In 2009, we were first introduced to cloud accounting, which was web browser accounting software like Xero. We really like it and strongly believe that it will be the future! 10 years into this technology and changes, we think Cloud accounting might not be the future anymore, even though there are still businesses and accountants who are still scare away from the Clouds.
So what should be the next?
We predict the future of accounting software in general to be more decentralised. Each business, each user will be using very different software. Accounting functions also will be varied in different area of business.
We think that cloud accounting will actually disappear in SMEs. The SMEs would be able to employ simpler business applications to manage some parts of their accounting function. The applications would be able to process financial data for management and compliance purposes.
Let’s pick an example of a coffee shop business:
Jane is a coffee shop owner. She is using multiple business applications to auto-feed her financial data into accounting software. It could be Xero or Intuit QuickBooks.
In the future, Jane might not need a cloud accounting software to manage all complicated accounting transactions since her business applications could be able to do just what Xero or Intuit QuickBooks is capable for.
Point of Sales (POS) application should be good enough to produce a comprehensive sale reports for Jane to keep track of her financial sale performance. POS could also be able to integrate to the ATO database so ATO could collect GST and tax information instantly.
HR application could be able to handle all core payroll function from on boarding, timesheet, rostering, leave, payroll, payment summaries, and superannuation to reporting to the ATO. There might not be a need for Jane to integrate from HR to any accounting system. The list then goes on to all other areas of their business: Bill management; Inventory; Asset management…
What about bigger guys in town?