Steve Cox
2 minutes length
Posted: 3rd September 2020

Improving client communications tops accountants' priorities

Improving communication with clients is the top post-lockdown priority for accountants in practice, new research by IRIS has revealed.

We’ve been finding out how accountancy firms have been faring during the pandemic and identifying the challenges and solutions for the ‘next normal’.

Our recent customer survey of nearly 1,200 leading professionals uncovered what’s heading their to-do lists as businesses adapt to the new requirements arising in the age of COVID.

What did accountants say?

1. More effective communications (30%)

Many accountants are looking to increase and improve client communications (30%), according to our survey. Part of the equation is to do so while continuing to operate some remote working and also factoring in the social distancing requirements.

Accountants may be thinking of acquiring tools such as self-service portals that empower clients to access key guidance and personal details, and apps which enable you to create and send personalised mass communications easily and quickly.

 2. Moving to cloud/hosted systems for flexible working (22%)

Already, during the lockdown, 70% of accountants surveyed said they enacted home working, and 49% implemented flexible hours.

But were the right systems in place or were they merely sticking plasters – a stop gap to muddle through with?

Without the right technology in place to enable home working, team coordination, productivity, workflow, and employee engagement can become a problem.

And it’s very likely that enabling staff to work from home – at least for a portion of the time – is going to continue. Even if the coronavirus is brought under control and the risks decrease, employee expectations and demands have probably shifted permanently.

A hosted desktop will allow staff to be able to work from anywhere, any time, and with as little interruption as possible because it allows a team to use exactly the same system and set up as they are used to in the office. It means an identical version of the office PC, and the user experience is just the same.

What else did accountants say?

Investing in technology to improve automation, better understanding of cashflow and creditors, and increasing web presence also emerged as important priorities for many accountants surveyed. You can discover much more about this by downloading our free report, which contains all the details about the survey, here.

 

What else did the survey uncover?

Our report also reveals:

  • How confident accountants are feeling about the future of their accountancy business
  • How long accountants expect it take to return to pre-pandemic trading levels
  • How accountants have fared since lockdown
  • What their biggest challenges have been

To discover the answers, read our report in full. It’s free to download.

Get your copy of ‘Accountancy in the next normal – thriving amid rapid change’ here.