Accountants: What are the Benefits of a Clear Roadmap and a Robustly Managed Plan for SMEs
Accountants are well aware that the definition of a Small or Medium Sized Enterprise (SME) or a Small or Medium Business (SMB) is somewhat flexible and can be defined by:
From an accountant’s perspective, consulting on a business’ strategy for the next few months or years has definite benefits – in fact, this article outlines a number of reasons why it is in an accountant’s best interest to work toward a strong roster of business clients to advise year round instead of only at tax time.
The Whole Year ‘Round
Instead of a retrospective visit as tax time looms, change your clients’ perception of you to that of a year-round adviser and reap the benefits.
Helping a business identify, articulate and solve their pinch-points and challenges is a new process for some and requires switching to a mindset of growth. It also shows commitment, empathy and willingness to undergo the sometimes painful strategic process alongside their clients.
By bringing challenging issues to light and then making a plan to fix or exceed them, your client gains the tools and goals to become a healthier business.
Offering More Services
A plan to manage business clients’ goals and mitigate issues requires mapping then meeting process goals using a planning document. View this as a ‘living’ document and set parameters that stakeholders will view it on a monthly basis. Naturally this is going to require that the accountant and client remain in near contact.
In addition to an estimated increase of a minimum 12 – 36 billable hours per year, this active relationship is a good way to probe business problems as well as sell your value and services to the client – in short, it allows the accountant to stay actively tuned in to their clientele.
Providing Increased Value
Coaching clients about a strong cash flow management plan and staying accountable to it is another area where accountants are well suited. Just as with a strategic business plan, it’s important to discuss billable hours at the outset with your client and position yourself properly on the cost vs risk continuum for every client.
Clients who adopt an accountant’s year-round growth mindset will be poised to identify and act on opportunities as they come up, and will strategize around project timelines, capacity issues, and unavoidable holdups. The cost of a few more hours a year with your accountant is far outweighed by the benefits that come from this strategic relationship.
Growing with Your Clients
Having a direct relationship with your client as you become involved in their growth positions you as a trusted thought-leader and strategist who is well-acquainted with their unique business. This has the benefit of ensuring that as your customer grows, they won’t outgrow you and your services.
Find out how Dryrun can help your clients with their cash flow and supercharge your roll as an advisor.