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Post Info TOPIC: Cloud accounting


Master Book-keeper

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Cloud accounting


A discussion more than a question.

I've just taken on a Ltd Co who are using Xero and although initially I thought it was just going to be year end accounts, it turns out it's the bookkeeping as well

For some reason the previous accountant  stuck them on xero, and although they'll be doing the invoicing straight into that, the purchase ledger will be down to me.  So not only is the client paying £360 a year for the software, they're also paying to have the bookkeeping done as well.  My jaw dropped open when the they told me how much they were paying previously (unfortunately after I quoted lol)

They're happy for me to use whatever software I think best and I've said I'll get the xero up to date (it's way behind and unreconciled) (1) and then take it from there.

If I was to have anybody on a cloud package they would be on it because they're doing the bookkeeping, I wouldn't dream of letting someone pay £20-£30 a month and then me do the bookkeeping, unless they specifically requested it.  Am I old fashioned?

 

(1) There is a dispute over fees, so that may well have some bearing on the work not being done. I was aware of that before taking the client on.



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John 

 

 

 Any advice given is for general guidance and professional advice should be sought applicable to your circumstances.



Expert

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I generally adopt a "what the client wants" approach - so if they want to run with a cloud package, that's up to them. However, in the situation you describe, I'd be inclined to suggest to them to use an alternative method because, as you say, the supposed benefit of using a cloud package is both you and they being able to use it. (Technically, they are - but in a limited way).

On the other hand, there is a huge problem with clients getting involved with the bookkeeping - which is clients, who may not really understand what they're doing, getting involved with the bookkeeping.

That same supposed benefit is also a pitfall, because most of the time, while the business owners and staff might be okay with basic stuff, they're going to stumble on some things, and will get stuff wrong. Given that one of the reasons the client is doing some of the work is often to reduce what they pay for the bookkeeping service, you can't spend looking over what they've done - they don't want to pay you to do that - so the only times their mistakes become apparent is when they affect something else that you're doing, or when their mistake causes them problems and they come running to you to fix it.

So, no, you aren't being old fashioned - you're looking at it sensibly and pragmatically.

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Vince M Hudd - Soft Rock Software

(I only came here looking for fellow apiarists...)



Veteran Member

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I agree, if the customer wants you to carry on with their software and is happy to pay both cloud subscription and your cost, go with it. A reluctant Xero user, I tried to get a new customer to change but had to give in. They are happy to deal solely with invoicing and leave purchase, bank and VAT returns etc., to me. I had two long standing customers decide to go it alone as they thought using Quickbooks would do it all. Both have come back to me in recent months after realising invoicing is only a small part of bookkeeping. I am getting very good at untangling errors, in an odd way, this makes bookkeeping more interesting. For me, the experience of using different cloud packages is invaluable. Also, with the launch of MTD next April, I can see a few more business struggling to take care of their own bookkeeping and needed our services.

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Veteran Member

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I also go with the flow and nearly every cloud client I take on is in a pickle so you do start to become a bit of an all-rounder. I'm a fan of VT and for any client who wants to go with, or change an online software option I suggest Quickfile (via my Affinity account). The reporting isn't as good as some of the others, but for most it is fine and much cheaper for the client also.

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Mike



Master Book-keeper

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Thanks Vince, it does seem that people get shoved onto a cloud accounting package despite having Ltd knowledge of bookkeeping, and my intention when I do have cloud clients (no, not angels lol) is to have a skeg through their accounts once a month just to look for any potential errors. It's something I'd have to do at the end of the year anyway if I was doing their annual return. If I can spot issues early on I can correct them and train the client going forward.

Hi Julie, I agree with your comments and I see myself in a similar role.  Just one quick correction, It's only the VAT element that comes under MTD next April, MTD itself will be 2020 at the very earliest.

Hi Mike, I'm a die hard VT fan but have no issues with using cloud software. This will be my first experience of using it properly and I'll make a decision once it's up to date.  Given that she's only using it to do invoices I may well look at moving her onto VT together with aninvoicing program, or possibly a no expense cloud offering, as paying £30 a month is overkill imo.  I've dabbled with Quickfile but it's a few years ago now.  Have you looked at Pandle, it looks quite interesting and I intend having a play with it over the next few months.

 



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John 

 

 

 Any advice given is for general guidance and professional advice should be sought applicable to your circumstances.



Master Book-keeper

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Its the likes of the QB online advert (along with the receipt capture ones) that make folk think that its easy to do their own bookkeeping because all you have to do is upload all this 'stuff' and the software does the rest. Including, according to some of the adverts, actually send your tax return (or CT) to HMRC. Of course that all magically happens and there is absolutely no need for any adjustments to the figures before such needs to be sent, so what on earth do bookkeepers and Accountants do all day.

Many business owners just bimble along on this basis and will continue to do so until they get caught. Some realise that it isnt actually that easy. The rest as the other say, get in a mess and then call in the cavalry.

I do also think that most folk thing £20/£30 a month or so is nothing to pay, because they do not make the link between that and the overall annual cost (ad infinitum). A bit like folk who go on such programmes as 'Eat Well for Less'. Have you ever watched it? Dreadful programme, but I admit to watching one (I was studying at the same time so in truth I had just left the telly on in the background). Well you should watch it just for a laugh and I will hazard a guess that you will be screaming at the telly in shock and awe at how people can be such morons - how can they not have figured out for themselves that by not going to the takeaway shop 6 nights a week they can save themselves a fortune?!!! I made an ex colleague of mine, who drove me nuts constantly whining about how he always ends up having no money at the end of every month, add up how much he was spending on coffees and lunches which was at least £50 a week about 15 years ago!

Anyway as the others have said and Ive said before Im happy to let my clients use whatever they want. Unless that software drives me so nuts that its restricting what I need to do. Or if I think I can save them by moving on to something that I can use that is quicker and so saves in other ways (my cost).




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Joanne  

 

Winner - Bookkeeper of the Year 2015, 2016 and 2017

Thoughts are my own/not to be regarded as official advice,which should be sought from a suitably qualified Accountant.

 



Expert

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"along with the receipt capture ones"

There was an advert for one of those playing on the radio a while back (probably a year or two now) that I found a particularly galling example. As I recall, its focus was on expense claims more than anything else - so the advert was saying "just scan your receipt for this, and have it automatically appear on your expense claim" for each of a number of examples.

The last of those examples was something bought on your company card - and it specifically said it would appear on your expenses claim.

So to me it sounded like it would help you commit fraud by claiming back something as an expense that the company was paying for anyway.

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Vince M Hudd - Soft Rock Software

(I only came here looking for fellow apiarists...)



Veteran Member

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Leger wrote:

Thanks Vince, it does seem that people get shoved onto a cloud accounting package despite having Ltd knowledge of bookkeeping, and my intention when I do have cloud clients (no, not angels lol) is to have a skeg through their accounts once a month just to look for any potential errors. It's something I'd have to do at the end of the year anyway if I was doing their annual return. If I can spot issues early on I can correct them and train the client going forward.

Hi Julie, I agree with your comments and I see myself in a similar role.  Just one quick correction, It's only the VAT element that comes under MTD next April, MTD itself will be 2020 at the very earliest.

Hi Mike, I'm a die hard VT fan but have no issues with using cloud software. This will be my first experience of using it properly and I'll make a decision once it's up to date.  Given that she's only using it to do invoices I may well look at moving her onto VT together with aninvoicing program, or possibly a no expense cloud offering, as paying £30 a month is overkill imo.  I've dabbled with Quickfile but it's a few years ago now.  Have you looked at Pandle, it looks quite interesting and I intend having a play with it over the next few months.

 


Hi Vince

Never heard of Pandle, there's soo many out there now! Good luck with the Xero mission.



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Mike



Master Book-keeper

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Juliaarora2018 wrote:

Cloud accounting really helping CPA, accountant and business owner to make their accounting workflow efficient and productive.


 Spammy link in signature!     (MR Moderator)

 

If you are going to add something at least make it meaningful / useful

 

You are on the wrong side of the pond, this is a UK site.



-- Edited by Cheshire on Tuesday 21st of August 2018 10:18:09 AM

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Joanne  

 

Winner - Bookkeeper of the Year 2015, 2016 and 2017

Thoughts are my own/not to be regarded as official advice,which should be sought from a suitably qualified Accountant.

 



Master Book-keeper

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Juliaarora2018 wrote:

Cloud accounting really helping CPA, accountant and business owner to make their accounting workflow efficient and productive.


 Julia says so - so it must be true.   I say the earth is a triangle - so that must be true as well.

 

 



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Joanne  

 

Winner - Bookkeeper of the Year 2015, 2016 and 2017

Thoughts are my own/not to be regarded as official advice,which should be sought from a suitably qualified Accountant.

 



Senior Member

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I started a new company last year and have put everyone on QB Online or Xero. I was doubtful about the subscription costs at first but no one has complained. And actually because of how much I can automate with the bank feed and bank rules I'm saving them more than the subscription costs in bookkeeping time each month. Add AutoEntry to that and it's a bargain! With MTD on the horizon more and more people will have to switch. I was not a fan a year ago but now I'm loving QuickBooks Online. It's actually a lot of fun!

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Master Book-keeper

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Princess wrote:

With MTD on the horizon more and more people will have to switch. 


Absolute tosh. Sorry to be blunt, but that is just not true. You do not need to go to cloud software to be digitally compliant under MTD.

 

You can run bank feeds on desktop software as well but that another issue.

 

 



__________________

Joanne  

 

Winner - Bookkeeper of the Year 2015, 2016 and 2017

Thoughts are my own/not to be regarded as official advice,which should be sought from a suitably qualified Accountant.

 

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