It’s been your trusty workhorse for years and it’s probably quite intimidating to think that, at some point in the near future, you might have to replace your Finance Software and start again! But 2020 has opened everyone’s eyes into how organisations can be blind-sided, if staff can’t access to the office. Cloud-based solutions mitigate the risks associated with having to work from home; it’s a harsh reality for virtually all technologies that still reside on the local company network.
You might, however, be very pleasantly surprised at just how straightforward data migration can be. We now have clients up and running in days, not months; things have changed, meaningfully, since you implemented your last system!
Here’s a list of just 8 reasons why your current system is probably not serving you as well as it used to.
1 – Secure access from anywhere, on any platform; all you need is a browser
Working from home, as well as the office, is now an integral part of life. Server based, on-premise finance systems are not designed for remote work. VPN access not only makes every task arduous, but also introduces a number of security issues for your organisation. And, even if these hurdles are overcome, documents reside in filing cabinets that may not be accessible to your team.
Cloud accounting now facilitates an entirely flexible work regime. Security is taken care of in the form of Microsoft’s Azure platform and accessibility is a non-issue, all you need is access to a browser. Couple this ease of use with an integrated document management system and the requirement to be in the office, to access financial data or any of the associated documents, is a thing of the past.
2 – Customisable workflow and authorisation
Businesses need greater control but not if that results in micro management. Establishing the right balance to know that exceptions can be reported upon but systems can be set up to empower its users to run the company on a day to day basis. This empowers the workforce by providing parameters for them to work within. This is not something that historic on-premise legacy products could even envisage as a requirement, at the time they were written. Nowadays however, workflow and the ability to customise workflows to your specific business practices are a core part of the software. This results in the system being configured for the standard parameters and processes, and automatically reporting upon exceptions either in the real-time dashboard or by triggering an alternate authorisation process.
3 – Comprehensive, accurate and up-to-the-minute reporting
You will be familiar with viewing data through different methods; this is common-place for how systems used to operate! For example, one view in the product, another view in a report writer of some form that often requires a PhD in Astro Physics to really make it sing, and then probably an export to Excel. All of these have subtle differences in the way they are presented, couple with the nagging doubt ‘is this accurate? With iplicit, modern technology now allows it to be built with just one enquiry and one view for every single reporting tool and presentation format. The information presented is therefore always the one version of the truth, no matter how you’re interrogating it. No matter whether it’s from the Dashboard, a view in Excel or a report directly out of the product; it’s always the same.
4 – Multi-dimensional analysis
You will most likely be familiar with using Excel and it’s still a brilliant tool and has its place. However, time after time, customers express a desire to have a number of the functions of Excel but within the core product, so it’s all held and contained in the same area. Some products make an attempt to address this issue, once approach adopted is a Tree or Folder view, but this is typically very constrained and not very flexible with the most basic of drill downs; it can’t be pivoted in the way it could in Excel. Therefore, within many of the existing on-premise Finance Applications, the user is stuck with the one view, so the data can’t then be displayed by say Project or Salesperson, without exporting the information and doing a lot of extra work. One of the brilliant things about iplicit is that it has it’s own multi-dimensional reporting cube within the software! This means that you can pivot away until your heart’s content, viewing the business data from any aspect you like, all within the core system.
5 – Enhanced cash flow management
Many businesses don’t fail because they aren’t profitable, but because they don’t have sufficient control over cash collection. Credit control is understandably a difficult function. Historically this function has only had rudimental help from the on-premise finance software. That’s all changed; iplicit has a credit control module as part of its core system. Your controllers will see all aspects of control, at the touch of a button – stages of communication, dispute procedure and resolution, grace periods etc. Automation is also possible around receipts and direct payments. The system enables much time saving in processing while simultaneously highlighting the exceptions that need personal attention. In addition to the time saved collecting cash the solution also includes Cash Flow Forecasting. This clever solution enables users to set rules for different income and expenditure and then create cash projections for the coming months, once again all self-contained within the solution itself.
6 – Intelligent Bank Reconciliation
Bank reconciliation is a common challenge among legacy systems; it becomes a really time consuming and difficult task, given that the receipt of the bank statement often throws up additional charges that aren’t recorded or anomalies with the ones that are. Iplicit introduces for the first time, a level of AI (artificial intelligence)/Machine learning within this function. Bank statements can be downloaded automatically and predictive matches are sought, identified and then reconciled, saving up to 80% of your time on a monthly basis. You can also define and tweak your own set of rules and tolerances within the AI matching and even get the system to automatically create transactions in your system from the Bank Statement (such as bank charges, receipts from direct debit customers or direct debit payments to suppliers, etc.)
7 – It’s now way more than a Finance System
Many Legacy systems relied on add-ons and bolt-ons in order for the system to be comprehensive. One of the great things about the iplicit solution is that it has been designed from the ground up, to include functionality applicable for the wider business. A significant number of features are included in the core system which historically would have been an additional module or a third party. Features such as Dashboards, Expense Management, Job Costing, Document Management, Credit Control, Cash Flow Forecasting and timesheets are all part of the core structure. This not only represents fantastic cost savings but also reduces the integration headaches that historically been part of running a standard system.
8 – Always updated, always backed up.
Imagine a system that’s always on the latest version. A system where upgrades happen seamlessly without affecting your data or the running of your business. Imagine a system that’s accessible from wherever you are, and on any platform. A system with world-class data back up and disaster recovery. That is the power of the cloud and why the vast majority of businesses are moving towards it.
If you’re interested in understanding more about the power of iplicit and the ease at which you could migrate to it, please get in touch and we’ll demonstrate just how much more you can expect from the latest evolution of Accounting Software.