The coronavirus pandemic has shown us that things can quickly change overnight. What exactly are successful accounting firms doing differently in today’s fast-paced world? Are there tools and best practices you should be adopting to keep your edge?
In this article, we will cover 6 strategies to help you boss your accounting practice and become a future-ready firm.
Adopt a technology-first mindset
There’s little debate that the accounting world has changed dramatically through emerging technology, and it’s easy to see why.
Time is a precious resource within any accounting practice, and in order to run more efficiently, how you spend it is crucial.
Start with your manual processes. Rather than spending precious billable hours on basic admin tasks like manually entering data, let your accounting software and add-ons, like AutoEntry, use automation to do it for you.
If you’re ready to take your firm to the next level, embrace technology and the new world of accounting.
Understand your clients’ needs
As an accountant, delivering more value to clients has probably always been high up on your agenda. After all, managing small business finances is tough and you’re the expert your clients run to.
But the world works differently now. We’re living in a time where the stakes are high, resources are limited, and flexibility is key.
To be a successful accountant and ensure you’re supporting your clients the way they need, you must think bigger.
Consider taking a more client-centric approach. Tailor conversations around what you can do to help them make informed decisions for their business. Discuss how leveraging cloud technology can help them achieve a work-life balance.
Digging a little deeper to find out what they need is a win-win!
Putting clients first: Understanding the new normal
Learn how to reach a new level of customer success within your accounting firm, while navigating a new landscape for accountants.
Master project management basics
Project management can give your practice a competitive edge by defining the success of your firm the same way your clients do—through results.
But as you know, there are common constraints that can easily affect the outcome your clients expect.
Say you added a new advisory service to your firm. How long did it take for you to complete this project? Were you within budget? Was your client satisfied?
It’s crucial to have defined scope and resources in order to meet your projects’ unique requirements. Check out the five project lifecycle phases to learn more.
Improve business processes
How often do prospects slip through the cracks? Do you deliver proposals only to hear crickets? Do people in your firm stiffen at the idea of “selling” or say they’re too busy for business development?
There is a common cure for all of these problems: a business development process.
If you want to lead your firm forward and grow, everyone should be a part of the process.
Yes, you need to have someone overseeing every lead, but ensure that your team understands your firm’s goals and strategy for winning new clients.
Grow your practice with Sage accountant software
CPAs and accountants can trust Sage’s tools and resources to grow their accounting firms and better serve clients.
Attract, retain, and inspire talent
Ask any high-performing future-ready accounting firm about their number one asset, and they’ll tell you it’s their people. In a nutshell, your in-house talent is what differentiates you from your competitors.
Whether you’re searching for top talent or want to ensure yours stick around for the years to come, providing a strong work culture and opportunities for people to grow is key.
And in today’s world, benefits, location, and commute-time are crucial factors you need to consider.
Market your services
Marketing is your lifeline to growth. It connects your firm’s brand to current and potential clients. Without it, you’re out of sight, out of mind.
The best part is you don’t have to trim your budget! Get creative with your marketing efforts and save while doing it.
Leverage social media advertising. If your firm has a blog (and it should), encourage guest posts. Speak at virtual events and share testimonials from existing clients.
Marketing isn’t about how much money you spend, but the time and effort you put into connecting with clients.
Show them what you’re made of; demonstrate the value you can provide!
Looking for more advice to become a future-ready accounting firm? Check out these articles:
- Is your firm’s partner compensation structure holding you back?
- How to manage your hybrid workforce
- Introducing Sage 20 for 20 – an accountant accelerator program
- The Practice of Now: The essential report for accountants
Becoming a future-ready practice
By 2030, the world of accounting is going to look radically different. Download our guide practical advice and tips on how to prepare for the next decade.