Believe it or not, tax season will be here before you know it; where you will most likely have a need for temporary staffing and temporary computing equipment. This lull time is the absolute perfect time to think differently about your needs and allocate enough budget dollars toward productive and viable solutions.
Here are three focus areas I recommend you concentrate on for the next two months.
If your firm is not on the cloud, this is the perfect time to test it out. Because accountants deal with sensitive data that is only viewed and submitted to tax authorities on a need to know basis, I do not recommend public cloud formats such as Google Drive or Dropbox.
A private cloud that encrypts your files and partitions the server just for your business is in the bests interest of your clients and the firm. There are many solutions out there but three that come to mind are Microsoft Cloud, Rackspace and Amazon Virtual Private Cloud.
In addition, look toward apps that are cloud based, such as QuickBooks Online.
Remember, the benefits of cloud computing far outweigh any risks. Your data is automatically saved and backed up. Only those with authorization can access the data. The files can be viewed and/or edited from any device, anywhere and at any time if the device is connected to the Wi-Fi.
If you have file cabinets of paper, now is the time rent shredders, scanners and laptops to get all that old paperwork out of your office. If the data is old and useless, shred it. If it is important and sensitive, scan it, upload the documents to the cloud or a document library system and then shred it. You may need to rent additional computers to handle the scanning, shredding and uploading. If things are slow in November and December, dedicate staff time for this initiative.
When going paperless, be sure to evaluate and consider an E-Signature tool such as RightSignature or DocuSign. This will save your clients both money and time, as they can sign the documents from any device and get them back to you within moments. And it will save you on paper generation and possibility of exposing their sensitive data to identify thieves if their documents are ever lost or stolen.
Once complete, make sure you are generating little to no paper including expenses and invoices. According to IDC, processing of expense claims is improved by 70% and invoices by 85%, just by going paperless.
Update Your Computer Operations
If you haven’t upgraded your software in a long time or if you need to automate manual procedures, now is a perfect time to interview vendors, test out software solutions and try out different computer solutions. You can set up a learning lounge for technology and get iPad rentals, tablets, laptops and desktop rentals to determine which hardware/software combination works best for your accounting firm.
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We have all the rental products you need! Call us at 800.736.8772 or text 908.485.7368 and let one of our educated and experienced professionals recommend the right solution for your organization! Please visit our website for more information.