What does an enterprising bookkeeping and accounting professional look like today? Busy? Multitasking? Yes. But more important is that they are customer-focused. Intuitively we all know what this means; at a more pragmatic level it means asking yourself some tough questions:
• What do your clients really think about the services that you are providing?
• How would they rate your services out of 10?
• Are you supplying all of the information that could be supplied to assist your SMB clients build a more profitable business?
In search of excellence
Two enterprising bookkeepers told us their stories:
1. Kelly has set herself some ambitious goals: two new clients a month for the next three months. To get new clients without waiting for referrals, she searches ‘part-time bookkeeper’ ads. She sends her website link in a cover email; she details her focus on helping the business owner and describes how the business will save money in the long run using her services instead of hiring a part-time employee. Of 10 ads she answers, 4 ask to meet her and 2 become clients. She makes sure the job is for 10 or less hours a week. She repeats this a month later. Her income has doubled in 12 months. You have to give her points for smarts.
2. Maree has a health food business as a client. “Due to the nature of the business, my client spends a lot of time on the move, and therefore needs applications and software that support the level of flexibility that this type of work requires. He also has the habit of putting receipts in his wallet and then never been seen again!
“I upgraded his accounting software system to include an add-on that allows him to take pictures of his receipts and uploads them immediately, whenever and wherever he is. It keeps them stored and it means I’m not reliant on paper receipts and as a result losing get claims.”
She also has a flat rate agreement with the client. Flat rate give you the flexibility to work from home if you are disciplined, instead of going to the client’s place of business. Contrast that to charging an hourly rate; then the client may prefer you to work from their place of business, so they can monitor your time. Definitely not cool for the enterprising bookkeeper!
What combination of service options would make your service package irresistible? No one-size-fits-all answer to that question, unless you have developed an excellent service – like Kelly’s where you can look forward to your prospective SMB client saying “When can we start?”