Accountants offer an essential service to private individuals and businesses, so in theory, every accounting firm should be a guaranteed success. Unfortunately, this is not the case. Not all accounting firms go the distance and some fold within a few years or less. In this article, we are going to look at some of the main reasons why CPA firms are less successful than others.
Goals are important in any business. Without goals, you are sailing rudderless. Goals give you something to aim for, and accounting firms with strategic goals in place tend to be more successful in the longterm.
Decide what your goals are when you start the business and communicate your vision to the rest of the team. Your employees will be more engaged if they are on board with your plans and can see the benefits. This blog post from Poe Group talks about starting your own CPA firm.
Diversified Service Offerings
The more services you can offer your customers, the more successful the firm will be. Some small accounting firms only offer a few services, such as tax returns and bookkeeping. There is nothing wrong with that, but it limits your customer base. If you want to grow the business, diversify your services.
Most larger businesses want accountants who can offer the full package, from bookkeeping and payroll to management accounts and auditing. If you don’t have an interest in all of these areas, hire people who do.
The more services you offer, the easier it will be to make more money from each client. For example, it is easier to upsell to clients when you offer a broad range of services. If they contact you about doing the payroll, you can offer to prepare their tax returns or offer management accounting. This increases your profits without a corresponding increase in marketing costs.
Great Customer Service
Customer service is important in any business. If customers are happy, they will continue to use your firm. Unhappy customers have no qualms about switching to a new accountant and are often quick to leave bad reviews online if they feel they haven’t received a good service.
Take steps to monitor how satisfied your customers are at all stages in their journey. Offer valued customers a more personal experience by assigning them one person to handle their account. Contact them regularly to check everything is okay and if they do leave, find out what you could have done to change things.
Treat Employees with Respect
Don’t treat employees like machines or they will leave. Accounting firms are often insanely busy at key times in the year, usually when tax returns are due. It may be tempting to ask employees to put in a lot of overtime in a bid to be more productive, but you need to respect their work-life balance.
Happy employees are loyal and more likely to stick around for longer. This boosts profits for the company and improves customer loyalty. It’s a no-brainer really.
Follow the tips above to ensure your accounting firm is successful long-term.