3 min read

Need time-saving solutions for your firm?


Running any business is a challenge. But accounting firms are a special case. With clients looking to you for legal and regulatory compliance as well as guidance in their biggest decisions, the work an accounting firm does is foundational and deeply meaningful.

So when a firm runs into the same challenges any business might face—such as staffing, budget, or technology—the effect is multiplied by the firm across all its client businesses. That could seem like an overstatement, but it’s hardly the case. Your clients rely on smooth, streamlined operations at your firm in order to get their needs fulfilled with precision and timeliness. Anything standing in the way of that hurts them at least as much as it does you.


Challenges abound

We’re all probably more than tired of reading/hearing about “The Great Resignation,” but indications are, it’s continuing. I mean, Beyoncé just released a SONG about it, for crying out loud. That’s gotta mean SOMEthing, right? Anyway, firms are not escaping the difficulties all other businesses are finding with hiring.

And inflation, supply chain issues, and rising wages are putting pressure on all businesses as well. All this while technology continues to evolve, traditional services are becoming commoditized, and workers’ mental health is on the decline.

It’s easy to see how firms are desperately in need of more time. Time to plan, to get the work done, to train and improve. Yet demands on that time are more persistent and insistent than ever.


The same ol’ same ‘ol won’t cut it

However you’re accustomed to managing your firm’s time, there’s a good chance it’s time for a reevaluation. Unless you’re finding yourself with more time than you need, in which case congratulations. For the rest of us though, our practices regarding time management probably need an overhaul.


Scenario 1:

You were a bit short-staffed in 2019, before the pandemic hit full swing. Since then, you’ve had more employees exit than join. The staff is doing double- or triple-duty to make up the slack. Nerves are frayed, burnout is becoming an actual, detectable smell in the office when you can even get people to go. You live in mortal fear of the next resignation.


Scenario 2:

Rising costs are just a fact of life, right? But this past year has been sleeplessness-inducing. While your overhead races upward at a pace you haven’t seen in decades, you’re also needing to output more in wages to account for changing workforce expectations. Insurance costs are through the roof. You’ve raised your rates, but at best you’re treading water. And you can’t even get any sympathy for it, because everyone else is in the same proverbial boat.



Scenario 3:

You feel like you have a reasonable handle on technology—you did, after all, finally haul the fax machine to the curb last summer, and most of your clients make use of your secure portal. But you notice that it’s getting more and more difficult to dedicate full-time positions to tasks that just don’t offer the ROI; for example, bookkeeping. On top of that, cybersecurity concerns, tech stack interactivity, and compatibility issues crop up on the regular. You’re no longer even sure how to determine your tech needs or costs.

If any of these sounds like you or, worse—ALL of them sound like you, then convincing you it’s time for a change isn’t complicated. If none of these sounds like you, then again, congratulations. Are you sure things will stay that way? A good, close inspection of your firm’s people, productivity, processes, pricing, and technology couldn’t hurt.


Do less to do more

Part of the fix for your situation is, counterintuitively, to do LESS. What you want is to be able to scale your firm while working less in it. Sound like a pipe dream? It’s not.

Obviously, this is where efficiency comes into play. It’s a great word and an even better concept, but it’s deceptively simple in this context. Let’s review just a FEW different areas where efficiency comes into play:

  • Staff/team/individual contributor
  • Processes
  • Manual vs. technology solutions
  • Client development
  • Billing 

I could continue, but chances are you’re already nodding along. So we can say the words, “be more efficient,” but of course, it’s more complicated than that. There isn’t just the how, there’s also the what.

That’s where things get interesting. It turns out one efficiency breeds others. Optimize your technology, and suddenly your staff is freed up and becomes more efficient. This leads to more efficient billing, etc. It can and often does cascade throughout all aspects of your firm. Optimize several aspects of your firm at once, and the effects can increase exponentially.


When your firm is efficient, every move is deliberate and produces a desired result. Everyone does less, but more is happening. It’s a beautiful thing.


This is the important part!

Botkeeper is all about efficiency, as well as time- and money-saving. Our automated bookkeeping solution has saved our accounting partners thousands of hours and untold dollars once spent on manual bookkeeping. They now have capacity for more and better business, as well as the time to devote to high-margin activities like advisory services.

But we don’t expect firms to stop there. So we’ve partnered with Ryan Lazanis of Future Firm, Inc. to feature 79 of his favorite time-saving tips for firms. The tips cover tactics across sales, marketing, and pricing; productivity; people; and process and technology. Each represents a way to reclaim some time in your firm, improve your bottom line, and stress less.

The 79 tactics to save time in your firm will doubtless become a valuable reference for you in your firm’s pursuit of growth, efficiency, and profitability. Check it out today, and start reaping the benefits of more time, less work.


Read it here!

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