We know it can be tricky to leverage changing technology for the modern accountant. It’s vital to re-examine current workflows and technology fairly regularly before you can optimise processes.
You can start by doing an internal check of how your firm is performing in various business processes.
Here are some questions to incorporate into your practice health check:
- What percentage of your services is based on advisory?
- How long does it take to reconcile client bank accounts? Daily / Weekly / Monthly?
- What’s the average time it takes to respond to a client email? 1-2 hours / 4-6 hours / 1-2 business days?
- Have you put certain client services on a subscription model with automatic monthly payments?
- Can you charge upfront for services?
- What percentage of your processes are digital?
- What’s your ratio of accountants to admin staff?
- Can you identify any processes that can be automated? Onboarding a client? Collecting information? Job workflow? Client communications? Accounts payable/receivable?
- Are you utilising a cloud-based accounting program?
- Are there any applications that can be integrated with a cloud platform to save time?
- Can you get more clients to use cloud accounting technology?
- Do you send regular communication to clients?
- Could you make use of virtual back office staff to reduce costs and save time?
Once the pain points are identified, you can prioritise goals you’d like to set for the practice and build a roadmap.
For instance, if it takes more than a week to reconcile client bank accounts, consider what it will take to reach a KPI of reconciling in a maximum of 7 days in three months from now.
Discuss with staff what issues they face in following current processes before brainstorming ways to make improvements.
Working to streamline processes can save you double handling, time and money.
Doing an internal health check is an exercise we highly encourage directors to do at least annually, given how quickly new applications and software versions are released.
For more best practice tips to IT-enable, scale and streamline your firm, be sure to sign up for our webinars.