We understand that running an accounting business can feel like being pulled in a thousand directions. Your firm juggles multiple clients, each making demands on your time and energy. In addition, you need to stay focused on how you can grow your organization while making sure your own accounts are in order.
To successfully grow your accounting business, you must take advantage of systems that can help you turn it into a well-oiled machine. The key to your success is always to be working better, not harder.
Success often means creating good financial, human resource, marketing, and leadership development systems, which decrease your stress levels and increase your focus. You do not want to lose customers because important data was misplaced, important deadlines were forgotten, or your employees are not working to their best ability.
Follow The Money: An Accountant for the Accountant
Running an accounting business means you already have a deep understanding of financial matters. But don’t overlook your financial health as you are helping other organizations with theirs. You probably shouldn’t run an accounting firm if you do not know what bills are due, how much cash you have on hand, who owes you money, and when you should expect to see that money. “Money makes the world go round,” and that old saying was never more accurate than when you are running your own accounting firm.
Having sound financial systems in place is especially important when you have a small staff. When working with multiple clients, you need someone who will be on top of accounts receivable. While you might currently manage your books, consider outsourcing this work. By hiring someone else to do your firm’s accounting, you can focus on your clients instead. In addition, using an outside accountant increases your firm’s accountability and makes your firm look more professional.
Build a Community: Human Resources
Your accounting business is likely to be small, with only a handful of employees. No matter how small your firm is, it would be best to create a healthy Human Resources (HR) department. If you’re small, your HR department could be a single person whose focus is payroll and signing checks. Alternatively, you might consider outsourcing this service, too. A payroll service will calculate and cut paychecks, report payroll taxes, and pay those taxes at the right time.
If your accounting firm is larger, your HR department might take on other roles such as training, hiring, and firing employees, along with handling employee complaints. When you are onboarding new employees, your HR department may help them fill out the paperwork they need to be paid, sign up for healthcare or other benefits, and so on.
Tell Your Story: Marketing
Today your marketing can include blog posts, social media, newsletters, or old-fashioned mailings, each with its own style and tone. The message you tweet is different from the message you have on a flier for a business conference or convention. To succeed, you must have a clear understanding of your clients and where those clients can be found.
One form of marketing that every accounting business–large or small–needs is a website. Building a website used to be costly and time-consuming. Fortunately, however, technology has caught up with demand, and you should be able to easily find user-friendly solutions for creating tax and accounting sites. Not only do these website platforms make it easy for you to create a website, but they also make it easy for your customers to navigate. And they’re built with security so that your clients can send you sensitive financial information through your website.
Creating a Family: Leadership Development
Finally, even if your accounting firm is small, it is important to provide opportunities for employee leadership development. If you provide such development, you will find your employees feel less burnout, enjoy coming to work more, and can do their best on their tasks. The type of development you provide will depend on your business but can include covering the costs of accounting exams or certifications or paying for employees to go to accounting-related conferences where they can learn best practices. Leadership development is a great way to ensure your accounting firm runs like a well-oiled machine.