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Cloud Accounting Software: Pushing Automation to the Limit

In today’s digital age, cloud accounting software has become an essential tool for businesses of all sizes.

With the mass adoption of these tools, you’re likely already using several finance automation features, whether it’s related to bookkeeping or VAT returns filings. 

However, are you pushing automation to the limit in your company? Doing so can help streamline processes, save time, and allow for better strategic decisions in today’s unpredictable economy.

Push Core Cloud Accounting Software to the Limit

If you’re using cloud accounting software such as Xero, QuickBooks, Sage, or Netsuite, you’ll already be taking advantage of automation features related to bookkeeping. However, you may miss out on incorporating automation features that are less apparent.

For example, month-end processes can be streamlined by automating admin-heavy workflows such as fixed asset registers and recurring journals.

Fixed Asset Registers:

Fixed asset registers take time and effort to maintain. It can be challenging to track whether assets have been fully written off and if consistent depreciation methods have been applied. Most cloud vendors have fixed asset registers that allow you to log all items and set up a universal depreciation strategy. 

When it’s month-end, all you have to do is click a button for a complete depreciation journal to take place rather than posting an entry for every item in the register.

Recurring Journals:

Recurring journals related to prepayments can take up significant resources for large SAAS companies. 

Setting up schedules to post recurring journals will ensure these can be completed automatically at month-end, eliminating the risk of team members forgetting to post them.

Group Consolidations

Working in a large company will likely consist of several related group entities and a corporate structure. This may be due to the creation of new companies for international markets or products, as well as efficiencies related to tax planning. 

Many mid-market cloud accounting vendors have limited consolidation features or may not offer this functionality. Consolidating at the group level is essential as it gives you full visibility of how the overall company is functioning.

Instead of downloading data manually and consolidating via spreadsheets, using a cloud consolidation tool, such as Spotlight Reporting and Fathom, can merge all entities at the group level and apply consistent accounting standards related to revenue recognition and currency gains/losses. 

This will give you visibility about group performance in real-time rather than just once per month.

Intercompany Recharges

Companies with multiple entities have to post monthly journals to reclassify costs and revenues across their group for better visibility of how each company is performing. 

For example, one company may pay SAAS costs on behalf of the entire group, with them needing to be recharged for each entity. Until recently, there has been no way to do this through automation, with this work being completed manually and on spreadsheets.

Emerging vendors like Mayday allow you to create rules to apportion and calculate costs to group companies. Recharge rules can be made based on prices, cost plus, or on a percentage basis. You can review the final transactions before they are posted as journals through the software, ensuring accuracy.

In conclusion, cloud accounting software has a lot of automation features that can be used to streamline processes, save time and make better strategic decisions. By pushing automation to its limit, businesses can improve their efficiency and focus on more critical aspects of their business.

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