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Getting the right computer/IT setup for practice

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Hi all,

Would appreciate any pointers if you can. I’d like to build a robust IT system which is easily scalable for when (or if) I take on an employee but is also reliable and safe. Idiot proof would be wonderful.

I'm planning to use TaxCalc and Brightpay along with other software which is purely cloud based. I’m a bit peeved at the extra cost of over £300 for TaxCalc’s cloud connect, is it any good? I suppose it keeps the data safe if you have a hard drive failure, still feels overpriced though. I need to look into how Brightpay works with it’s cloud add on.

At the moment I’m using onedrive to store all client files, not sure if anyone can recommend any alternatives? I’m thinking what happens if an employee deletes some files by accident, so perhaps I need a decent backup system in place. Any recommendations?

Would be great to read what systems others have in place. Many thanks.

Replies (14)

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By SXGuy
03rd Dec 2020 16:13

You can take regular backups with taxcalc so you could always store these files in one drive to avoid any issues.

I personally don't see the need for the cloud service. I personally just set up remote access to the computer instead.

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Replying to SXGuy:
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By SouthCoastAcc
03rd Dec 2020 17:00

If you can do an auto backup that would be good, otherwise people forget.

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Replying to SouthCoastAcc:
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By SXGuy
03rd Dec 2020 17:30

Not checked for auto backup. But you are prompted to take a backup at regular intervals

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Replying to SXGuy:
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By mumpin
04th Dec 2020 11:38

You need Cloud Connect if you're going to have an employee and work concurrently. Its worth £300, I think.

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By jon_griffey
03rd Dec 2020 17:25

I would suggest get your IT hosted. Best thing we did get rid of our server.

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Replying to jon_griffey:
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By Cloudcounter
03rd Dec 2020 21:10

jon_griffey wrote:

I would suggest get your IT hosted. Best thing we did get rid of our server.

We did that, and it made sense at the time with desktop programs for accounts prep, tax and contact management.

Several years down the line, tax and contact management were both in the cloud, and we are long time users of Xero and other cloud software. It made no sense to me to pay someone to be able to log on to their machine and then into the cloud so we ditched the hosting. We didn't need a server but installed a NAS drive for the data, basically peanuts.

We moved accounts prep over to TaxCalc and the cost of the cloud connect was trivial bearing in mind that backups were automatically dealt with. (and the saving from ditching the hosting) Might be less good value for a single user.

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By paulwakefield1
03rd Dec 2020 19:29

Whatever you do, backups and backup routines are critical inc offsite. By all means use the cloud but I would never wholly rely on it for backups. And don't confuse syncing offerings (e.g. Dropbox) with a backup.

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Slim
By Slim
03rd Dec 2020 19:53

I've been considering backblaze which gets okay reviews and isn't too expensive.

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ALISK
By atleastisoundknowledgable...
04th Dec 2020 07:37

I’m considering moving everyone to hosted - people that are already there, do you also have IT support? The combined cost I’ve been quoted from a few companies (incl my current IT Support) is prohibitive.

Alternatively, we only use our ‘server’ to host Moneysoft... maybe I’d just be better hosting that app.

Suggestions?

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Replying to atleastisoundknowledgable...:
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By mbee1
04th Dec 2020 08:39

atleastisoundknowledgable... wrote:

I’m considering moving everyone to hosted - people that are already there, do you also have IT support? The combined cost I’ve been quoted from a few companies (incl my current IT Support) is prohibitive.

Alternatively, we only use our ‘server’ to host Moneysoft... maybe I’d just be better hosting that app.

Suggestions?

We moved to a hosted desktop about 4 years ago and the best thing we've ever done. Taking the huge server cabinet out of the office freed up space, made it much quieter and cooler in the summer. The company we went with was relatively new at the time and we got a great price with full support (not that we need it much) and it backs up every 30 minutes.

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Replying to mbee1:
ALISK
By atleastisoundknowledgable...
04th Dec 2020 11:10

Can I ask who & how much?

Thanks

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ALISK
By atleastisoundknowledgable...
04th Dec 2020 07:38

We use Sharepoint for our client docs. Does anyone know if that can do auto backups? If not, what do others use?

Thanks

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By elliottchandler
06th Dec 2020 02:01

It really is about trusting someone to look after a part of the business. It's the same as your clients trusting you to look after their accounts. Put your trust in a company that understands technology and then concentrate on what you do best. It's not just about one thing with technology it is about many things including backup and connectivity and many other aspects.

Take some time to build a relationship with a trusted partner and it will pay off.

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By Mr Hobbit
06th Jan 2021 12:19

We had to look at all our systems last year to make sure our team had remote access and the data was secure. We primarily use Googledrive and Dropbox for client files and BrightPay Connect to keep our clients' payroll secure. It takes a backup to cloud automatically and allows our clients and their employees access to their payroll data online. Everything we have put in place has been invaluable during these uncertain times.

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