3 things your accounting firm can learn from the pandemic

Even the darkest clouds can have a silver lining. And for your accounting firm, that silver lining can be what you learn from hardship.

COVID-19 has taught—and continues to teach—many different lessons around the world.

In particular, the accounting industry has received a masterclass in disaster preparedness, the importance of agility and the power of resilience.

Accounting firm owners have adapted to new ways of working, understood the meaning of a well thought out tech stack, and realized the imperative role they play in their clients’ lives, especially in crises.

What can you learn from the events of 2020?

How has the COVID-19 pandemic impacted your firm? With business shutdowns worldwide, many firms had to pivot overnight and adapt, whether they were ready or not. 

There are many lessons to be learned and actions you can take to seize the opportunity the pandemic created. Here are the three key learnings.

1. Take care of your people

The firms that already had employees working remotely and using the right tools to communicate, collaborate and execute work gained a competitive advantage.

These employees were able to stay productive and focused during uncertain times because they were set up with the tools they needed to do their jobs well.

On top of that, the firms that transitioned quickly and supported their employees’s mental health and work-life balance also came out on top.

2. Take care of your clients

With many small businesses left alone and in need of immediate financial support, leading firms were able to step up and provide the support needed.

Whether it was helping clients lodge various government relief loans and grants, or simply providing useful content to non-clients about working remotely and navigating these support services, leading firms were there to provide immediate assistance.

Offering advice tailored to their clients’ unique situations also helped leading firms stand out.

3. Prioritize your investments in tech

In 2020, 46.6% of accounting professionals added more than two new solutions to their tech stack and another 11% added four or more.

To do this, you need to prioritize your time, budget and openness to make even small investments in apps and tools that can help your team use their time more effectively.

The firms that are adaptable, nimble and open to technology are leading the way and setting new expectations for the industry.

The 3 key areas to prioritize to weather the next storm

Predicting what lays ahead is nearly impossible, but there are three key areas of your accounting business you can prioritize and safeguard so you can weather the rest of this storm, and the next:

  1. Your people

  2. Your clients

  3. Your technology

There's not a lot that we can predict in business, but one thing we can guarantee is that storms come.
James Ashford, GoProposal

When you continuously prioritize these three areas and commit to reviewing, refining and improving them, your accounting firm can ride any wave.

And all the hardship won’t be for nothing.

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Jess Marcello
Managing Editor, Karbon Magazine

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