Accounting software: is it better to rent or buy a license?

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Thanks to technological advances, especially in security and the cloud, it is possible to manage your company’s accounting online via leased software. Generally, we talk about “SaaS accounting” or “cloud accounting”. We have already proposed several solutions of this type in our previous articles. However, not all professionals agree on these solutions. Each activity has its own specificities and each professional has its own habits. If you are considering acquiring or changing your accounting tool, here are some criteria that will allow you to choose between leasing or purchasing accounting software.

Needs related to the trade

If your business requires a custom accounting application (liberal professions for example) you are unlikely to find a suitable cloud solution. Indeed, the so-called “business” solutions are most often sold and almost impossible to find for rent. It is therefore preferable to acquire a software license that you can customize and modify according to your company’s needs.

Adaptability and availability

Cloud solutions do not require installation and are accessible from any computer connected to the Internet. This means that by choosing a SaaS solution you will not have to worry about updates or maintenance. This is a perfect choice for companies that do not have the right skills and internal resources to install updates.

Be careful, if you choose an online accounting solution, make sure that your company has a sufficiently stable Internet connection.

The flexibility

We can never repeat it enough, it is essential to ask yourself about your company’s accounting needs before you put your hand in your pocket. Do you need a backup solution (one-time) or a more durable solution?

If you have a long-term vision, it is obviously the acquisition that you should favour, as leasing is generally much less profitable.

On the other hand, the license is less flexible, so you will not be able to terminate it at any time without any problems, which is not the case with the subscription packages. These can be terminated at any time.

The reputation of the publisher and data security

In any case, it is recommended to choose the software of a publisher that has already proven its worth. We can even go further by taking data management into account. When it comes to an online accounting tool, it is advisable to find out how your data is hosted: is it stored on a secure server? Are they hosted in France or in “countries of trust”?

It should be noted that in some countries (e. g. the United States) organizations can legally access your data. Be aware of the legislation in force in the country where your data is stored. It should also be noted that some publishers do not hesitate to use third parties for data management.

If you opt for a more traditional accounting management (purchasing), you do not have to ask yourself these questions since it is up to your company to ensure the security of accounting data, so make sure you have sufficient human and material resources. This brings us to the last criterion: cost.

The cost

As noted above, purchasing a license is more profitable in the long term. Online solution providers pass on the costs of storage, maintenance and, of course, security. However, keep in mind that if a company acquires a license, it will have to be able to bear these various costs on its own to be profitable.

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