Current & Future Working Pattern Changes for Accounting Service Providers
Being in the accounting services business has never been easy. Clients expect you to protect their revenues, provide the necessary advisory, and be available for all the financial firefighting. COVID-19 has affected a lot of this in one go.
Most accounting firms counted their productivity and the scale of work they could take, on the basis of how many people they employed. A lot of work was dependent on face-to-face interactions. Operations were critically relying on paperwork and pristine documentation.
Now – all of that stands to change. Some firms will take this as an existential challenge. Others would take this as an opportunity to catalyze growth. Work from Home and Social Distancing are real challenges to businesses. The key issues would be:
1. How do you conduct team meetings or training & development sessions?
2. How do you manage employee morale when they are asked to work for long hours to meet a deadline, but they are not in the office?
3. How do you ensure pristine documentation? Paperwork and other physical contact-based methods will go obsolete.
After extensive research and fireside chats with our colleagues, partners, and clients, we have developed a list of dimensions that will change for accounting firms post COVID-19.
The work done by a conventional CA Office will not change for the time being. But the way the operations are run, from client relationship management to auditing and accounting work, will observe a sea of change with greater digital integration. Firms that are able to take this transformation on a strategic level will see greater efficiencies and, eventually – greater profits.
Firms will have to focus on cloud computing infrastructure, data storage solutions and web & mobile access to all most of the work processes. Some firms may choose to do this in-house; but the firms that choose expert vendors will be able to move rapidly and get economies of scale with their benefits.
So, if your firm is using legacy systems – this shutdown is posing as an opportunity to reinvent your operations to improve the long-term growth of your bottomline.