TechnologyAccounting SoftwareRisky business?

Risky business?

According to software assurance specialist NCC Group, nine out of ten UK companies do not take measures to assure their business-critical software.

Although 88% of FTSE-100 companies are covered by specialist software assurance scheme Escrow, the majority of smaller companies take an unnecessary risk by not doing so.

And the responsibility lies with the finance director, says Rob Cotton, director of the NCC Group’s Escrow Solutions business. ‘Most good FDs wouldn’t let the IT department do it. It should fall under the finance departments banner.’

He says the problems lie with ‘inertia’. Many companies will only get a new software rollout 95% done. Although Escrow may have been talked about at some point it is often overlooked after a new rollout is physically installed.

Dave Anstey, technical director at accounting software company SquareSum, agrees Escrow is often overlooked, and believes the IT department is usually the one pushing for it. ‘Ultimately it will be the finance department which decides not to go ahead due to cost issues,’ he says. ‘Smaller companies will often try and sweep the issue under the carpet which is extremely foolish.’

Although Escrow is not particularly expensive, Anstey is doubtful over its usefulness. ‘It’s fair enough to say it is cheap,’ he says. ‘But what good does it do? In the end all you get is a CD containing source code. It is then up to you to install and implement it which is the expensive bit.’

SquareSum has an Escrow agreement which means it has to lodge its software with NCC. Application software source code is then put on a CD, stored and updated at least once a year. Cotton says SMEs are more than happy to spend £100,000 on an accountancy software application but won’t think about assurance.

But Anstey says it might be easier for SMEs – which don’t typically have a huge IT department – to simply swap suppliers and take the risk, rather than investing in Escrow.

Related Articles

5 key tech innovations helping accountants transform their businesses

Accounting Software 5 key tech innovations helping accountants transform their businesses

2w Heather Darnell, Founder of Ask the BOSS
Finance and the tech foundation: what’s needed to deliver impactful business insights?

Accounting Software Finance and the tech foundation: what’s needed to deliver impactful business insights?

3m Workday | Sponsored
Best accounting software for businesses in the UK

Accounting Software Best accounting software for businesses in the UK

3m Accountancy Age, Reporters
Making sense of enterprise tech concepts for finance teams

Accounting Software Making sense of enterprise tech concepts for finance teams

4m Workday | Sponsored
Open Banking: what you need to know

Accounting Software Open Banking: what you need to know

4m Edward Berks, Xero
Accountancy in the digital age: Flexibility, agility, efficiency

Accounting Software Accountancy in the digital age: Flexibility, agility, efficiency

6m Pegasus Software | Sponsored
Sage purchases Intacct in its largest ever acquisition

Accounting Software Sage purchases Intacct in its largest ever acquisition

10m Alia Shoaib, Reporter
5 tips for SMEs to protect cash flow

Accounting Software 5 tips for SMEs to protect cash flow

10m Alia Shoaib, Reporter