Accountancy and financial services firms that hope to thrive, must strive to attain maximum productivity in all areas of their activities.Acquiring new leads and converting new customers has always been something of a challenge for most accounting firms - which is why retaining the clients we have, is critical to the growth of the business.
If your firm is unable to retain a stable customer base, the growth of your business is jeopardized.
With so many other CPAs and other financial services providers very willing and entirely able to alleviate us of our clients, it's never been more important to ensure that we focus not only on providing an adequate service, but rather on ensuring we deliver exceptional customer service.
Quite simply, streamlining interactions with your clients allows you to work more efficiently and deliver that invaluable superior client service - helping to set your firm apart from your competitors. An effectively streamlined system is a win for all parties. But how do we achieve this client service nirvana?
Adequate vs. exceptional
While the world's leading accountancy and financial management platforms offer an incredible array of functionality, they arguably fall short on the 'client experience' inasmuch that, while they provide all of functionality to efficiently execute the business of an accountancy firm, the client management and communication aspect could be improved.
Fair enough, but who needs that client facing engagement / interaction element, you may ask. Surely a clients' only focus is on you, their financial services provider, to do the job you've been commissioned to undertake? Well, yes... and no.
Getting the job done on time, professionally and as promised is, of course crucial, but equally important is the 'experience' we provide. We are in the customer service business after all. Every interaction we have with our clients - every touchpoint provides us with an opportunity to reaffirm to the client that they and their satisfaction matter to us. If we approach the business of accounting with a product focus only and not with an eye on the customer service aspect, we risk conveying to our clients that they are 'just another client' ... and that path leads to client dissatisfaction and increased churn.
How a client portal can help reduce churn
By deploying a client portal that seamlessly works alongside our accounting platform of choice, we are able to more efficiently provide our service and simultaneously improve the client experience and help set our firm apart from the competition.
By way of an example, Clinked is a firmly established client portal that helps accountants, tax advisors and financial services professionals to automate routine tasks with configurable workflows. The platform centralizes client and financial information to streamline traditionally paperwork-heavy processes - we're talking about the simplification of client onboarding, document collection and the like. Additionally, Clinked boasts secure instant messaging, task management, data storage (via it's built-in VDR) and an audit trail functionality.
What's more, the platform is offered as a white label solution, allowing firms to ensure their brand is front and centre of this superior client service offering.
Finally, Clinked is supported by 256 bit bank-grade encryption so that all of the functionality outlined previously, is delivered with the ultimate levels of security and complete peace of mind for you, and your clients.
The bottom line is that while the business of accounting (or whatever subset of the financial services sector you work in) is generally highly valued by our clients - we must remember that they have a choice. They have chosen to trust your firm. If you want them to stay with your firm you'll need to provide exceptional customer service alongside systems that alleviate stress, make the process of working with you straight forward and show unequivocally, that the client comes first, every time.
Find out how Clinked can help by booking a demo at www.clinked.com/demo