New Benchmark Study Shows Accountants Leading their Clients to the Cloud

Newcastle - 7 December 2015

Goal is to move 35% of clients to cloud platform in the next 12 months

A major new benchmarking study on the UK accountancy profession by global business advisory software specialists, PANALITIX, has revealed that Accountants are leading their clients to the cloud. The findings show that UK Accountants are focused on tripling the numbers of clients using cloud accounting software over the course of the next 12 months.

The study carried out in October 2015 amongst 103 firms found that on average 11% of clients are using cloud accounting solutions such as Quickbooks online, Xero and others but within 12 months, the average goal is to have 35% of clients using the cloud. To put that into perspective, the 103 firms currently have 6,733 clients using cloud accounting and their plan is to have 24,024 clients in the cloud within a year.

The ‘Just 9 numbers’ Benchmarking Study on the UK accounting profession is based on the responses of 103 individual firms to 9 key questions about the performance of their firms. Their sizes varied dramatically, ranging from a brand new start-up firm with little revenue right through to £24M. The average revenue was £1,400,712.

“Clearly this a strategy the UK profession is embracing,” says Rob Nixon, CEO, PANALITIX. “And so they should. I have seen at first hand in Australia and New Zealand how having your business clients on cloud accounting is proven to be a more efficient system for both client and Accountant alike.”

The following markets have already made this switch to cloud based accounting applications

  • 35% of New Zealand SME’s
  • 20% of Australian SME’s
  • 10% of UK SME’s
  • 5% of USA SME’s and
  • 2% of Canadian SME’s

Rob Nixon continues, “We have seen how the take up of cloud accounting solutions has impacted the accountancy profession in New Zealand and Australia and UK accountants can learn from their experiences.”

  •  Accountants are no longer required to re-key financial information from one source to another and consequently spend up to 60% less time on preparing annual accounts
  •  As accounting systems provide real time information, Accountants are not required to provide as much data integrity services 
  • Clients are aware of such cost savings and their willingness to pay fees for less non-value added services is reducing at a rapid rate.
  • This creates a market for the new savvy, nimble, marketing orientated Accountant who can promote and deliver value added advisory services to a marketplace that really does value the service.
  • Regulators are improving the flow of financial information in terms of lodgement interfaces whereby SME cloud based accounting applications will be able to send financial data directly from the cloud, bypassing the traditional accountant
  • This results in the annual compliance ‘bread and butter’ services becoming commoditised and Accountants facing severe fee pressures from clients and prospects