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Digitising processes as an accountant

From service provider to partner-advisor

Digital transformation is opening up new opportunities and the accountancy sector is not being left behind. Software tools and platforms automate various time-consuming tasks. Consequently, as an accountant, you will enjoy greater opportunities to offer real added value and advice to your clients.

Make sure you are on board as an accountant and aim for a future-oriented business.

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Why invest in digitalization as an accountant?

    • Save time and effort by automating repetitive tasks
    • Get better insight into client data thanks to a better reporting and visualization of data through dashboards
    • Digitalization also helps to improve your internal work processes
       

What does digitalization mean for the accounting business? 

Under impulse of faster and better software, cloud-platforms and shrewd algorithms, a lot of digital progress has been made. Hence, many accounting tools are currently readily accessible that make your work run even more effectively and faster. 

Digitalization helps you as an accountant on various levels: 

  • Automating of repetitive tasks
  • Better visualisation and processing of data through dashboards
  • Optimising the inhouse business operations

Whereas in past times, a classic accountant's daily job used to consist mainly of ordinary bookkeeping management for clients, those classic tasks have now been largely automated by digital means. Just think of software for processing invoices or tools for filing online returns.

Besides software taking over tasks, you also find a growing number of tools that allow you to visualise results in various ways. Tools offer standard dashboards or facilitate their creation, which offers you clearer insights. 

On the administrative level as well, it becomes easier to follow up clients and digitize your planning and project management:

  • Conservation of documents
  • Uploading and expedition of invoices
  • Filing declarations to the authorities

Just consider for example a tool such as Visio 360. A platform for accountants facilitating the management of your entire client portfolio. From the conservation and modification of data and documents to the realization of simulations and analyses to allow you to even better advise your clients. 

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The accountant as an advisor and a coach

The large amounts of data made available due to digital operation enable to run algorithms and artificial intelligence on it. The multiple tools that transform these data into dashboards allow for smarter and better analyses as well. As an accountant, you can thus fully focus on optimisation, strategy and long-term vision for the benefit of your clients.

This way, you assist them even better in their crucial business decisions. Because a client no longer just looks to you to settle their tax return or quarterly VAT calculation but wants to talk with you about the future of their business as well. 

As an accountant, you have the opportunity to take on a new role as advisor and coach, moving from pure service provider to partner. Digitisation and associated insights will help you meet those additional client expectations.

Hire to acquire other skills

So, as a modern accountant and business partner, it is also best to expand your accounting expertise with additional skills:

Strategic thinking, such as drafting and assessing a company or business plan
Guiding clients and better communicating information, such as launching proposals to optimise remuneration or social contributions, looking for the best option for their pension accrual or the growth of their business
Processing and interpreting data, such as working with dashboarding tools or other accounting software, establishing connections between figures

In other words, where 'hard numbers' used to be central, soft skills now prove crucial in successful accounting today.

To acquire these new skills, you can hire new people for your firm or train them internally.

Introducing digitalization within your team and at the clients’

Given the war for talent, talent management is one of the fastest methods to realize this structural change, to seek internal talent and implement change management

In short, if your firm still sends invoices on paper itself, you can hardly ask your clients to upload their invoices digitally. A gradual approach proves the most efficient approach in this regard. This way, you can also train employees and familiarise them with new processes and operating tools. And repeat this effort with your customers.

  • Look for tasks you can automate with handy software and teach your staff how to work with it
  • Involve your employees during this process: in what way do new processes match their own talents and interests?
  • Discuss with customers what kind of advice they expect from you and check how you can organize your business around it. 

Customers sometimes need a little push to jump on board the digital train. Clear communication about the benefits of digital communication and tools is crucial here. Show your customers that you can use the freed up time to assist them even better in their growth as entrepreneurs.

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