Cloud Accounting:  The Business Risks of Standing Still

By Cindy Brinker

October 04, 2016

Although technology is evolving rapidly, many finance organizations feel reluctant to make the needed accounting and financial management system changes.  Their unwillingness to innovate could have devastating impacts on their business.  Whether they want to keep using their old systems (i.e., QuickBooks) or avoid making a financial investment, they turn a blind eye to the fast-paced world of digital solutions and risk falling further behind. 

Waiting to make a decision on investing in cloud technology, or doing nothing, limits your ability to remain competitive in a market that is constantly changing.  If you’re struggling to keep up with current business and want to accelerate how you do business, then it's time to rethink your current systems and consider what is possible with cloud accounting  solutions.  As you learn the three most likely risks of standing still, you will see why so many business leaders are making the cloud decision to upgrade from QuickBooks or another legacy system. 

Risk No. 1 Reduced Effectiveness of Finance

We are certain that we know what we need to accomplish. We are becoming less certain about our abilities to accomplish those things with yesterday’s tools and technologies, said the chief financial officer of a lucrative software development company. Although the tools of the past might work to an extent, they cannot always do so in an effective manner in today’s competitive world.

Time is a valuable asset, and wasting time causes any business to experience decreased profitability.  Increased efficiency and productivity and access to real-time financial results are what you can expect from using the latest cloud accounting solutions.  More data is coming in from various sources and the automation of time-consuming tasks can be done with today’s cloud accounting solutions.  Making the upgrade allows you to focus on strategic goals and reduce the gap between the core priorities of finance and their ability to achieve those priorities as shown in Figure 1.

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Risk No. 2: Limited Abilities of Finance

In the past, the accounting and finance department typically had to focus on keeping track of the company’s financials and being the guardian of the financial health of the business.  As we move into an increasingly complex business world, the demands and expectations of the CFO and finance are growing and evolving to an increasingly value-adding strategic focus.  Businesses that don't take advantage of the latest cloud technology advances can no longer support the top priorities of finance, which their existing systems were not designed to support.

Without cloud accounting software, accountants do not have access to the tools they need to work productively.  They are forced to do more with less and performance is impacted in a negative way.  Any company that wants to capitalize on the best possible results must provide their finance team with the latest technology to reduce the risk of disengaging finance as partners in strategic and operational areas of the business.

Risk No. 3: Impaired Digital Success

As more companies innovate with cloud technology and shift toward a “digital business”, they are creating competitive advantage and driving growth.  However, to achieve those results, you need a finance organization that supports cloud technology initiatives.  Recent research from Saugatuck Technology, an ISG business, indicated that businesses see finance as inhibiting the adoption and implementation of digital initiatives.  The primary gap in achieving success of their digital initiatives was the business leaders’ inability to access real-time financial data for analysis and effective management.

Final Thoughts

Although business leaders have various reasons for not making the cloud decision, there are dangerous risks for taking no action or making no decision.  Standing still permits business leaders and finance to be ineffective and enable failure in the areas of competition, compliance, opportunities and more.  Are you ready to upgrade from QuickBooks and innovate and adopt new best practices with cloud technology, and take your business to the next level?

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About Cindy Brinker
Cindy Brinker, founder & CEO of Brinker+Co, is a leading provider of cloud-based accounting and financial management solutions. Headquartered at The InNEVation Center in Las Vegas, Nevada, Brinker+Co is strategically leveraging Intacct’s Cloud ERP solution to drive significant value and greater agility and scalability for growing companies. For more information, please visit brinkerco.comLinkedInFacebook, Google+ or Twitter.


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