GROWING YOUR PROFESSIONAL SERVICES FIRM WITH FULL-SERVICE TAX AND ACCOUNTING
Professional services companies have some unique challenges. With multiple clients and various different ways of billing, keeping track of income and expenses can be hard. So how do you manage your accounts?
UNDERSTANDING THE NEEDS OF PROFESSIONAL SERVICES FIRMS
Professional services businesses are all different, so there's no one-size-fits-all solution. Still, there are some things you will have in common with others. Look at your business from an accounting perspective. You'll find you need some or all of the following:
- Billing based on time, project, retainer, work completed or any other method you choose.
- Ability to assign costs to clients. Travel, expenses and other costs need to be accurately categorized. You don't want to bill the wrong client – or forget to bill at all.
- Cashflow reports, so you know what's coming in and going out. Without this you might find yourself in financial difficulties.
- Integration with PayPal and other online payment systems, for quick and easy payment. This will help you receive money quickly, and also pay subcontractors and suppliers.
- Triggers to remind you when to create and send invoices. It's all too easy to miss one when you have many clients.
- Ability to scale up to handle as many clients as you will ever have.
- Options for managing retainers and offsetting funds against them.
Perhaps most important of all, you need to track the value of each piece of work you do. Without this knowledge, you won't know which clients are the most profitable for you. And if you want your business to grow, profitable clients are what you need.
A FULL SERVICE ACCOUNTING ADVISOR FOR PROFESSIONAL SERVICES FIRMS
Taxanista, a nationwide tax, accounting, and consulting firm specializes in helping established professional services firms manage an entire range of accounting advisory solutions. By focusing on the unique requirements of professional services firms -- from attorneys and graphic artists to landscape architects, Amazon eCommerce sellers, and much more -- Taxanista can bring their wealth of experience to professional services firms.
“When people start a professional services firm, tax and accounting are necessary evils”, says Angela Sticca Snyder of Taxanista. “Like most firms, they probably handled these vital functions in house. Or you hired a bookkeeper to handle day-to-day accounting."
“But as the business begins to grow--more clients, employees, maybe even different locations--your accounting requirements spiraled exponentially. So instead of having some part-time person keep your books, they’re at the point where they need a much more complete tax and accounting solution, a true advisor to help you not only keep on top of this complexity, but actually help them grow their business”
NOT ALL ADVISORY SERVICES ARE THE SAME
A lot of advisory firms can offer full range solutions. What’s key for growing professional services firms is how they deliver their services. “Starting out with a full service offering is the buy-in,” comments Snyder. “Just as important, however, is top-notch customer service and it’s what we pride ourselves on at Taxanista.”
At Taxanista, superior customer service starts with availability and communication. According to Snyder, “We want our clients to be able to pick up the phone, send us an email, even Skype us anytime they have questions or need an expert eye. Conversely, we feel it’s very important to constantly reach out to our clients to make sure their business is running at peak efficiency. And if not, help them strategize how to get back on track and really grow.”
LEVERAGING MODERN ACCOUNTING TECHNOLOGY
Taxanista has proven that by using cutting-edge technology, they can provide services faster, with less hassle, and help make their clients more productive. As a Xero Partner, Taxanista uses Xero cloud accounting to provide a wide range of accounting solutions to its clients.
“We chose Xero as our accounting solution because it’s ease of use and intuitive nature is second to none,” says Snyder. “If you’re going to go to the trouble of implementing a technology solution it should do what you need it to do out of the box and every time you log on. Xero fills all the boxes and more, even to the point we have a service where we will convert client QuickBooks data to Xero. It’s that good.”
IN IT FOR THE LONG HAUL
Similarly,education -- based on technology, naturally -- plays an important role in helping Taxanista clients. The advisory firm offers webinars and coaching to help professional services firms understand more complex issues, such as getting ready for year-end and setting up Xero banking, and provide access to YourXeroHero.com for a wealth of Xero-produced education content.
“Nothing is going to replace experience and excellent customer service,” concludes Snyder, “But using Xero and other cloud technologies to deliver them faster and more efficiently is part of our DNA. It’s the way of the future and we like to think Taxanista is already there.”