Thinking about moving your accounting applications to the cloud? There are a wide variety of providers to sort through – all with differing features, applications and limitations. With a wide variety of cloud solutions to choose from, finding the best solution for your accounting firm can be a daunting process.
Here are 5 key points to consider when deciding between cloud hosting or an on-premise solution:
Do you need access to your applications from outside of your physical office? If your users all work in the same location and never need access outside of the office, an on-premises solution may work well. Alternatively, if you need to connect users in multiple locations or job sites, then working in the cloud gives you the freedom to access your services and data from anywhere, anytime.
CONTROL AT YOUR FINGERTIPS
To successfully manage your business, you need to be able to easily add, remove or change users as your business demands. One of the advantages of certain cloud providers is that you have a portal with self-service access to add or remove services on-demand 24×7. In an on-premises scenario, unless you have on-staff IT support, it may take hours or even days to make user changes with an outsourced consultant.
CAP X VS OP X
Before investing in a new capital outlay for a server and on-premises configuration it’s important to look at all the costs of both cloud or on-premise and determine which best suits your business. Hidden costs for an on-premise deployment include backups, disaster recovery, third-party licensing and maintenance or end-user support. With a cloud solution, you change the expense into an operating expense that is set each month and is a dependable cost. Depending on your requirements, most cloud hosting customers find that they save thousands of dollars over 5 years.
SUPPORT & SERVICE
It is important to have a support team that will reliably provide you with the best service and support available. An advantage to using a cloud host is the availability of a full-service support team 24 hours a day. Many providers offer SLAs to ensure that your cloud is always running with no unscheduled downtime. In contrast, on-premise solutions have limited hours of service and slower response times and restores.
You need bank-like security to protect data with automated offsite backups and disaster recovery. In addition to backups, it’s valuable to have ransomware recovery and prevention in the event of an unexpected attack and PCI compliance with SOC 2 data centers so that your data is always protected from threats. Regardless of what disaster strikes, it’s comforting to know that your data and client details are secure.
Alternatively, on-premises solutions can have insufficient security and can take up to several days to get your data restored in the event of a disaster.
When finding the best solution for hosting, you need a solution that will meet all your specific business needs and will scale with your business.
More question on the cloud? Contact us today.
About the Author
Mike Callan is a highly successful entrepreneur and business executive with more than 15 years of experience forming, growing, and running successful businesses. As CEO of Swizznet, he brought his vision of a reliable, innovative online accounting platform into reality and become one of the top tier hosts.