have a more balanced home/work life.
5 Steps For A Painless Cloud Migration
- Evaluate your infrastructure: Do you plan on moving completely to the cloud, or maintaining a hybrid environment? Some businesses don’t bother to migrate all their server-side architecture to the cloud – regardless of whether you do or not, you have to take stock of your servers, and associated software, to ensure it is all compatible with the new cloud environment you are planning.
- Plan carefully: Be sure to specifically lay out how you plan to virtualize your back end. This will largely depend on your size…
- Small firms: It would make sense to leave certain aspects like email and apps on-site, especially if they don’t require too much storage.
- Larger firms: For your line of business apps and dozens of accounts associated with your email client, you can likely afford the cloud storage needed to host these aspects offsite.
- Determine your budget before – not after: The best way to figure out which cloud service you want to go with is to know how much you can spend. The price tag will help you sort out options. And don’t worry, a small budget won’t limit your options too much. A key benefit of the cloud is its scalability. In most cases, you can start small on a great cloud service, and scale up and pay more later as you need it. Be sure to keep this scalability in mind from the start – do you anticipate needing to scale up by a considerable degree, within a year at the soonest? Make sure your cloud service of choice can handle where your firm will be in five years.
- Will you be secure? Depending on the industry in which you operate, you may have more pressing security concerns than other businesses. In order to maintain data security, or even to comply with certain regulations, you may need to keep some of your data on site. Keep this priority in mind when determining whether you need a hybrid cloud environment or not. With a combination of onsite storage for secure data and a cloud platform for everything else, you can get the best of both worlds.
- Do you need help? Lastly, before you start, you should figure out if you can handle the migration on your own. There’s no shame in needing help. Especially when it’s a matter of migrating all your apps, data and other IT assets to a totally new environment. However, if you have the time, knowledge and skills to handle it on your own, that will certainly be more cost-effective. But don’t forget – better safe (and a little more expensive) than sorry.
The HelpDesk Makes Cloud Migration Easy For Accountants
Allow The HelpDesk to help you manage the migration process.
As your cloud partner, we’ll help you evaluate cloud solutions, find the right one, and seamlessly migrate to it.
- The HelpDesk will work with you to assess, design, implement and support cloud computing while reducing IT capital costs and increasing employee productivity.
- We define business and technology requirements before recommending a cloud strategy. Our team will work with business and technology leaders to help compare costs over time and determine what role cloud computing should play in your business plans.
- We assess the business value and business impact before presenting you with a customized cloud strategy. As part of this assessment, we will make sound recommendations on public, private or hybrid cloud environments that are the best fit for your business.
To get started, all you have to do is get in touch with our team.