Four in five UK businesses have at least one cloud solution as part of their wider business systems.
That means your clients will definitely have an opinion or two on how to handle their cloud bookkeeping. But letting your clients lead the cloud transition is one of the key cloud bookkeeping mistakes.
You want to provide the best possible solution for each of your clients. But you also need to make sure that this doesn’t stop you providing the same level of service to the rest of your clientele. So how do you make sure your clients don’t get in the way?
The best solution for your clients and your firm
Whatever cloud platform you opt for (and there are plenty to choose from), the software has got to work efficiently for you, your team and your business clients.
Be wary of demanding clients who ask for a particular software solution. This app may work well for this specific business, but it doesn’t mean it’s the ideal solution for your practice – or the other businesses you service.
There is also a difference between the solution that suits them managing their own books, and the solution that enables you to provide the best service.
In this scenario, it is your responsibility to become the expert your clients need. This means you need to:
- Research the field
- Identify the needs of the firm
- Find the solution that’s the best possible fit for all your clients.
Make use of trial offers on apps, test them and find those that add genuine value for your firm and clients.
Removing the roadblocks
Not everyone will be an eager cloud adopter. Businesses that are less tech-savvy, or less open to change, will need to be convinced of the merits of cloud accounting.
Some clients will resist the move to cloud technology. Don’t let this hold you back – stay at the forefront and don’t worry that a few clients are behind the curve.
These fears are often based on a misunderstanding of the nature of working on cloud systems. The reality, however, is that any client who can use email or online banking has the skills to use cloud accounting. For example, Receipt Bank’s award-winning mobile app makes submission so easy that even the most technophobe client can do it.
While there is an incentive to move to the cloud sooner rather than later, moving too quickly is not going to help your practice or your clients.
Rushing into things will likely leave you with a tangled system combining cloud technology and old systems that adds value for nobody. Moreover, your clients will get a negative impression of cloud technology which will make the move harder later.
Educate yourself before you bring solutions to your client – and ensure they deliver the specific value they need. Even better, try out the available solutions yourself first. All Receipt Bank partners get a free practice account to manage their own expenses – so you can learn from hands-on experience.
It’s also useful to think a few steps ahead. Consider how you want to grow and the solutions you’ll need to achieve this. For example, do you want to offer more detailed reporting? You’ll need a cloud reporting app, like CrunchBoards, Fathom or Spotlight Reporting, to do this.
When difficult clients resolutely refuse to go onto the cloud, you have to either persuade them or lose them. Before they impact on your service levels, turn them around, or fire them.
Case study – Putting your money where your mouth is
Cornish Accounting moved to the cloud and began using Receipt Bank to manage their own internal expenses – learning first-hand the benefits of a streamlined data management solution.
“We started using Receipt Bank to track our own internal accounts, which cut down admin time by a third. Now when we meet clients, we can put our money where our mouth is. When they ask what difference Receipt Bank will make to their business, we can point to our own experience, which really builds trust, ” explains Paul Miller, Managing Director of Cornish Accounting.
Find out the 5 cloud bookkeeping mistakes you need to avoid in our free ebook.