It’s safe to say that there are many problems that accountancy firms have to contend with on a regular basis. While some issues are more prominent than others, it’s clear that things aren’t always plain sailing for practices. With that in mind, here’s an overview of the most common issues accountancy practices are likely to come across at some point.
Manual tasks such as data entry and collection are necessary to the optimal functioning of any accountancy firm. The problem is that such tasks are incredibly time consuming and expensive to maintain. This is why embracing digital processes can be incredibly useful, as it can often halve the amount of time it takes to perform tasks which are usually performed manually.
However, it is important to team up with the right software partner, as this will enable you to gain a deeper understanding of new legislation, at the same time as ensuring that your processes can be futureproofed and incoming legislation can be fully complied with.
Changes in technology can often be somewhat disruptive and burdensome to businesses. But, when newer technology is introduced, a perfect opportunity to evaluate and improve processes arises – whether it’s using technology changes to your advantage or learning how to save time and money.
In addition to this, the fact that cybercrime has consistently risen in both severity and frequency in recent years means that the large amount of sensitive data firms have on clients must be protected at all costs. The perfect way to do this is by ensuring that sufficient staff training policies and optimal IT security practices are implemented.
Over the years, there has been a steady growth in the number of accountancy vacancies that are available, with new accountancy and qualified entrants in high demand. The problem is that there is now a notable talent gap in which the sector’s long-term prospect’s are placed under great strain. Because of this, accountancy firms must remain proactive in order to hire the most talented individuals across the sector.
Ever since the UK voted to leave the European Union in June 2016, there has been plenty of uncertainty for businesses up and down the country. Accountancy firms are certainly no exception to this, with there being no indication of how issues such as financial passporting and tax will be conducted both during and after the transition period of leaving the EU.
Several new opportunities for accounting firms to differentiate themselves from the competition have arisen in recent years; largely down to online reviews which have made providing excellent client service more vital than ever. As a result of this, firms must set their sights on becoming almost an ‘extension’ of the business of their clients to avoid just solely being another service.
In addition to this, accountancy firms that provide value-add services on top of bookkeeping or accounting work will undoubtedly stand out from the crowd, as this is something that has become increasingly desirable over the years.
Commoditization refers to the view that your firm’s services are viewed by potential clients as interchangeable with those of your competitors. In other words, they are commodities, just like crude oil or popcorn. For those who have spent a significant portion of their professional careers attempting to stand apart, this can be a particularly hard pill to swallow.
However, differentiation will ensure that prospects perceive your firm in a more valuable and meaningful way. This could be offering expert services such as Tier 1 Accounting Services, EIS SEIS registrations, and Research & Development Tax credits. The problem is that many financial and accountancy firms struggle to differentiate themselves, with a whole host of partners not knowing how to establish new differentiators or evaluate their current ones.
Services experiencing a downward price pressure
A 2018 study discovered that downward price pressure is the most frequently cited business issue, having not even made the top five the year previous. With increased competition and automation playing an important role, conversations with top management confirmed that there are multiple factors driving this particular concern.
Placing focus on making high-value expertise more visible in the marketplace has proved to be one of the most successful strategies in combating price pressure. Such experts may already be present within your business; with these individuals being invaluable when it comes to boosting the perception of your overall brand among clients and employees alike. What we like to call Visible Experts, these well-known professionals tend to command higher billing rates once their expertise becomes more visible.
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Lanop Outsourcing Chartered Accountants and Tax Advisers for Small and Medium Accountancy firms.
We are your local Outsourcing Chartered Accountants and Tax Advisers based in Putney, London. We are expert XERO Accounting advisors and trusted business advisors in UK.
While we are based in South West London and Central London, our clientele is quite global and our staff is currently working remotely to serve our clients through active Zoom accounts all over UK.
As always, you can reach out to us anytime to discuss any financial, business or accountancy issues you may have in this coronavirus pandemic.