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How Multi-Tenancy Works in Cloud Accounting

How Multi-Tenancy Works in Cloud Accounting

Multi Tenant Cloud AccountingIf you’re like many others, you’ve been hearing a lot about the cloud. However, if you were to take a step back to look at the overall market of these, you’d notice that not every platform is the same. It’s not just an on-premise vs. cloud debate.

Especially in cloud financial management and ERP, the war is raging between different cloud vendors; as PwC’s Strategy& group is reporting that by 2016, investment in SaaS solutions will more than double to $78B while investment in traditional ERP systems will decline over 30% to less than $15B.

So, if you’re like the many others that are considering the cloud, one of the things you will be hearing is the multi-tenancy factor. What is Multi-Tenancy? Why is Multi-Tenancy better for your business?

Definition of Multi-Tenancy

To start, let’s define multi-tenancy:

Multitenancy is a mode of operation of software where multiple independent instances of one or multiple applications operate in a shared environment.

The instances (tenants) are logically isolated, but physically integrated. The degree of logical isolation must be complete, but the degree of physical integration will vary.

The tenants (application instances) can be representations of organizations that obtained access to the multitenant application (this is the scenario of an ISV offering services of an application to multiple customer organizations).

The tenants may also be multiple applications competing for shared underlying resources (this is the scenario of a private or public cloud where multiple applications are offered in a common cloud environment). (Gartner)

A bit verbose, here’s an easier way of explaining it.

Simple Definition of Multi-Tenancy

Are you in an office building/complex? It could be as simple as that. Let’s define multi-tenancy using these terms.

Simple Definition: A developer owns a complex that includes 12 buildings, with each building housing offices. These offices have employers, who in turn have employees. Employees can only access information from their employers, and employers never exchange information with other employers.

That’s the very basic idea of how a multi-tenant approach works. Logically isolated, but still sharing the same site.

It does go deeper than that, as the employers never know who else is in the office next to them, and the employees only get the information about the business that’s provided to them from the boss—no more, no less.

Benefits of Multi-Tenant Cloud Financial Management

The first benefit that stands out is the impact on cost—in both hardware and software. If one company hosts the entirety of its application in one or two major data centers, the pricing can be more visible.

Next is the ease of updating. If all of the tenants are sharing the same pool, updates can be made to everyone’s software at the same time. One caveat, of course: Upgrade compatibility. For best-in-class software that’s built to integrate with other best-in-class offerings like CRM, T&E, or tax management, this will rarely if ever be a problem. For suites, which often are integrated through complex connectors, an update can derail the integration, requiring your company to pay costly support fees.

Finally, there is the continued drive for greatness that many may fail to realize in their consideration. In multi-tenancy cloud accounting and financial management, the vendor assumes the risk, and if one fails, all fail. This keeps vendors on their toes and means that the vendor needs to always be innovating in order to provide unmatched security, uptime, and availability.

How Intacct Makes Multi-Tenancy Work for Your Organization

Let’s face it, when it comes to cloud financial management, a lot is riding on the ability of the vendor to maintain its public image for reliability and security because once again, if one fails, all fail. This is why Intacct has worked tirelessly to provide unmatched service and availability in its multi-tenant cloud financial management application.


From the physical data centers (operated by industry leaders Savvis and Herakles) to the application and data security, Intacct has taken steps to ensure utmost security at all levels. This allows the smallest users to gain the security they deserve but couldn’t afford, and the largest users to gain the security they need at a lower cost to themselves.

Uptime and Reliability

Intacct is known in this respect as a company that underpromises and overdelivers. Promising 99.8% uptime as part of the company’s Buy with Confidence guarantee with reimbursements if they ever go under, the company has delivered a 99.993% uptime in the past year (3 seconds average per week).

Constant Innovation

This can be attributed to both the multi-tenant offering and the best-in-class offering. The company can focus on making its core offering more effective, more efficient, and more useful for your business. By focusing on innovation, Intacct can make more product updates each year. And with the multi-tenant ideal, you’ll never be left behind due to their quarterly sweeping upgrades (which again will not affect any integration).

When you’re looking at Accounting and Financial Management Software for your business, the best way to reap the rewards of the cloud is to go with a company cloud-born, not one that’s late to the party. Intacct has been in the cloud since 1999, maturing its product offering well before any of the new entrants or adopters.

Learn more about how Brittenford can help you make the most of your move to the cloud with Intacct by reading the related resources below.

1 Comment


  1. […] achieve true multi-tenancy that enables ISVs to take advantage of the economies of scale that the Cloud offers, ISVs will […]

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