Do Non-Profits Need to Switch to the Cloud?
Cloud computing can help a non-profit organization to reduce costs and increase benefits. This new technology can help the organization to free them from the burden of IT resource management. A non-profit should consider all of these points before they decide to move their accounting software to the cloud:
Cloud applications can reduce expenses and streamline the operation of the non-profit. The up-front costs are extremely affordable, allowing the organization to start becoming more efficient quickly.
2. Strategic Plan
You need to decide on what your organization wants to accomplish and what success will look like. When there is a long term strategy for the organization, deploying financial management software can be seamless. Everyone in your organization needs to be brought up to speed on the plan.
3. Audit Trail
The cloud provider that you decide to use should enable you to easily track all user activity to provide transparency and accountability, which are critical to donors and employees.
Cloud computing does have many advantages but you want to consider the security of your provider and their risk management options. Do your background research to see if the provider has had any recent security breaches and, if so, what they did to remediate that breach.
Do the Board of Directors and your Auditor support the decision to switch to the Cloud? Both play a part in developing the strategy to execute a successful plan to achieve the goals of the organization.
Every member of your IT and planning team needs to be able to connect to the cloud and perform their necessary tasks.
7. Service Level Agreement
You need a service level agreement in place between your non-profit and the service provider. This agreement should set out the performance standards and penalties as well as protections should your provider not perform as expected.
What if you change your mind?
It happens. Sometimes organizations decide they want to make a change, but then they are overwhelmed with the choice that they make. If things are not working out and you need to cancel your cloud accounting system, can you extricate your non-profit from the system easily enough? Always pay careful attention to the provider’s terms and ensure that you can move your data if need be. You will need to determine how much it will cost and how complex it will be to move that data.