The accounting profession is changing quickly, and firms that stick with the status quo are already struggling to meet key goals and growth targets. Getting ahead and staying ahead now require maintaining a strong focus on efficiency and a willingness to embrace change. Recently, part 4 of our Firm Operations webinar series looked at the importance of modernizing operations in accounting firms.
During the webinar, Wolters Kluwer Tax & Accounting product line manager Damon Russel interviewed Cody Page, Chief Operating Officer of Peterson Sullivan, LLP. They discussed changes firms can make to improve efficiency, and how to best approach modernizing a firm’s processes.
Efficiency: Rethinking processes from the ground up
Forward-thinking firms perform better than firms with more mainstream operations. Not only do early adopter firms report higher revenue, but they also earn higher profits. The difference is likely due to increased efficiency that comes from adopting technology early.
However, according to Page, it’s important to start with a firm’s processes, and determine how technology can cut waste. The technology alone won’t get firms to higher profits.
Innovation: Removing barriers to client service
When it comes to modernizing operations, nobody has higher expectations than a firm’s clients. That’s why software vendors are introducing many new technologies aimed at improving collaboration between the firm and its clients. The less friction in any interaction with your clients, the better. As a result, Russel explained, technologies like epayments and electronic organizers don’t just help firms work more efficiently. They also help improve client satisfaction.
Change Management: Guiding the firm to better efficiency
Workflow changes are never easy. Page recommends clearly defining stakeholders and project scope, and only tackling one piece at a time. Champion committees can help involve a wide variety of staff in identifying and solving problems. But executive commitment is also required to ensure change management is embraced at all levels of the firm.
Find out how to get started modernizing operations in your firm. Watch the webinar.