Regardless of the industry focus, different companies are always striving for simplicity and automation in most of their processes. At the same time, they require data security and total control of their operations. Nowadays, the performance of these complex tasks mostly falls on the software. For many reasons, hard drive data storage is slowly losing its popularity, and the main promising direction for the future is cloud-based software development.
In this article, we are going to focus on cloud-based finance software.
Cloud-Based Software Features
First, let’s review the features of the cloud-based software in order to reveal its value for your business.
Remote Data Storage
Data is stored remotely and delivered to a customer via the internet connection. Remote data storage provides the ability to receive information from any device connected to the internet (computers, smartphones, tablets).
There’s a high probability of data saving even in case of hardware failure, as information is preserved in a remote data center, not on your hard drives.
The cloud is able to scale up and down depending on client demands. This means that you don’t have to worry about the acquisition and support of your own data storage infrastructure in case you need more space. Moreover, you pay only for that place in the repository that you actually use, but not for the lease of the server, all of the resources of which you may not actually use.
Web-Based Apps vs. Cloud-Based Apps
The definitions of what is a “web app” and what is a “cloud app” are sometimes used interchangeably, but not quite correctly so. Although they share similarities, there are also some important distinctions between them.
|Access via the internet or another computer network|
|Accessible from anywhere 24/7|
|All cloud applications are web applications, but not all web applications are cloud applications|
|Cloud App||Web App|
|Data is stored in a remote data center somewhere outside the company||Data is stored on the company’s computers or on its servers|
|Data is replicated in multiple data centers||Data is stored in a single data center|
|Can work offline||Can’t work offline|
|Doesn’t need a browser||Works in a browser|
|Naturally scalable||Limited by scalability|
|High uptime||Limited by availability|
|Multi-tenancy solution||Isolated-tenancy solution|
|Can run on the users’ computers or provider’s servers||Can only run on provider’s servers|
Why Is the Cloud Good for Financial Markets?
Customers of modern financial institutions require fast access to their accounts from any device and any geographical location. Moreover, they want to see the movement: transactions concerning income and expenses, for example. The cloud can offer everything to satisfy such demands: mobility, accessibility, functionality and usability. Therefore, it is preferred over the traditional storage on servers.
According to the research by MarketsandMarkets, the finance cloud market is actively growing in size and is expected to reach $29.47 billion by 2021. There are some major factors influencing the adoption of cloud computing and the growth of this marketplace:
This feature is the real power of cloud computing. It allows users to have access to their payment history and accounts at any time and from any location, and to run transactions without involving service providers.
Manual data entry is eliminated, repetitive processes can be performed with a single click, and therefore, human error is avoided. Saving time is another advantage of automation.
All financial functions are gathered on one platform and are also combined with CRM (customer relationship management). The entire organization can easily access any tools, which allows teams to collaborate easily.
The cloud is a real financial saver for businesses. Moving to the world of the cloud doesn’t need an upfront investment, unlike purchasing your own servers, which also adds the expenses of management and maintenance. The cloud model ensures full hardware utilization depending on your workloads. You don’t have to buy additional hardware just to be on the safe side and pay for its sleeping mode. Consequently, you can reduce power and workforce costs.
Both the provider and consumer are able to monitor resource usage. Reversal control provides transparency and mutual trust between these parties.
As we see, cloud storage of financial data has some obvious benefits. Lots of small, mid-size and large enterprises have already understood this and shifted to cloud platforms. With the help of the cloud financial software, sales and management teams get timely information, increase data accuracy and, as a result, become more efficient, enhance productivity and earn higher profits.
For some, it may be not an easy business decision to build cloud-based finance software. First, there are many options available, and it is hard to decide on which software to choose for a project. Second, the cost is always a big question (we’ll talk about it in the last section). Third, as well as with any process, cloud software adoption has some obstacles and may be subject to some risks. They are:
- Slow internet speed or lack of constant connection;
- Lack of standard program interfaces and platform technologies;
- Data leakage and data protection risks;
Another significant factor is that cloud software should be compatible with a company’s policies, needs and technological infrastructure. All of these factors are crucial for business and should be taken into consideration while developing and deploying cloud-based software.
|Read also: Advantages and Disadvantages of PaaS|
Public, Private or Hybrid Clouds
Cloud finance software can be accomplished in three forms: public, private or hybrid clouds. There are advantages and disadvantages to each model, and there are factors (such as the type of data, goals and budget) that you should consider in order to choose the appropriate model.
Public clouds are the most effective in shared resources; they show high scalability and fast implementation. But they may turn out to be vulnerable. Choose this form of software if:
- Lots of people use your application
- You perform team projects that require collaboration
- Your vendor has a well-established security policy
- Your application code needs testing and development
- Additional capacity should be added for peak times
Private clouds present the best level of security. But the company still has to purchase and develop additional software and infrastructure, which can put a dent in the budget. Personal finance software development is a great idea if:
- Your organization deals with data and applications and needs the highest security and protection
- Your organization can afford to run a cloud data center using its own resources
Note! Some companies dealing with public cloud technologies offer their private versions and vice versa. So you can develop a cloud-based personal finance software as well as a public one while working with a single provider.
The hybrid cloud is a mix of the two previous models. This model includes both public and private options and provides different levels of control (external and internal). The hybrid cloud is convenient because you can choose the most suitable environment for each aspect of your business. The drawback is that you must keep an eye on all of them simultaneously to be sure that the whole process is in order. The cost is also higher. You may come to hybrid clouds if:
- You provide services for numerous clients, and a public cloud is necessary to interact with them, but the data security is of high importance and should be kept within a virtual private network.
How Much Does It Cost to Develop Finance Software?
Finance software development cost can’t be low a priori. It certainly depends on what kind of system you want to build, and which features and capabilities you want to include. The price range for developing software for different financial organizations may vary by thousands of dollars. Remember that high-quality software is the lifeblood of the enterprise, so it is a worthy investment that inevitably results in profits. Pay attention to the details and consider all the pros and cons when choosing your financial software.
Actually, the cost of developing financial software may range from dozens to hundreds of thousands of dollars. The total cost of the product is composed of different parts.
In-house solutions involve initial expenses, which include the license fee and hardware infrastructure. Next, come the operative expenses. They include maintenance of the system, testing, software and hardware updates, fixing problems and crashes, and administrative tools. Moreover, there exists an amortization period of hardware (a couple of years), and out-of-date devices need replacement.
Cloud-based solutions are more economical. Initially, you should only buy a license. The majority of the cost is already included in the license fee. There’s no need for hardware or any physical devices. Setup, deployment and DevOps costs are minimal. Here we can add administrative, monitoring and analysis expenses (about 5-10% of the total price).
One more note: if you want to get cloud-based personal finance software that is both cheaper and dramatically better — let an outsourcing company do it. Custom software development is the key point for saving your money.
SaM Solutions has a track record of successful experience in cloud-based finance software development. The LexLive online application was created for Lexware GmbH — a leading German supplier of business and consumer financial applications. This application allows users to prepare invoices, get an overview of their financial situation and manage their accountancy via the internet.
Cloud-based services are becoming popular all over the globe, as they prove to be efficient and user-friendly. They can be useful not only for major companies. Startups can also take a successful stab at market dominance if they choose cloud computing technologies.
If you are interested in cloud-based software and would like to include it in your business, SaM Solutions is ready to help you. Working together with our experienced programmers and consultants, you will have access to all of the necessary information and will be able to decide on the exact model of the cloud-based software while staying within the budget.