Online accounting is a new concept for most people. We’ve tried to answer the most frequently asked questions here. If you have a question that is not answered in our FAQ, please email us your question.
- What is “outsourced,” virtual accounting?
- Why outsource my accounting and controllership functions?
- How can outsourced, online accounting help me manage my business?
- Won’t I lose control if the books are done by an outside service?
- I like having an extra employee around here to help with other things.
- How will I obtain access to my accounting material?
- Who owns my data?
- Who controls the money and makes the decisions?
- Can other people access my data?
- What about security?
A. Consultance Accounting Services uses the power of the Internet to provide our clients with virtual accounting services. The technical term for this service is an ASP or Application Service Provider. An ASP allows companies like yours to rent software (like QuickBooks®) that is updated and maintained by the service provider. By using the services of an ASP, your company will experience the convenience of 24/7 access to information on a secure network server, anywhere there is an Internet connection.
A. Let a professional do a professional’s job. If you are like most owners/managers, you take full pride in the services or products your company provides. You want to focus your time and energy on business strategy and goals. Outsourcing the accounting function to a dedicated, highly skilled professional services firm allows you to do exactly that. By outsourcing your accounting to Consultance Accounting Services, you’ll save valuable time in your day, reduce operating costs, and gain peace of mind.
A. By outsourcing your accounting to Consultance Accounting Services, your company will no longer have to endure the hiring process and lose value time and money training bookkeepers. Or, if you have been doing the accounting yourself, you can finally free up your time to focus on things more important to you and your business. You’ll be able to make informed decisions based on more than just your cash balance at the bank.
Outsourced online accounting gives your company accurate financial data so you can determine what customers and/or products are the most successful. You can concentrate more time on the more profitable aspects of your company. This capability allows a business owner to become truly savvy in investing energy and resources in the right places. The door is left open for you to do the tasks that are most important to your company’s well being. Using Consultance Accounting Services, you gain resources for your business to draw on that had been unavailable to you. You maintain full, round-the-clock control of and access to your information, while Consultance Accounting Services performs all of your accounting tasks and updates your accounting records. Truly the best of both worlds.
A. The short answer: No. You will actually now have more control since you will have improved financials at your fingertips and have more time and money to plan instead of simply reacting to business events.
A. OK. If you need someone to make coffee and fill his or her day with other small tasks, that’s great. But think about this: How easy is it to find a good bookkeeper that knows QuickBooks®, MYOB®, or Peachtree®? Doesn’t just play around with accounting software on the side, but knows it upside-down and inside-out. Someone whose number one job is to maintain the books for you so you don’t have to. Aren’t you tired of the never-ending cycle of problems caused by the entire process?
A. Consultance Accounting Services utilizes Right Networks, the industry leader in hosting Quickbooks, as its Application Service Provider (ASP) which host your accounting software and data file. At any time from any Internet accessible computer you can use your password to access your accounting records. They are always up to date and always accurate. This is the same procedure and technology your bank, medical record keepers, and the IRS use to access and process information. It is secure and it is dependable with 100% back-up running in real time.
A. With a hosted ASP like that used at Consultance Accounting Services, you own your data files and you are able to download them back to your local computer if you decide to discontinue the service. To contrast, with Internet accounting packages such as Net Ledger or QuickBooks® for the Web you do not own your data. If you decide to disconnect, you will need to have hard copy printouts of your information. These would then need to be re-keyed into the new software you choose.
A. You have 100% control of all monies and the decisions on how they are used or invested. You decide what individuals and which vendors get paid. We provide the data, but you approve all invoices for payment and sign all checks.
A. No one can have access to your data without your company’s express permission. Our ASP goes to extraordinary lengths when it comes to security measures. Consultance Accounting Services can offer greater security than many companies would have if the software and hardware were located in-house. Your data is backed up on a real time basis to a secure offsite backup facility. Also, the facility’s power supply is hooked up to backup generators to protect against power failures. How many of us with computers in our offices have this type of system and security?
Security measures are taken to make sure that your information is protected. Each company’s data is password-protected. You create your own passwords, so no one (not even the ASP employees) can see or have access to your password. As your data travels over the Internet, it is protected by a technology called Secure Sockets Layer or SSL encryption. SSL ensures that your data makes it your location before it can be decoded. For added security, your company needs to make sure your browser supports 128-bit encryption. This level of encryption is the highest currently supported by consumer Web browsers. Be sure you are also using the latest version of your Web browser, as enhancements have probably been made since you last upgraded. (See Security.)
A. This is one of our favorite questions. Right now if you are like most of us, your accounting records are in an unlocked file cabinet or worse, sitting on someone’s desk. This is what we call bad security. Consultance Accounting Services use the encryption to protect your files. You can be assured that you and only you are privy to your most important data.
A. Consultance Accounting Services works with a variety of software packages such as QuickBooks®, MYOB®, and Peachtree®. You simply rent these application packages from the vendors on a month-to-month basis.
There are several Application Service Providers that will host an application for you. At Consultance Accounting Services we host your accounting file ourselves. With any ASP you must still purchase the license for the software you use. The link to the ASP is set up on your system. You are then able to access the software and your data from any computer with an Internet connection.
A. Your software needs are dependent upon the accounting needs of your business. Several very popular software packages are MYOB®, Peachtree® Complete, and QuickBooks®. There are lots of considerations to look at when making this decision. We suggest that you speak with a Consultance Accounting Services professional or your CPA when making your choice. Two of the most important questions to ask are: “Will the software fit with the type of industry I operate in?” and “Will it handle the type of accounting reports my business needs?”
A. Actually less then what you’re spending now. First, we are most likely going to charge less than your current payroll for that staff person. Moreover, you will be able to save hiring and training costs. You will also no longer have to pay for rent, phone lines, or benefits. Best of all, you will NOT have to manage the accountant. For a no-obligation price quote contact us. Click here to estimate your savings.
A. We are experts. Accounting is our business. We put into place appropriate controls to ensure accurate and timely processing of all accounting data.
A. Our services are comprehensive and can include all required federal and state tax filings performed by Orin Schepps, CPA. However, Consultance Accounting Services does not perform audits, reviews, and compilations or provide opinions on your financial statements. We consider ourselves to be an extension of your company and work on your behalf to provide assistance to you and your outside auditors, should an audit be required.
A. Contact us. We welcome the opportunity to speak with you, answer all your questions, and work out all the details of how Consultance Accounting Services can help you. If it looks like we have the right solution, then try our service and start feeling better about the numbers in your business.