In this episode of Inside Accountancy, we spoke about this topic with Jamie Costello, the co-founder of HR, payroll and pensions software provider Paycircle.
With a background in corporation tax and experience from his time at Microsoft Research, Costello has seen the growth of the cloud both inside and outside of the accounting industry.
“What we’re really talking about when we’re talking about the cloud is, we’re talking about large data warehouses, hosted by people like Amazon or Microsoft or Google, who maintain vast server farms,” Costello explained.
“When people talk about going to the cloud, really that’s like saying, ‘I’m going to the shops,’ and you really want to know what you’re going to buy, so just ‘going to the shops’ isn’t going to get you a nice jacket.”
Costello also explained that the data security benefits of the cloud are plentiful, but accountants need to vet service providers on their specific security standards.
“What you really want to be doing is asking your supplier how they set up their security, because if they’re done it properly, there is almost no chance of the information being lost.
“Let’s imagine, worst case scenario, somebody does get a hold of one of the accountancy workers’ credentials. So this is an example of the way the cloud has extra features, which people—when they talk about the cloud—don’t really realise that what you’re doing is using not only their storage and computing power, but also leveraging their software.”
In this episode, we also discuss: