We recently conducted a survey of our accountant and bookkeeper partners, to get some real-life insight into the logistics of moving your practice on to cloud based software. We wanted to share these experiences with you, and pass on the valuable hints and tips given by those who have successfully introduced the cloud to their clients.
Our survey started by asking Clear Books partners about their preconceptions of cloud software before using it. Many responses related to the security of online services, and we are happy to say that those surveyed have found the cloud to be incredibly safe and secure. Clear Books is backed up daily, hosted physically in a secure facility and has the same encryption level as online banking.
Introducing the cloud to clients
A common theme throughout the survey was that introducing the cloud to clients proved much less challenging than expected, and clients are generally very receptive to the idea! In fact:
71% of respondents said that introducing the concept of the cloud was easy.
NONE of the respondents said they had received any negative feedback from their clients after introducing the cloud.
One respondent gave the following insight:
“All who move to it appreciate the benefits, especially my ability to guide and support them in improving the quality & accuracy of their records”
We also asked our accountants/ bookkeepers about the methods they used to introduce the cloud to their clients, and what techniques they found useful or effective:
Many discovered that introducing the topic of the cloud in initial meetings with new clients was particularly effective, as it allows you both to start with a ‘clean slate’.
Keep things simple. A good way of introducing the concept is to give an idea of other cloud services that we all use on a day to day basis. Examples could include Gmail, Amazon, Ocado or Facebook.
Ensure you understand the benefits for the client and are ready to communicate these when you introduce the idea – key benefits include real time data, access anywhere and anytime, and the ease of collaborating with their accountant/ bookkeeper.
Some emphasised it as a ‘must-have’ service, and something that is new and exciting.
While the responses showed clients to be very open to adopting the cloud, the survey found the following client types were particularly receptive:
Proactive small businesses
Tech savvy/ web based industries
Changing the way you run your practice
Looking towards the accountant/ bookkeeper’s user experience, we received the following feedback:
86% said that using the cloud had made running their practice easier.
Being able to work with real time client data was a commonly cited plus point.
Several respondents mentioned the added flexibility it offers, due to connecting with their client data anywhere, any time.
Which software provider?
Finally, a key part of the move to the cloud is choosing the right software for you. 86% of participants said they found Clear Books Pro to be user friendly and intuitive. If you’re an accountant or bookkeeper why not sign up for a free Clear Books partner account today!