The first point to make is that Sage 50 is not being ‘pushed out’ by Sage 50cloud. Your desktop version of Sage 50 will continue to work just fine into the future, but maybe you’re missing out on something by not moving to the latest version?
The second point we’d make is that if you’re already familiar with Sage 50, then making the move to Sage 50cloud will be a piece of cake. It’s just as intuitive to use, and you’ll feel right at home immediately.
So let’s look at what additional features Sage 50cloud can offer you and your business. Sage 50cloud is the ideal choice for ‘road warriors’, remote workers, the self-employed, or businesses that have multiple staff working outside of the office environs. Connected users can access key business data and information from Sage 50cloud via Office 365 integration.
Another big difference relates to ease of collaboration with your accountant, or with staff members at different sites. With Sage 50cloud the data being shared or worked on is secure and available. The big benefit of this is that any number of authorised people can access, review or amend the data in real time.
Another big difference between these two versions of Sage Accounting relates to physical security. Imagine your office was burgled or went on fire – what would happen to your data? In most cases, it would be lost forever. With Sage 50cloud, however, using the scheduled backup option in Sage 50cloud Accounts and syncing with Microsoft Office 365, you can set your software to upload your backups automatically to Microsoft OneDrive. Therefore, it can be it’s stored securely in the cloud, and can be retrieved whenever or wherever you like. This offers a huge sense of peace of mind to small and medium-sized businesses.
Sage 50cloud also means that your data can be scheduled in advance for back-up. And despite all our good intentions, many of us either forget to back up on a daily basis, or put it on the long finger. Remember, too, with the help of Microsoft OneDrive you won’t need any external hard drive for your back-up. It can be all waiting for you in the cloud, safe and secure, and impervious to the malware and spyware that threaten non-cloud environments.
Another major benefit of Sage 50cloud is the fact that it offers full integration with Microsoft Office 365. You’re probably familiar with Office 365, but if you’re not, it’s become the preferred cloud-based provider of universally-used packages such as Microsoft Word, Microsoft PowerPoint and Microsoft Excel. There are very few offices in the country that don’t use at least one of these on a regular base.
Because Office 365 integrates so easily with Sage 50cloud, you effectively end up with an ‘Office Anywhere’ environment. You can run your business from a hotel bedroom, from a tradesman’s van, from your primary office, or from pretty much anywhere around the globe.
Expense Capture is another benefit of Sage 50cloud that you might not have expected. When you work on the move, you can often lose or misplace expense receipts. And if they don’t exist, they can’t be claimed for by the business – or the individual. Missing receipts can also drive your accounts personnel to distraction. With Sage 50cloud, however, your staff just use their smartphone to take a photo of their expense receipts. They can include a short note explaining the nature of the expense, and migrate this to Sage 50cloud via Office 365.
Another handy feature of Sage 50cloud is Sage Drive. This is the engine which powers Sage 50cloud hybrid-cloud capabilities. What this means is that users appoint a Sage 50cloud Administrator (normally a member of staff) who can push all data into the cloud.
They then authorise users within your company – including your external accountant. The upshot of all of this is that any changes made by the authorised users are automatically synced back, so there’s never any doubt as to whether staff are viewing the most up-to-date version of a particular document or record.
For companies who have sales reps working on the road, and who rarely visit the office, another handy feature of Sage 50cloud is the ability to engage in remote invoicing. Authorised users can create and send invoices remotely. Even better, these invoices can include a Sage Pay Now link. This lets the customer pay instantly via PayPal or an approved credit or debit card. This can be a massive plus for cashflow, and will prove very popular with your Financial Controller.
It’s also worth mentioning that these sales reps can access details on the customer via Microsoft Office 365. This can be anything from a delivery address to historical orders or payment history. This means that your reps can leave a meeting, log on from their car, and complete the paperwork there and then – with absolutely no need to return to base. This is a huge plus on the part of the cloud version of Sage Accounting.
A final point we’d make is that Sage 50cloud also lets users integrate other applications that can increase efficiency and contribute to the bottom line.
The bottom line is with Sage 50cloud you can work smarter.