The future: Cloud

Unit4 has long been committed to developing its Cloud offering – but that’s not to say that this development doesn’t benefit on-premise deployments as well.


By way of illustration, as far back as 2012 (release Version 13), Unit4 introduced support for internet printing protocol. This was an early step to moving away from the physical server.


Until this update, if you wanted to print from Financials, you had to hook your printer off the back of the server where the software was deployed. Now you can print to any printer in the world that has an IP address, just configure it up as a printer – it’s that easy.


In Version 14 (2017) Unit4 removed the desktop as well as desktop-based integration capabilities. At this time, the company also introduced multi-factor authentication with the Unit4 identity server. All the while improving feature function, delivering products, looking after the architecture, working towards the Continuous Release model, and building Cloud readiness.


At this time Unit4 also started assessing the existing integration capabilities. The problem was that many of these capabilities were not suitable for Cloud as they were based on tables on the desktop. Table link, for example, the batch input that ‘everybody’ uses, wouldn’t work in the Cloud. So Unit4 developed a Cloud integration for Table Link.


The company also introduced safer hashing algorithms. By evolving its thinking, Unit4 is delivering a product that is not just feature-rich but is also firmly focused on keeping users safe, current, and up-to-date with technology. This is an ongoing commitment for Unit4, with improved cost of ownership and REST APIs coming up, a step forward from the previous SOAP APIs.


Next Unit4 plans to look at Office 365 Web, because (as of publishing) you still must have a desktop add-in integration for Excel. The company is also looking at containerized deployment and so on.