When you need more computer storage capacity, you can add more servers and IT personnel or you can use cloud-based storage. What are your options and how do you choose a cloud-based storage platform that fits the needs of your business or accounting practice? To help make such a decision we look at Google Drive which is a general purpose cloud storage service that has been around since 2012. And we look at SmartVault which was specifically designed with your business in mind.
Google Drive is a general purpose file storage and synchronization service. You can upload up to 15 gigabytes of information for free using Google One which is the storage part of this service. The service is said to have about eight hundred million active users. It is set up to allow storage of documents, photos, and videos and it lets you upload and edit text documents, presentations, drawings, forms, and spreadsheets. These are all saved on Google Drive and available for collaborative editing.
Google Drive does not have specific integration with other business applications. As such, this is a good general purpose cloud storage option but not so specific for business. It has a free version up to 15 gigabytes but no free trial for large storage needs. It does not provide audit trails, electronic signatures, drag and drop, or workflow management. For the features that Google Drive provides you get good functionality and 24-hour customer service.
SmartVault was designed for business use and specifically for bookkeeping and accounting needs. It does not aim to fulfill the wishes of everyone who wants to save family photos but does work hard to meet the needs of businesses throughout the world. SmartVault offers a free trial and is available for $20 per month per user. Clients are added at no cost. It was founded in 2008.
SmartVault offers training via documentation, webinars, and online live. Unlike Google Drive, SmartVault has workflow management, audit trails, drag and drop functionality, and electronic signatures. It offers bank-level encryption of your information as you upload, store, work online, and download information.
Like Google Drive, SmartVault gives you all of the benefits you get with a cloud drive such as allowing physically distant employees to collaborate on work via the cloud. But, you can then think of SmartVault like a Google Drive on steroids. It provides you with a custom-branded portal for clients for compliance as well as absolutely secure file sharing. Intuitive features added for business include group security management, selective file sharing with permissions, audit reporting, and customized templates. With SmartVault you can view, manage, and attach documents from business applications like QuickBooks, FreshBooks, Xero, and many others.
If you want to try out either of the two services, you can upload a limited amount of data to Google Drive for free. On the other hand, you can pretty much upload all the data you need to for a free trial with SmartVault.
If you are a bit overwhelmed by the choices available, talk to us at Exigo Business Solutions. We can help you decide which online service is a fit for your business software and specifically which will integrate with your software to help you streamline your business, save money and work hours, and help provide the sort of business intelligence solutions needed in today’s business world.