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April 5, 2017

Sage Summit: We have a million customers in the cloud, says UK boss

Kicking off the Summit in London, UK MD Alan Laing spoke about the future - and the future is cloud.

By Ellie Burns

Sage went big on cloud at the Sage Summit in London today, with UK MD Alan Laing using his keynote address to talk about the current success and future direction of a cloud-focused Sage.

Kick-starting the address, Laing went big and hard on the numbers underpinning Sage’s recent performance – claiming to have ‘a million customers in the cloud’, the UK boss told those assembled that the firm processes £3 trillion every year and deal with the salary payments of 53% of UK employees – impressive numbers which received a sizeable reaction from the crowd.

The future for Laing is firmly in the cloud, with the UK boss forecasting that 70% of all software will be in the cloud. Looking to build upon that one million number, Laing’s message to those at the Summit was clear – adopt cloud and grow with Sage, Sage in return will promise to ‘simplify, build and grow’. Pushing the message home to adopt cloud and get on board with Sage, Laing plastered a warning message on a big screen to the Summit attendees – “If you don’t like change, you’re going to like irrelevance less,” the message boldly stated.

sage summit 2017

It wasn’t all warning messages and top-line numbers from Laing at the Sage Summit, who also revealed findings from a major piece of global research. According to the Practice of Now report, 96% of those surveyed are confident about the future of accountancy and their role in it, despite 68% seeing their role changing through automation in the future.

Overwhelmingly, 86% reported they would be happy for technology to make such admin elements of their job invisible so they can focus on their clients and building their practice.

“Change can often divide the crowd,” said Jennifer Warawa, EVP Product Marketing, Sage.

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“This research shows most accountants see the empowering opportunity automation can bring, freeing them up to focus on their practice and their clients. As artificial intelligence and bots become progressively more intuitive, the door opens further towards the future of invisible admin and gives them the space to spend their time on more valuable services for their clients.

READ MORE: Sage adds HR to its cloud rig with Fairsail buoy

“The industry must come together to support this change and help eliminate any barriers or fears that can hold accountants back. The call to action is now with accountants and small business owners to embrace the change and decide how they will spend the time that automation will afford them.”

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