“Cloud” computing simply means that software and data files are accessible through an internet connection as opposed to local networks or stand-alone computers. The beauty of such a system of course is that it does not matter where you are on the planet. As long as you can sign on to the internet, you can work from any location you choose. It also means that your co-workers or support professionals can also log in and work with you regardless of where they are located.
There is more than one way of accessing software and data via the internet. More and more software houses are creating online versions which liberate subscribers from having to buy and download updates. Microsoft Online, for example, or Quickbooks Online. These are not sold as single downloads but are based on a period subscription and all updates and upgrades are automatic. For relatively simple processes like spreadsheets and word processors, this approach works very well. However, in the case of more complex software like accounting packages, the online versions of the software are not yet comparable in terms of functionality and are not yet ready for all situations.
For most accounting clients, the best alternative is a hosting solution. We offer a secure and efficient service through our hosting partners www.novelaspect.com . Hosting offers all the advantages of online software – global accessibility, security and backup without the disadvantage of changing to a software that is only partially functional.
However, the disadvantage of third party hosting is that it can be costly especially if there are multiple simultaneous users. For organizations with their own internal networks using a dedicated network administrator, remote access systems like Terminal Services may be a better solution.
There are also free third party access softwares like Team Viewer and Log Me In available for smaller businesses where the hosting cost may be an issue.
The bottom line is that any business that wants to can have access to a cloud solution. Contact us, and we’ll find the best one for you.