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accountants and bookkeepers

5 telling clues your technology is working for you

With so many different tech products available to accountants and bookkeepers, it can be hard to know what will be a good fit for your practice and your clients.

Alan Fitzgerald, tech agnostic accounting advisor at Practice Connections Advisory and QuickBooks Online ProAdvisor Program, says that there are five questions you can ask to determine whether your technology stack will support your future success. These are:

  1. Is your technology helping your business to be more productive?
  2. Are your clients benefitting from it?
  3. Are updates to software seamless?
  4. Is your IT spend dropping over time?
  5. Is your tech freeing you up to work on your business growth?

If you answered no to any of the questions above, it could be time for you to review the technology that underpins your practice and ensure that it supports you to thrive in the long run.  

1. Your tech is fit for purpose

Having accurate, reliable and relevant software is essential to operate a successful accounting or bookkeeping business. It should support your growth trajectory and make your life easier, says Fitzgerald at the 2022 Get Connected event, hosted by Intuit QuickBooks and Business Australia.

2. Your tech helps you remain competitive

One of the key messages from the session was a reminder about the importance of businesses developing a vision for their technology landscape. What’s key is to ensure you are using the right software to access data to stay competitive and run the business successfully. Your software should also allow you to have meaningful discussions with your client base.

Once you’ve got the basics right, the next step is to ensure the software is helping the business to be as productive as it can be. 

“Many of the firms I see have productivity issues,” Fitzgerald says. “I encourage them to be as efficient as possible in sourcing the data they need to run their business, process work, get it out to the clients and manage clients effectively.”

It’s imperative that accounting and bookkeeping firms have access to the right software for their business to enable them to function smoothly, efficiently and productively.

3. You take advantage of software updates

Keeping up to date with software upgrades makes your business hum and supports your ability to work in tandem with clients. 

“Where the software world can be of benefit to you is the fact it changes and gives you opportunities to be more efficient,” Fitzgerald says. 

Plug-ins and connecting apps are key here because they are routinely and automatically updated. “The great thing about apps is they connect with your main software to make your life easier,” he adds.

Take the stress out of managing your firm

4. You spend less on IT

Constantly updating software programs can be a huge burden on businesses. But working with a cloud provider such as Intuit QuickBooks means advisors don’t need to spend money on these upgrades. Instead, they can benefit from the inbuilt product updates cloud accounting software provides. 

“Accounting firms and bookkeepers typically have an IT budget allocation on an annual basis. Replacing old systems with digital, online solutions will slash your tech expense over time,” Fitzgerald says. 

“There is no need to buy new hardware. You don't have to maintain servers and updates are automatic,” he adds. 

5. Your tech supports your business growth

Fitzgerald’s final piece of advice is to review the business’s growth plans and work out how technology can support them.

“Look at what your software is doing to support your growth,” he advises. For instance, it should be able to generate data to tell you which client segments are the most profitable, which are not, lines of business that generate the highest margin and even how much time is spent on tasks. All this information should feed into your growth strategy.

If you keep up to date with the latest software, understand how you can use it for your own and your clients’ benefit, your practice will thrive now and well into the future.

Let’s recap

Tech should be an enabler for your practice, an asset that is the bedrock on which everything rests. Take some time to review the five measures above and see how they apply to your practice. If they don’t, it might be time for a strategic tech review.

Intuit QuickBooks is a one-stop shop that supports accountants and bookkeepers to manage their business, run their clients and meet their compliance obligations. Contact us today to find out more about how Intuit QuickBooks can transform your practice and support your clients to be the best they can be.

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