So the whole cloud thing is overplayed but it's pretty clear it is making it's place in the craft brewery and craft food world. What I want to specifically talk about are 3 main benefits of using online accounting systems.
First, what are online accounting systems? They are any accounting system (bookkeeping systems, inventory tracking, POS, etc.) that stores your data in the "cloud" and is accessible from a web based app or web browser. The "cloud" is just a secure server residing at a top class data center that is accessible via an encrypted internet connection. Anytime you enter credentials on a website, like your bank, you are entering an encrypted connection, so it’s really secure.
So here are the benefits of cloud accounting systems.
Easily Collaborate with Others
Being able to have your accountant or bookkeeper hop on to your accounting system to do their work while you still have access to do the things you need to do is incredibly valuable. Gone are the days of backing up QuickBooks and having your accountant do their work while you wait. Get set up with an app like Xero and your accountant is part of your team.
Ecosystem Specific for Craft Breweries & Food Crafters
No craft brewery or food crafter is alike. Some folks like certain POS apps or inventory tracking apps over others. With web based accounting systems, you can easily integrate these applications into your general ledger. What this means is that your daily sales can be easily transferred from your POS or e-commerce platform to your accounting system instead of having to be keyed in. Or, imagine running a batch of beer and have that post to your accounting system automatically so your profit and loss will reflect true cost of goods sold. This is all possible with web based accounting systems.
Access on Any Device
Since your accounting data is centralized on secure servers, there is no need to only access this data from one particular computer or through a remote desktop connection. With online accounting systems you can reconcile your bank accounts on your phone, create sales orders from available inventory on your iPad, and a bookkeeper using Windows can enter transactions that a manager using a Mac can approve. This allows for limitless ways to work with experts, staff, vendors, and investors in the craft brewery and food craft businesses.
Although there are many online accounting apps for small businesses out there, we do have our preferences. For accounting, we are huge fans of Xero. If you need an inventory management system, you can invest in Unleashed and have it directly integrate with Xero for a seamless experience.
If you would like to learn more about taking your craft brewery or food craft business to online accounting and business apps, let us know here.