Five Tools that Advisory-Focussed Firms Need
Take the opportunity to review your advisory tools. With advisory now one of the most lucrative areas of accounting, many firms are looking to expand their advisory offerings. With many digital solutions offering all manner of products to ease the expansion of advisory, it can be hard to work out what is needed.
To succeed, advisory-focussed firms need to have a strong understanding of these five essential components. Let's break them down.
1. Customer Relationship Management (CRM) software: First up is a good CRM. Seems obvious, but there are many practices out there that still use spreadsheets to manage client data. Get a secure, GDPR-compliant, intuitive CRM to unlock advisory potential, keep track of client interactions, manage data, and analyse business relationships. Understand your clients’ journeys through a CRM and see where the potential lies for cross-selling or up-selling to current clients. There are plenty of affordable solutions out there, shop around and see what works for you and your team.
2. Project management software: With multiple employees working across different clients, it is integral to keep track of tasks, deadlines and resources. A rigorous project management tool is an absolute must for firms that work on multiple projects concurrently. Prioritise tasks and ensure that you and your team always know who’s working on what, what work has been done, and what needs doing.
3. Communication and collaboration tools: Advisory unlocks the potential of working with clients across the country and beyond. Advisory-focussed firms need to be prepared to work with remote teams and clients. Take a moment to check that the tools you use are being applied to their full potential. Video-conferencing software, messaging platforms, and online file-sharing, are staples to advisory led firms; everyone needs to work harmoniously with the same tools. Discuss needs with your team and deliver communication and collaboration tools that work for you.
4. Reporting software: Reporting and dashboards are integral to delivering advisory solutions for your clients. There is, however, absolutely no reason to spend your life in an excel spreadsheet! Reporting needs can be served through instant reporting that is integrated to your clients’ source data. Futrli’s reporting solution is fully integrated with Quickbooks Online and Xero. Full integration with Sage is on its way soon, too. Synchronise to your client’s ledger and quickly use drag and drop reporting, templates, formula-driven KPIs and dashboards.
If you're looking for a reporting package that does more than the standard, Futrli is what you'd use.
Steven Millerchip, Partner, Brearley and Co
5. Forecasting software: Again… Get out of Excel! Forecasting software that integrates with your clients’ ledger will save you time and ensure you deliver excellent advisory services. Cash flow forecasting is integral to small businesses’ survival. Understand where your clients are right now, where they are heading, and model scenarios from there. Keeping your clients in the game ensures you have healthy client retention and means you can scale your advisory offerings. Futrli’s cash flow forecasting uses algorithms, not AI, to provide the most reliable predictions. Futrli combines the cash flow statement with data from clients’ P&L and balance sheet for a fully holistic view of your clients’ businesses.
Let advisory guide the solutions you bring to your clients. SMEs are need all the help they can get, and it is important that firms are equipped with the best, most practical, tools to achieve their goals.
In a world of digital solutions, it makes sense to use these to your advantage and cut your workload. You wouldn’t send a fax to contact a client… Likewise, there’s no need to use spreadsheets for your CRM, reporting, forecasting, and project management needs.
If you are looking to expand your advisory offerings, Futrli is the ultimate advisory solution for accountants.
For more information on how Futrli’s instant reporting and forecasts can help your firm, sign up to a free 1:1 demo today.
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