New age accountancy practices have been taking the business world by storm. Things that used to generate a substantial amount of revenue for accountancy companies no longer exist as billable hours because they’ve become automated by software upgrades and advancements. Therefore it is clear that in order for accountancy firms to succeed in business it will be vital for them to keep up and even ahead of technological advancements in software. As well as find new income streams and simultaneously keep abreast of new updates to their invoice app.
Although it may seem like software has reduced the billable hours of accountancy firms it has actually freed up the time. Time usually spent on manual tasks is now available to meet the demands of an always on business world where ‘get back to me next week’ no longer exists. These advancements in technology have opened up a new world of possibilities for business, and should be viewed positively.
Adapt or Age
Adaptability is not usually an attribute you would initially associate with an accountancy firm, however this is exactly the type of trait accountancy businesses will require to succeed in this new landscape. Software, technology and the speed of these advancements are enabling accountants to provide greater transparency, round the clock access of clients data. This means that accountants can work remotely, freeing up wasted travel time, as well as giving them the ability to automate certain services to free up their time to offer an expanded service.
Changing practices such as greater transparency for businesses, don’t need to be greeted with apprehension. These modern additions actually broaden the offering of accountancy firms. To the unknown eye they can actually add value to existing client relationship by making it easier to go the extra mile. For example, because all the data, algorithms and automation are in one place accountancy firms can pull together real time reports or active dashboards in response to a client’s concern or problem. Allowing data to inform decision making in real time.
Furthermore the availability and ease of access to real time data also enables accountancy firms to expand into other key business roles, such as strategic planning, and forecasting. Information is power after all, and this is the age and the area of business which is information rich.
Although in this article there has been a lot of reference to the positives of accountancy software and these technological advancements, it is also worthwhile in considering the negatives. The reason being is that in order to properly service your clients you need to understand what your client’s need and whether there is a risk that they would consider using accounting software in house. This type of business tool is called a SWOT analysis, it helps to reveal your businesses strengths, weaknesses, opportunities and threats in advance and with the aim of changing tact in order to avoid or capitalise on them. By using this analysis correctly it’ll help accountancy firms to succeed by choosing a specific direction in the market that would suit both their clients and their company. As after all a happy client is the best indicator for repeat business.
Remember client relationships aren’t something that can be created and nurtured by software. It is something that has been created from trust and hard work, therefore don’t forget to continue to put in much needed face time with your clients – even when your software allows you to access their information from anywhere. Meeting face to face will allow you to talk to them about their business, its current and future needs and give you the opportunity to be upfront about your expanded service offering and how your business can help.