Grow your firm through additional services

As with the start of any new year, accountants are resolving to maximize resources to help their clients stay competitive and improve market standing Dr. Chandra Bhansali, AccountingWeb

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Accountants should think not only about how they’re going to survive their busiest time of year, but also about generating a perennial revenue stream beyond tax season.

A recent survey of 301 managing partners of small accounting firms found that seven out of ten managing partners expect it will be more difficult for their firms to make money in 2016 than it was in 2015. However, opportunities to make money may not be so difficult to come by.

While taking on additional clients is a viable option to increase revenue, a better option is to offer additional services to existing clients. By encouraging existing clients to expand the services they use, firms can easily create more revenue streams for their practices with minimal lift. Since payroll is so highly intertwined with clients’ overall expenses and tax liabilities, it is a natural fit for accountants to also manage this function for their clients.

Knowing that additional ways of raising the bottom line exist, the next step is to find the resources needed to add those services. The trick for accountants to offer additional services without adding any staff is to focus on streamlining. By reducing the time spent on existing services and finding ways to provide additional services with minimal time and effort, adding services without adding staff becomes possible. The right professional cloud solutions can help you accomplish both.

It is widely-recognized that the primary source of wasted time in accounting is dealing with the errors clients make. Using a professional accounting system that lets accountants work collaboratively with their clients and gives them the ability to customize the system for each client, and that gives clients access only to the functions they can perform, enables accountants to drastically reduce client errors and regain significant time.

Professional accounting systems also make it much faster and easier to produce customizable financial statements, and accountants can take advantage of time-saving features, such as bank feeds that reduce the data entry time needed for the write-up work they perform for clients who write manual checks – time they can use to offer complete accounting services and payroll services.

Cloud-based professional accounting systems can also help accountants offer payroll and complete accounting services faster and easier by making it possible for accountants’ staff to do what clients’ staff or their external bookkeepers currently do – only faster, easier and more accurately and without leaving the office. Cloud-based payroll solutions created exclusively for accountants have also introduced a high level of automation in payroll processing, allowing accountants to offer highly profitable payroll services with minimal staff time.

These systems make it possible for accountants to generate significant additional revenues by offering payroll and complete accounting services without adding any stress to their staff. In fact, streamlining work flow and eliminating redundancies and unnecessary work actually increases staff satisfaction.

As a bonus, cloud-based professional accounting solutions include analytical tools to monitor client key performance indicators (KPIs) and cash flow with minimal effort. These value-added services provide additional sources of increased profits while strengthening client relationships.