Mzomuhle Ndlangisa is an accountant, BAP (SA) designation holder and owns an accounting practice. WorthWorld Consulting offers accounting, tax and advisory services in Pretoria and Durban where their offices are based.

Accounting Weekly asked Mzomuhle to share his recipe for running a successful practice, below are major contributory factors in the running of a successful practice according to Ndlangisa.

Before getting into the details of what you need to run a practice, you need to consider the people you are hiring. Are they suitable for the cause? Are they capable of executing the mandate? Do they belong to a professional body? These are questions you need to ask yourself and ensure that your talent acquisition strategy is good.

As a business owner, you then need to assess your resources, do you have the right systems and software to help your business? Upon figuring that out, we can get into the practicality of running a practice smoothly.

You also need to ensure compliance with all the relevant regulations, acts and standards set, belong to an accounting body and be aware and informed of the regulators that your client is regulated by to help your clients to maintain compliance.

Onboarding the client

The first step when you get a new client is to understand the needs of the client and present an engagement letter that will specify the client’s expectations and your delivery, this should be signed. When you have learned the nature of the client’s needs, you then allocate the case to the relevant staff member who is suitable for the case.

It is vital to educate the client so they understand the value of the service that you will be providing, this happens as you build their profile in your database. We always make our clients aware of the tasks that they can do on their own to avoid us charging them, this promotes loyalty and trust between us and the client.

Client retention

Retaining a client is crucial as they are the source of income for your business. The following factors apply in keeping your clients happy:

  • Deliver accordingly – make sure that you deliver the service that they asked for and excellently.
  • Deliver in time – stick to the time frame that you promised your client.
  • Do not serve if you do not have the capacity – you can always refer them to someone who can provide that service instead.
  • Keep the client in business to keep yourself in business.

“I also used to host annual gala dinners for my clients. They would get the chance to network with each other and share interests. But due to the pandemic, I am unable to do so. This served as a way to strengthen client relationship and a marketing strategy.” Mzomuhle added

Employee retention

Employees have to be skilled and capable. To maintain that we have a compliance officer who handles both clients and employees. Checking the employees CPD hours and making sure that they upskill.

We have sessions where we discuss our client cases, this enables us to share knowledge, check on case progress and employee performance focusing on key performance areas (KPS). We also have team sessions that are relaxed to promote cohesion and keep up the team spirit. We have a case register that has duty allocation, draft procedures on solving cases and keeps track of how everyone performs.

Educational fund

We care about upskilling employees that is why we have an educational trust fund for them. Anyone who wants to upskill, study further and even get a license. We provide study leave and give incentives. This way, our employees are well taken care of and growing professionally to meet the ongoing advancement of the practice.

Remote working

All employees should have formal settings where they can engage with the clients. We encourage them to carry themselves well in the public eye especially on social media because what they do reflects on us.

Corporate look

We maintain a good corporate look and feel because taking care of our brand plays a big role in the marketing of our business.

Over and above all we give our clients the platform to grow us. We give them the chance to criticise us and when they do, we can see where we need to improve and possibly avoid repeating mistakes in future.

Provided that a client does no longer want us to serve them, we have an exit interview to understand their reasons and possibly keep them but in rare cases, when they leave, we make sure that the handing over process to their new service provider is smooth. We keep their files and we are open to them contacting us about any information they might need from the time we were of service.

 Ndlangisa’s ways of running a practice have served him well and they are the recipe to his business success. He also is a SAIBA member who utilises the SAIBA Academy resources to upskill himself and has access to the practice support library that SAIBA provides to their members, keeping him aware of all regulations, acts and accounting standards.