Being constantly busy is usually a good thing. But sometimes, the fast-paced lifestyle accountants lead gets too hectic, making it tough to deliver quality work on a deadline. Here are some practice management tips that can help your practice run more smoothly, so that you and your staff members can meet your goals while having some room to breathe!
Respect Your Time (or No One Else Will)
In order to be successful, CPAs need to balance their availability with their productivity. In other words, you and your staff members need to be easily accessible to your clients, but you also need to complete projects by their deadlines. One good way to accomplish this is by scheduling certain days of the week for client and vendor meetings only. That way, instead of taking calls at irregular intervals, you’ll be able to do it all in one go. On non-client days, you’ll be able to stay focused on the task at hand without any distractions, making it easier to meet your deadlines. If you need help managing your schedule, online practice management software for accountants can help.
Fine-Tune Your Client Selection Process
As accountants, it’s tempting to accept every potential client that walks through the door. However, before you hand over the paperwork, take some time to discover your client’s budget, needs, and deadline requirements. A strong client selection process can save your firm a lot of headache in the long-term.
You might also want to create a checklist of skills, personality traits and other characteristics that an ideal client would have. Do you want someone who uses a specific accounting software? Are you willing to take on a client who doesn’t know how to operate a smartphone? Will you work with a client who is always in “crisis mode”, or who challenges you at every step? Selecting the right clients can take years of trial and error, but knowing where to invest your time is worth the effort.
Empower Your Staff Members
It can be hard for any business owner to relinquish control over a project, especially when financials are involved. However, micromanaging your staff members doesn’t give them room to develop a personal attachment to your business, or share ideas or insights that may never have occurred to you. It also breeds resentment, and could cause the loss of valuable employees who do not feel appreciated.
Instead, encourage and permit your team members to be involved in all aspects of your firm, from voting on new clients, to choosing marketing materials. If you offer a work environment that encourages staff members to become personally engaged in what they do, you’ll be rewarded with a reliable, dedicated staff that consistently meets your firm’s project deadlines.
Use Appropriate Accounting Practice Management Software
Many firms use practice management software to manage their time, billing, scheduling, and reporting processes. All too often, though, that software is outdated, or was built for another industry. If you want to offer your clients a high-quality service—not to mention give yourself some peace of mind—it’s essential to use practice management technology that’s modern, multi-functional, and built specifically for accounting firms. If you are still relying on outdated tools like Microsoft Excel spreadsheets, you are not taking advantage of tools that could significantly ease your day-to-day operations and boost your bottom line.
Need Practice Management Software for CPAs and Accountants?
If you are an accountant, attorney, or medical professional looking for better time and billing solutions, consider learning more about ImagineTime. ImagineTime is a practice management software that empowers accountants manage their workflows, share tasks, track time and due dates, and generate billing reports. To learn how our software can improve your practice efficiency, communication, and revenue, download a free demo here.