The Best Firms Use the Right Tools for Each Job
At Liscio we talk with thousands of accounting professionals each month. Many are already using Liscio, while others are prospective members of our family. Some firms are very large while others are made up of just one or two people. Some do tax, while others do not. It’s a diverse and wonderful group of accountants, bookkeepers and tax professionals that we spend our days with, and we wouldn’t have it any other way. use the right tool for each job
When we look at what unites them (versus how diverse their practices are) there are two main things that immediately become clear.
- These firms are dedicated to creating the best possible experience for their clients and their staff, and,
- They choose and utilize the best tool for each job they do.
“Bring your Own Back Office”- You choose what works best
Top firms recognize that the efficiency and happiness of their knowledge workers is paramount. By recognizing that professionals in client accounting, tax, audit, and advisory have different needs, tailoring their software choices to maximize productivity makes sense. And because Liscio works with all back-office software, firms simply choose the back-office systems that work best for their needs and use Liscio to provide a seamless front-office experience. They aren’t locked into an all-in-one solution with a particular strength but several weaknesses. Our clients bring their own back office solutions and continue to use them because Liscio works with anything that has a print-to-pdf function. We love being able to tell them that they’re in control of everything they do in their back office and no change is needed there!
Front-Office Software that really does the job – “This is Client Experience 2.0”
Front-office software is where the client and the firm actually connect with each other. Think of it as your digital front office. Clients ask questions and a staff person answers them. Or, a staff person has a question for the client, and the client answers it quickly. Documents are exchanged securely and easily – sometimes the client is sending them for the firm to process, sometimes staff are sending them to the client for review, and some documents are electronically signed. And of course, task lists, notes, and uploaded files keep everyone informed and on track. The main point here is that the work itself is done in the “back office” and the client is only involved in the pieces that truly make sense for them to be involved in (the “front office”).
We are very fortunate at Liscio to be speaking with firms who want to ensure that their dedication to excellence is carried through every touch point they have with their clients. They value being able to offer clients technology that works every bit as well as the other technology they are using in their lives — whether it be depositing a check online, staying up to date with the news delivered to their phone, or ordering dinner with an app. These are all examples of Client Experience 2.0, and the simplicity and delight translate into an amazing front-office experience for their clients. For these firms, it’s all about being accessible to clients on the go and fitting seamlessly into their lives. Imagine if your client carried you around in their pocket and could send you a document securely using just their phone? Think of how much faster you could move if it was drop-dead easy for clients to work with you! If firms make it easy for their clients to deal with them, they are also able to move faster and they get more done.
What do firms use if they are not focused on giving their clients an awesome front-office experience? How do they communicate with their clients?
Well, they predominantly use email and a portal. And that’s where things kind of fall apart. The challenge with using email to request things from clients is that they are on the go, and their days are busy. They typically don’t work at a desk all day so dealing with a list of documents sent by email, with a link to the portal to upload them, is not easy for them to take care of. All they have in their hand is their mobile phone. So they see your email and they know right away that they can’t take care of it from where they are. Their only option is to leave it in their inbox and make a mental note to get back to it later. Then their busy life takes over and that important email slips lower and lower in the inbox until it’s forgotten entirely. Then the practitioner sends another email! And the cycle continues until finally the client can get to a scanner and their desk, and send the documents that are needed. And even then they usually need help to log in and upload the documents. It causes a lot of frustration on both sides and a lot of time spent waiting for documents, not to mention chasing clients to send them.
Client Experience 2.0 is about using the right tool for the job.
Clients need EASY and Client Experience 2.0 delivers. Not only does a dedicated front-office experience delight clients and keep them engaged, it also frees the firm up to focus on tailoring their back-office solutions to meet their specific needs. As new business opportunities arise, the firm is able to pick and swap tools without having to worry about changing how their clients work with them. The best-of-breed strategy keeps the right tools in the right hands every time. And that’s where Liscio fits in.
To see how Liscio can help you provide a world-class front office experience to your clients, book a personalized demo here.