How Linford Grey balance technology with humanity for accounting excellence
Technology’s role in society is growing exponentially more complex, and naturally, there are different opinions on the right way to handle its increased presence. And in the accounting world, it’s no different. There are myriad technology companies reimagining what it means to be an accountant.
But Adam Pritchard, Founder and Managing Director at Linford Grey, doesn’t fear the true accountant’s role is in danger. He knows that strategizing and implementing the right technology needs a human touch. It is about striking a balance and using tech to facilitate human greatness.
Building a business that works for everyone
Though they are based out of Leicestershire in the UK, Linford Grey is fully cloud-based and digital. They have a carefully curated tech stack that enables them to deliver fantastic results for clients, regardless of their location.
Though a few clients have expressed to him a preference for a local, in-person accountant, Adam is confident (and has proven) there’s nothing a client will get from an in-person meeting he can’t offer them online—aside from a commute.
Operating his firm in this way has allowed Adam to help clients all over the UK, including a few who have business overseas.
The Linford Grey team
Quality over quantity
When Linford Grey began gaining momentum, Adam considered acquiring other practices and taking a quantitative approach to clients. But he has since refocused on providing premium services to fewer, rather than adequate service to many.
“I don’t want 600 clients that I see once a year,” he says.
“I want regular client relationships. I want people invested in us and the value that we add and I want to be invested in them, contribute and deliver great work.”
Set up for success
Adam started with Karbon before he had even hired his first employee. He was determined to find a solution that was elegant, scalable, and well-suited to his tech stack.
Edge over the competition
“Karbon is the perfect place for me to see where my information is going. Plus I can set the workflows to run automatically. I integrate my Ignition onboarding software with Karbon to set work items up immediately, then I set up repeat schedules, and client compliance is never missed,” Adam says.
He enjoys software that communicates well with other tech, and of course, facilitates great communication with the clients themselves.
“I can also automate some of my communications and data collection, which is fantastic and has allowed me to immediately scale,” he says.
Built for the future
It was scalability that really endeared Karbon to Adam. He needed to be able to trust that his practice management solution would fastidiously handle automations and services; that nothing would fall through the cracks, especially as his client base grew.
“All the compliance tasks are in Karbon and they just pop up in the month, they’re automatically assigned and we know what we’ve got to do. I can do that anywhere, everywhere, and for whichever size client base we end up having.”
“When I found Karbon, I thought, this is how I will move the business forward.”
Finding sure footing
Linford Grey’s relationship with technology can be distilled into two concepts:
Without those two things, they wouldn’t have been able to function at the high level their clients are accustomed to.
Trusting in technology
When you automate tasks, you are vouching for that automation as an extension of your firm.
For example, if it’s time for a client to pay corporation tax and you’ve scheduled reminders for the client to fill in the appropriate forms, you need to be sure that those reminders are going to be correct. If they fail, in your client’s eyes, part of your firm has failed. So it’s critical that the tech you choose to use is robust and meets you and your clients’ expectations.
“Karbon is the main vehicle for scaling our business. Without that practice management software solution in place, we wouldn’t be able to make the claims that we make,” Adam says. “We wouldn't be able to design the service levels that we have designed. We wouldn't be able to stand behind our offer. Karbon is the engine behind all that.”
“It’s the consistency and the certainty that Karbon affords us that allows us to be bold, and facilitates us to deliver.”
Balancing technology and humanity
Adam and his team have carefully selected their app stack to accentuate their strengths as accountants.
Linford Grey's tech stack
Achieving that balance also allows the team to prioritize the important things in their life: family, personal goals, and health. The time saved using the right technology can be used to allow work and home life to exist in harmony, not as opposites jostling for space.
Client success equals practice success
Adam and his team embody a simple methodology: they succeed if their clients succeed.
“Linford Grey is a part of the business of every client that we work with. I think that accountants have to move into that more integrated role. They have to have the expertise, they have to invest in the wider skill set of understanding business models, and of understanding the goals and the pressures of small business owners.”
There they stand very well, because through Linford Grey’s forward-thinking, technological fluency, and dedication to craft, their clients are prospering and will continue to grow well into the future.
Guaranteed consistency via automated data collection and client reminders
Successfully scaled the firm without sacrificing quality
Gained confidence in setting service level agreements with clients
About Linford Grey
Services: Accounting, Compliance, Tax, Payroll, Financial Forecasting, Audit, Digital Migration
Location: Leicestershire, United Kingdom
Firm Size: 4-10 Employees
Years of Operation: 5 Years
Karbon User For: 5 Years, 7 Months
- Guaranteed consistency via automated data collection and client reminders
- Successfully scaled the firm without sacrificing quality
- Gained confidence in setting service level agreements with clients