- MYOB creates accreditation program for hosting partners
- Accountants can avoid four-year server refresh
- Hosted practice management software can be used from iPad, other tablets
MYOB has encouraged accountants to move to hosted versions of its practice management software with an accreditation program for third-party IT hosting companies.
The program was intended to help accountants move their practice management and other business software to the hosting providers, said Adam Ferguson, MYOB’s general manager, accountants division. “They can do this without compromising on the rich functionality they have come to expect from their MYOB AE or AO software,” he said.
MYOB promoted the program as a way for accounting firms to outsource the cost and hassle of running their own servers and IT infrastructure. Accountants could avoid buying new servers every four years by moving to a hosted service, Ferguson said.
The hosted version of the Windows-based software could also be used on almost any mobile device, including an iPad.
Ferguson said he spoke to several firms already using hosted MYOB services. A 50-employee Brisbane firm claimed it was easier to add or reduce accounting staff and had eliminated the need for its internal IT administrator. “There was definitely a cost saving,” Ferguson told BoxFreeIT.
The handful of providers already selling hosted MYOB Accountants Office and hosted MYOB Accountants Enterprise have never had an official relationship with MYOB. The new program employed an independent auditor to approve the hosting provider’s infrastructure, security and processes in return for an official tick of approval.
Cloud Practice Partners were not required to standardise the technology platform used for providing the hosted service, Ferguson said. “Whether they run on Amazon or use Citrix or not, it’s up to them,” he said.
MYOB had considered whether it should sell hosted software directly but decided against it, Ferguson said. “It’s not our expertise. There were already some quite capable suppliers in the marketplace who had invested in infrastructure,” he said.
While the MYOB program sought to help accountants find quality suppliers, MYOB wouldn’t provide any guarantees.
“The commercial relationship is between the cloud partner and the accountant. MYOB has no commercial commitment,” Ferguson said.
“We will be encouraging any firm to do their research, speak to other accountants to understand what the service delivery is like” of each hosting provider, Ferguson said. “The accountant still needs to do their homework.”
There were between five and eight hosting providers already selling hosted MYOB software, Ferguson said. The program would expand to include more providers, he added.
Hosted or cloud practice management software was gaining in popularity. Reckon claimed it had 24,000 users of its Reckon Hosted service, while Xero and Intuit were giving accounting partners free web-based practice management software.
Image credit: MYOB