Cloud Lease Management & Accounting Software Is Good For Your Business
For modern businesses that operate in an increasingly digitised and fast paced environment, cloud lease management and accounting software is an intelligent and calculated investment. Working with software and cloud services provides you with a clearer understanding and overview of your portfolio’s health and the associated accounting obligations. Not only that, it also allows businesses to identify potential opportunities for optimisation and improved efficiencies, as well as facilitating smarter decision making.
Lease Management should not be problematic.
Traditionally, companies with extensive lease portfolios manage their leases on restrictive spreadsheet applications or, even more worrying, store their important lease documentation in archaic and ineffective manual filing systems. Although incredibly useful 10 years ago; these problematic, error intensive and outdated methods of lease management are antiquated when compared to modern alternatives. Cloud solutions not only improve the overall process of lease management, they can also save time and money for your organisation in the process.
The Problems With Traditional Methods:
- Inconsistencies in storage and processes – With documentation archived on individual computers, shared drives, USB storage or in filing cabinet, finding the right lease documentation can be a time consuming and challenging task. Critical data can be easily lost on complex systems, spreadsheets become oversaturated and only a few members of staff are able to interpret them. For large organisations this becomes even more challenging as lease credentials can be misplaced or dispersed both geologically and departmentally.
- Master of None – Spreadsheet platforms such as Excel are a jack of all trades and used for various business requirements; from detailed accounting reports to the staff talent show sign-up sheet. There is no specific function to run required lease accounting reports or to track a lease's current progress. Instead, users have to adapt makeshift methods of reporting and managing using the purposefully vague applications they have, investing time, energy and resources that should be better placed.
- Prone to human errors – Applications such as Excel are not the problem themselves; it’s the spreadsheets that are created within the program and often bring rise to easily avoidable errors. In fact, various reports have revealed that nearly 90% of spreadsheets contain errors and almost one in five large businesses have suffered financial losses as a result of errors in spreadsheets
- Lack of scalability – As a business grows and data volumes expand, it’s reasonable to expect that systems and platforms scale accordingly. Implementing new versions of traditional software as your portfolio grows can be an expensive, time consuming and resource intensive exercise.
- Not suited for accounting compliance – Traditional methods of lease management have limited tracking and reporting functions. There is also a distinct lack of specialised lease accounting calculation tools, making achieving compliance to the new leases standard extremely difficult.
- Data overload – When a data set becomes too large, applications such as Excel become inadequate; often relying on multiple worksheets or complicated and complex formulas to process the data. Simple tasks become a scavenger hunt and spreadsheets are often misplaced among staff. This significantly slows the reporting and data analysis functions that keep businesses competitive.
- Obstructs quick decision – Modern businesses rely on instant access to real-time, accurate information to facilitate the best strategic decisions for company progress and portfolio development. Traditional software and processes are too slow and convoluted for the global drive for data management and obstruct swift, informed strategic decision making, meaning businesses are less likely to be reactive to industry and corporate trends.
The Benefits of the Cloud
Cloud lease management and accounting solutions solve a lot of the problems currently facing the traditional method, whilst also providing additional, valuable benefits.
Such solutions provide companies the security, flexibility, total control and visualisation of their entire portfolio. Powerful features and reporting capabilities allow users to make informed decisions based on real-time lease data. With intuitive dashboards and integrated notifications, companies can ensure they stay ahead of lease obligations, identify issues, facilitate smarter strategic decisions and highlight opportunities for improving efficiency and cost savings.
- Total visibility – With lease accounting software you’ll have easy access to all your leasing data on one unified repository. Powerful dashboards give an instant overview of your entire lease portfolio, making it easy to identify lease obligations and accounting requirements in real-time.
- Easy access – Being an online platform, you’ll always have total accessibility to your critical lease data at any time, any location and from any device as long as you have access to the internet. Search filtrations, cloud storage and instant data analysis allows faster, simpler access to the information and docuements you need.
- Multiple users – Unlike the traditional platforms, multiple users are able to access the same real time information simultaneously, on one centralised platform. User levels can be tailored to meet your organisational requirements. Across departments or geographies, full audit trails allow you to record and track all decisions giving you full control over your portfolio.
- Tailored functions from inception to termination – Lease management and accounting software is specifically designed to optimise your lease processes and contains numerous functions dedicated to each step of the leasing process. From tracking the progress of arranging a new lease through to confirming a lease termination directly to the lessor.
- Cost savings – There are no initial set up costs and the removal of internal maintenance, IT capital expenditure and system integration means companies can achieve economies of scale. With cloud lease management software these are things that are managed and maintained by the vendor, allowing your organisation to free up cash flow that can be reinvested in your core business alongside long term ROI from efficiency savings.
- Scalable – Cloud solutions are designed to evolve with your organisation. Updates are automated so you can rest assured that you have the most up-to-date software for your lease accounting and management requirements.
- Highly secure – With SSL encryptions, secure servers and complex firewalls that are constantly regulated in purpose-built data centres, cloud solutions vendors go to great lengths to ensure their client’s data is fully protected. With regular data backups you know your critical data is in a safe place.
Finance Technology is Evolving
The business benefits and long term ROI of transferring your companies entire lease portfolio to the cloud, far out way the initial cost of investment and the resources needed to restructure internal processes and procedures. Centralising a lease portfolio on one unified data repository provides companies with the total visibility and tools needed to make calculated strategic decisions and drive out valuable cost and time savings.
By failing to react to changing technologies and a constantly shifting business landscape, companies are likely to experience detrimental effects on their business performance and also run the risk of suffering from technological obsolescence.
To emphasise this point, in a study conducted by Raconteur, 40% of those interviewed identified cloud computing and storage as the technology to have the greatest impact on business in the next 5 years and Gartner predicts that by 2020, 75% of organisations will deploy advanced analytics as part of a platform or analytics application to improve business decision-making. This is supported by Phil Sheridan, UK Managing Director of specialist recruitment consultancy Robert Half, who says; "As UK businesses continue to invest in the digitisation of their finance function it cements the importance placed on the department for the organisations’ success. Businesses are providing their accounting and finance departments the tools to forecast and test business scenarios often using real-time information.
“Accounting and finance professionals play a key role in identifying growth opportunities and cost efficiencies leading to competitive advantages for business".
There is a clear pressure for business leaders to invest in optimising their financial function in order to achieve long term fiscal and operational success, with cloud computing and advanced data analysis technologies taking a lead role in business development and efficiency.