If you start a discussion with a group of accountants/bookkeepers regarding the various ways you can share/access a client’s financials, you will immediately begin to experience some very impassioned explanations why one alternative is better than another.
This is validated on a regular basis throughout the viral community whenever someone brings up the discussion regarding QuickBooks Online in comparison to QuickBooks desktop. You are, for the most part, guaranteed to have a lengthy number of comments/replies with people explaining their reasons for using one option over another.
Here’s the good news, you do still have choice! If you are one of the many people that just simply don’t want to move their accounting completely to the cloud, you are not alone.
This five-part series is designed to speak to the group that, for whatever reason, does not want to move to a cloud-based solution, but are looking for the reassurance that they are not “close minded” or “behind the times.”
Part One: “I Like the Functions/Features/Performance of My Current Desktop Software”
There are various reasons why a user prefers particular software and tends to do all they can to keep the consistency of utilizing a familiar desktop program.
1. Cloud Software Never Looks/Works the Same as the Desktop Version
If you are a user that does a direct comparison between your desktop software and the most comparable online version expecting to find an exact match, you will inevitably be disappointed.
Website programming is not the same as it is for desktop software and there will always be differences in the overall appearance.
Additionally, not all functionalities can be included in a web based version of a program so some features may be left out entirely or accessed through different menus. These differences can often be significant to a user when their primary objective is to work as efficiently as possible without having to “adapt” to a different interface or surrender crucial features that save time.
2. Cloud-Hosted Options Can Sometimes Be Subject to Performance Issues
In comparing a cloud-hosted solution to a desktop application, many users become concerned about performance issues related to the internet. Keep in mind, when you are working entirely in the cloud you are accessing your data and the program itself through a web browser that is relying on your internet connection to perform any and all tasks.
For many people with marginal internet, this creates an issue that can dramatically increase the amount of time needed to complete basic tasks. Additionally, this creates a situation where the user has no access whatsoever to their financial data should the internet be down for a period of time.
Even with favorable internet speeds, a user is still subject to the performance of their hosting companies’ servers. Although reliability has dramatically improved over the past 3-5 years and some companies have a much better consistency record in avoiding downtime, there is a possibility that a user will be affected by server performance issues at some time. As previously mentioned, when utilizing a cloud-based hosting company, if their servers are down, you are not able to work.
If you are a user that likes the look/feel of their desktop software such as QuickBooks and would prefer to keep the performance of a locally hosted program and file, you are not alone. So the question then becomes, is there a way to integrate the cloud as a resource without having to change the way you do business?
Chris Wise is Director of Sales and Marketing of Coral Tree and integral in the successful growth of their flagship product, Qbox. Prior to joining Coral Tree, Chris worked for the past 18 years in the insurance industry specializing in employee benefits. Chris has participated in the founding of three successful agencies in addition to being a...