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Cloud accounting and business advice lead to success

Two years ago, cloud accounting was still very new to many accountants and most didn’t even know that it existed.

As an early adopter of new technology and systems, Amanda Fisher of Connected Accountants was trialling the cloud accounting system, Xero, with a few clients.

One of those was a client in the fitness industry with personal training sessions, some classes and a small suburban gym facility. The business had been operating for a year or so and was struggling.  The owner was keen to get a better understanding of the figures and to turn the business around so as to receive a positive return on the investment.

After the Xero file had been established Connected Accountants provided one-on-one training to the owner. This training was formalized into a half day training course which is run by Cloud Accounting Training Solutions.

The second step was to establish goals for the business for the ensuing financial year. These were loaded into the Xero file to enable regular reporting to the owner comparing actual trading results with the budget.

Monthly reporting and regular meetings followed during which numerous business decisions were discussed both large and small. These decisions ranged from whether to undertake specific marketing activity to whether to employ managers to run the day-to-day business and undertake some of the training.

Two years on and the business is thriving.

Xero helped transform this business due to the following:

1. Available anytime, anywhere with internet access including mobile apps

The owner has recently taken on other work and is no longer actively in the business. However, with internet access, the owner is able to check the financial details of the business at any time including when travelling overseas.

2. No upfront costs, no installation or IT expertise required

Although many people are computer savvy, installation of software is becoming old-fashioned. Most computer systems now are apps or internet based which require nothing more than a quick signing up procedure. For the owner of this business, paying a small monthly fee for access to Xero far outweighed having to pay a lump sum for accounting software as cashflow when the business was struggling in the early days was extremely tight.

3. Security of data

For the owner of the gym, knowing that the data was safely secured in the cloud provided peace of mind that the information was safe and secure. No need to worry about anyone stealing the computer or the hard disk becoming corrupted.

4. Integration with banks for daily data feeds and time savings

One of the biggest benefits for business owners is the massive time-savings provided by the daily bank data feed integration. No more typing in all the details of every bank transaction. Often with just one click a bank entry is in the system and reconciled. For the gym owner, this alone saved hours a week and freed up time for the family and other pursuits.

5. Dashboard reports

The one page business figures at a glance report allowed the owner to quickly see how the business was progressing. With specific key figures prominently included on the dashboard, the owner has been able to keep an eye on how these figures are progressing during the course of each month to ensure that the business stays on target.

6. Integration with other business systems

In this case, the owner has chosen not to integrate with other systems to date. However, logical integrations include a booking system for the personal training sessions, and a CRM system. Xero allows many systems to integrate with it to eliminate the need for duplication of data.

7. Real time collaboration with advisors

Without this, the owner is sure that the business would not have achieved the results they have so far. The value for the owner of being able to look at the business figures and phone for support and business advice is priceless.

To find out more about how Xero could help you transform your business:

  1. Attend the Benefits of Cloud Accounting with Xero Demo Seminar on 17 July 2013 or 21 August 2013 at Chatswood, NSW. Click here for more information
  2. Attend the 7 Benefits of Cloud Accounting webinar on 6 August 2013. Click here for more information
  3. Attend a Xero Training Course on 13 August 2013 or 10 September 2013. Click here for more information
  4. Purchase Amanda Fisher’s book, Connected Technology – How to  Transform  Your Business with Cloud Accounting. Purchase here
  5. If you are ready to proceed, email amanda@connectedaccountants.com.au

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Staff Writer

Staff Writer

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