Businesses all around the globe are utilizing the power of cloud solutions to meet their never-ending business needs. Logic Monitor’s survey predicts that 83% of enterprise workloads will be in the cloud by 2020.
We, at Ace Cloud Hosting, reached out to an industry leader who’s bringing out a positive shift with his actions. Mike Milan is one of the highest-rated instructors in the nation on the topic of financial management for small business owners. He has built or helped build multiple companies from the ground up by transforming ideas into multi-million-dollar enterprises.
His project Clear Path To Cash is based on the belief that every business owner can fulfill their dreams by understanding and acting on the financial issues they encounter every day. Ultimately, business owners can make more money and build a lifestyle-friendly business where they get more time for themselves.
We asked him a few questions about cloud technology and how it is impacting the accounting industry. Let’s see what he has to say:
1. How would you describe the current state of cloud technology in the accounting industry?
I have seen a dramatic shift in the appetite for cloud technology over the last decade. What was once a scary experience for accountants, is now an expected work environment. We have grown to trust the security of our data and love the convenience the cloud brings.
What is exciting is the quick evolution of cloud-based applications that truly do make your life better. I believe that the state of cloud technology is maturing (and less of a ‘wild west” environment) where users are expecting products to meet their expectations.
2. What are the most common questions that clients ask about the cloud?
People are expecting their accounting software such as QuickBooks to meet their security needs on cloud, so I’m more frequently asked about cloud security practices.
Moreover, since the user’s data is in the cloud, there is a natural excitement to have a more seamless interaction with different data sources. So, people also ask about integrating the accounting software with other third-party applications.
People want to be able to combine data from different sources to get rid of the manual process of building a spreadsheet or, better yet, see data relationships that hadn’t yet been uncovered.
3. How important is third-party integration with the accounting software?
It is extremely important if you want a world-class user experience. What I mean by that is no matter how powerful accounting software is in itself, it cannot be all things to all people.
The software is great at generating reports, tracking invoices and expenses, and so much more. But, by integrating them with the best applications in each category such as CRM, payroll, time-tracking, HR, etc., you get the best experience all the way around.
In my opinion, when a software tries to do too many things, it usually delivers mediocrity. Additionally, third-party integrations allow you to build a custom solution for your client.
No business tends to operate the same, so some features may not be needed. When you have an overly robust solution, you might overwhelm the user with too many options. Integrations allow you to add the right solution at the right time, with the right client.
4. Where do you find the biggest undervalued opportunities?
I’m biased, of course, but there is still a tremendous opportunity in delivering a data analytics solution that focuses the user on just the things that matter.
Cloud accounting technology providers have done a great job of automating the most routine tasks in an accounting or bookkeeping office. In the meantime, they have accumulated a ton of data.
Very few providers are tapping into the data to uncover the issues that identify success and failure in a company. And although I’m Cash Flow Mike, your financial data only tells half of the story. You need to evaluate the real-life context around the financial data as well to excel in business.
5. What excites and interests you most about cloud technology today?
My current passion is in machine learning. It’s often coupled with artificial intelligence but doesn’t have to be.
In machine learning, you can identify data points that you want to learn more about, then apply the algorithm to look for the most likely contributing circumstances for that endpoint. It is fascinating to watch.
An example of the types of things you might discover could be that your bar owner client is 14% more profitable when they hire bands 6 times per month, versus hiring them 8 times per month.
These are the types of relationships that machine learning can help you uncover in seconds, as opposed to pouring hours into analysis of every data point.
Discovering the unknown insights in data is what really excites me at the moment.
To Wrap Up
Certainly, there’s a lot more to discover about cloud, and we’re still trying to keep up with the new-aged concepts. But, it’s better to adapt to the new technology and make the transition to cloud before it’s too late.
Do you have any more questions regarding cloud? Ask us in the comments section below.