How To Track Thousands Of Clients & Never Miss A Deadline
Firm: LWS Tax & Accounting
Firm size: 10 People, 2,000+ clients
Service Category: Tax, Payroll, Bookkeeping
Blake Shaffer, CPA is the founder and owner of LWS Tax & Accounting. Launched in in 2008 (not the best timing!), Blake manage to not only survive the great recession, but went on to build a thriving practice.
LWS Tax & Accounting is based in Springfield Ohio, and now employs over 10 people. They focus on serving regional small business owners and individuals. Aside from their impressive organic growth, LWS is also known for their “quirky” marketing, such as their tax season music videos.
Challenge they were facing:
While they were growing, Blake was struggling to maintain visibility over all the client deadlines and requests they were receiving. He had tried other applications, but always fell back to their spreadsheet as the source of record (despite the rest of his office being cloud focused). Blake found Jetpack Workflow in 2015 and began his free trial.
Pain Points: Growing firm means additional due date tracking, and was manually updating spreadsheets (time-consuming) and was prone to letting client work fall through the cracks.
When we first started with Blake at LWS Tax, his system was cobbled together using spreadsheets (despite being entirely in the cloud for all other aspects of his business).
When we sat down with him, he told us about these three obstacles that blocked him in the past:
- Able to create a standardized process that recurred with each client engagement
- Be able to instantly see what was in danger of falling through the cracks, and track client updates and statuses.
- Finding a cloud-based solution that was simple for his team to use
Adopting Jetpack Workflow:
Given the pain point was so acute for his firm, Blake wanted to implement right away. He actually blocked off the weekend as soon as he signed up, and by Monday, he had the system setup. For minor questions, he stayed in contact with our support team. And for team training, he booked live walkthroughs with our specialists.
“Within 4 days we were able to load 1,500+ clients and all due dates into Jetpack Workflow”
Results to Date:
They have been able to scale up to now serve over 2,000 clients without missing a deadline. Blake, the owner, has completely removed himself from day to day client work. He now explores firm expansion opportunities, launches new marketing projects, and invests and advises on new ventures.
“Within a week of adopting Jetpack Workflow we were able to do something amazing … get rid of using spreadsheets to track client work!”
“Using Jetpack Workflow was business changing for us. We went from a firm that was missing things and letting things fall through the cracks to not missing a deadline in over 2 years!”
As you can imagine, moving from a spreadsheet system can be a challenging feat, so I wanted to lay out the implementation path that he took.
- Using the Jetpack client importer, he moved his list of clients from spreadsheets into Jetpack (time commitment: Approx. 1-3 hours)
- He built out his workflow templates and began testing “assigning” work to clients (1-2 days)
- He invited his team on the platform to judge it’s usability, and to edit any existing templates (3-5 days)
And this was before we rolled out a complimentary “Done For You” program, which can dramatically reduce your time involvement, and we can jump straight to part 3.
“Their customer services is unbelievable. If we had a question, within a day we’d have a video showing us the answer we needed”
Getting the team setup
While endless features sound like a great idea when a new product meets the team, they typically care about one thing: how quickly can I learn and use this new tool?
When Blake was setting up his team, he was mindful that not every team member will adopt the tool at the same rate. This is why we focus on team members reviewing one (at most two) tabs in the system… Jobs & Tasks
For a micro “big picture” view of work assigned to a team member, the Jobs tab is the perfect place. Track work progress, so what’s getting stuck, or moving along at the right pace.