When I was asked to write a post about how technology has changed the relationship between accountants and their clients, I thought: “Easy! This will be fun!”
Then I really started thinking about it, and I realized that there are SO many ways to come at the subject. Do I look at all types of accounting professionals, or just one? The type of services? How data is exchanged? How information is gathered? What point in time do I start?
I thought the best way to approach this subject would be to keep it simple, and speak about what I know, including how technology has changed me as a bookkeeper, how it’s changed the services I offer and how we deal with data and gather information. The best place to start, I suppose, is always at the beginning, right?
I was born in Michigan, back in 1974…
Just kidding! We’ll skip past the tap lessons and thinking I would be a pharmacist, and get right into how I had to take a crash course in technology in order to find a solution that would allow me to best work remotely with my clients while I was on leave after my second kid was born.
It was the need to find solutions that would work for ALL of my clients while I was off after my son was born back in 2009 that prompted a very unexpected shift in the type of practice I had. Up until that point, I’d been in business about five years, providing bookkeeping and payroll services for about 10-15 clients, and doing all of it on site at their offices. I had decided that for the short term, I needed to find a way to work with each existing client on a remote basis, and for the long term, I would use these solutions to do that with any NEW clients.
Without getting too much into the details, I quickly found that I had a genuine knack for finding the applications and technology that made it easy for my clients and myself to get the best out of the remote relationship, and over the last five years, it’s completely altered the direction that my practice has gone. By utilizing tools like QuickBooks Online, and Exact Online software, I’m able to give my client the flexibility they need, as well as the access I need to do my job – get their books right, so they can work better, faster, smarter. By doing my job efficiently, my clients have the tools and information at their fingertips to make better decisions about the direction their business should move.
Kildal Services LLC has gone from being strictly a one woman bookkeeping/payroll service provider, using the systems put in place by the client, regardless of how efficient they may or may not be, to a three person distributed team that still offers those core services, but also provides the consulting to get our clients the process and the applications to get these core services delivered to them. Ultimately, it’s technology that now allows us accounting professionals – whether it’s a bookkeeping practice like mine, or a tax practitioner – to continually improve upon these services and work as part of a collaborative network to help small businesses become successful and grow.