We’re doing something a bit new here up in Pittsburgh for the new podcast this week!
Our new book, “Double Your Accounting Firm: Lessons Learned on How Top Firms Grow Faster, Build Stronger Teams and Increase Profit” was released on Amazon. And I’ve been getting emails like crazy about the value it’s provided.
It’s a compilation of 100+ episodes of the Growing Your Firm Podcast, over 300 articles on this site, plus the tens of thousands of accountants interacted with since the foundation of Jetpack Workflow that’s brought this book to fruition.
It’s not some cheap ebook either. This is a 180 page manual to truly catapult the growth of your accounting firm. I talked with my team and we felt having a series discussing and diving into important elements of the book might provide added value for the price of the book.
And that’s why…I discuss:
- The one law that could double employee efficiency
- The actual job activities for everyone in your firm
- How touch points could bring in more revenue streams without signing a new client
MAKING WORKFLOWS ‘WORK’
You may think this is deja vu…but it bears repeating…when you have the right workflows in place, two things happen:
- Efficiency jumps up
- Employee capacity floodgates burst open
Then, you’re fully maximizing your assets (team members) and getting the most bang for your buck. The problem is this takes planning, time and patience. When work is constantly landing on your team’s desks, something like ‘workflow’ gets bumped in the meeting schedule to next month.
When you shift your mindset about your service offerings…things change. Rather than think you provide a limited scope service…what if you looked at your offerings as a PRODUCT-BASED BUSINESS.
You’re packaging up services like a product and trying to do the job as efficiency as possible. The way to do this is by having an ‘assembly line’ method, as recommended to us by Jeff Borschowa.
A regular product manufactured goes through the same checkpoints until completed. This is how your service offerings should be. If you can’t trust the process, how can you trust the staff to complete it?
EVERYONE’S EXACT ROLE IN THE FIRM:
The way to kickstart this workflow process is defining roles in the firm. When each person ‘does their job,’ the machine runs like clockwork.
Let’s start at the top. We talked with Rob Nixon about this and he gave us pretty straight answers on what each level should expect.
– 60% business development, 30% high-value client work, 10% team building
– Everything else gets delegated down
– Implement systems that Partners pass down
– Find the cracks in the system and update as needed
– Onboarding new clients (more than actual client work)
– Spread out capacity
– Voice of firm for small clients
– Foot soldiers doing the compliance work and delivering most of the services
– Quality touch points with clients
– Paperwork and make sure completed work goes out
– Answering phones
– Everyone above Admin SHOULD NOT be doing non-revenue activities like scanning, sorting, etc.
Practitioners should not be spending time scanning in new client documents. I talk a bit about touch points on this episode because it’s so important.
POWER OF TOUCH POINTS WITH CLIENTS:
You should do these touch points forever after. There is tons of business sitting inside of your firm you haven’t tapped into yet.
Touch points give you access to these missing revenue streams. Scheduling time with clients to discuss their overall business allows you a ‘behind-the-curtain’ peek at what they need help with.
Know this — your clients don’t know all your services. For you, offering payroll as a service is a no-brainer. For clients, they may have zero idea you offer payroll. It’s not a no-brainer for them.
Again, build touch points into your calendar and don’t skip them. Set time in down months to take a swim in the deep end with your clients.
TURNAROUND TIME ON PROJECT WORK:
Turnaround time on a client’s project is a great starting point to measure how to boost efficiency and employee capacity. For many accountants, they can get a million returns out the door on April 15th if they need to.
Yet, without those ‘hard’ deadlines, imagine how much work gets backed up in workflow.
Decreasing turnaround time raises your client’s expectations of your firm. Right now, so much time gets wasted going back-and-forth with clients on missing documents and questions.
ONE LAW TO DOUBLE EMPLOYEE CAPACITY
If employees worked under “Parkinson’s Law”, they would double employee capacity.
See, you’ve probably heard of good ol’ Parkinson’s Law and probably used it a time or two. Parkinson’s Law means time will expand to allow us to get a task done.
In school, you needed a paper done by 9 am Monday. You busted your hump Sunday night and got it done. That’s Parkinson’s Law in full force.
Create internal deadlines and make your team accountable to this. Wasted back-and-forth with clients is REACTIVE.
Reacting to problems leads to client dissatisfaction. Set deadlines once client work walks through the door.
BENEFITS OF INCREASED CAPACITY:
You may be putting off workflow issues to focus on other tasks like compliance or marketing…but, workflow opens up capacity, which makes clients happier, who then refer more to you.
Better workflow opens up space in your team’s calendar to fill with another high-profile client.
Get your workflow fixed by sitting down with your team and getting a global picture of it. From a prospect calling up through delivering a tax return. Every step in the process needs to be scrutinized. Damien Greathead recommends, when in doubt, ask the admin team who know everything!
IF YOU FIND THIS PODCAST FORMAT HELPFUL OR NOT HELPFUL…
SEND AN EMAIL TO David@jetpackworkflow.com and let me know your thoughts!
On July 25, 2017, our book “Double Your Accounting Firm: Lessons Learned on How Top Firms Grow Faster, Build Stronger Teams and Increase Profit” was released on Amazon. Hardcover copies will be available in the coming weeks.
With this book, we plan to add even more value to your accounting firm besides just workflow processes.
- Page 52: Actual scripts to move clients into the more profitable fixed and value pricing model
- Page 89: Top 2 crazy good strategies to get new clients in your firm this month
- Page 136: Step-by-step process to meet and close new prospects (scripts and blueprint included)
- Page 220: Building out 6-figure profit centers this year to double your firm