This message being delivered to post-tax season clients starting today:
“My business, like yours and almost all other small businesses and nonprofit organizations, is moving through a period of rapid change in what is being called the “new normal”. In short, we need to ‘step up our game’, gain efficiencies through better use of technology, offer more value at lower prices, and develop new sources of revenue that contribute to sustainable cash flow and net profits. For many of us, continued operation as before but now at limited capacity is not a long term solution. Now that we are past tax season, I am taking this opportunity to make several improvements to help us move toward those goals.
First of all, I am moving away from single issue engagements like preparing a tax return to ongoing support engagements like comprehensive financial management. Rather than solve a specific single problem, file a report or handle a business loan, I will offer to support financial operations that define the issue in terms of improved cash flow and profits. For example, we may define my role as contributing a saving $5,000 in taxes over the next year or converting current operating expenses into retirement plan savings. The intent is to focus on financial goals that support you and your business, not simply meet minimum legal requirements for financial survival. This work is based on developing sound strategies, identifying opportunities and shortcomings, and following up on a consistent basis to ensure progress toward the goals.
Second, I’ve expanded support of text messaging when legal signatures are required. Many people just seem to like texting as their preferred method of communication so I am going with the flow. Different levels of security are available at your option, just like before.
Third, I’m getting rid of paper checks. This has been the largest source of bookkeeping headaches and fraud. We simply don’t need to be doing this in 2020. A range of electronic payment options is available and tested to be reliable and secure.
Fourth, I am now offering a cheaper and easier spreadsheet-based accounting option to small organizations who don’t want to spring for something like QuickBooks. Finally, we can connect a bank feed to a spreadsheet, so this option has risen to ‘prime time’ by offering a real alternative to traditional but more complex and expensive accounting systems.
Last, my brand new CPA firm has now completed its first financial statement review, at considerable formal effort and expense, and now I’m looking to expand this service to other nonprofits and businesses that require an independent accountant’s report. Using a small firm auditor can be a great option for firms that struggle with these requirements. If you know of a possible match, please let me know.
There are a handful of other smaller administrative changes; we can discuss those as appropriate.”