Guest post by Kirsten Hawke of Business Buddy
At Business Buddy we like to think of accountants and bookkeepers as doctors and nurses. Both are extremely valuable to our clients, and neither would be as effective without the other.
Bookkeepers are like nurses. They take care of daily tasks and have great “bedside” (or deskside) manner. Accountants, on the other hand, are like doctors who diagnose the patient and recommend treatment options. The bookkeeper makes sure the accountant has the best-possible view of the patient’s symptoms while the accountant makes sure everyone’s doing the right thing to make the patient stronger.
How it works
When we bring a new client on Xero, they work with a bookkeeper first. Like a nurse, the bookkeeper does a first assessment and gets clients stable and comfortable. Or, in our case, gets them up and running on Xero. They get bank feeds set up and keep a close eye on our clients for eight weeks to make sure everything’s ticking along the way it should.
Gayle Buchanan is a great example of this in action. She loves to keep things tidy and her bookkeeping prowess is all about coaching SME clients to keep their data clean.
This means that our accountants can always rely on clean data, because not only do clients have a bookkeeper helping them, they’re also learning skills they need to keep it clean on their own.
That clean data helps them quickly make an accurate diagnosis. And with an accurate diagnosis, they can recommend the best possible treatment. To put that in business terms, it means everyone’s spending their time where it adds the most possible value. Accountants don’t have to waste their time going through scraggly invoices, and bookkeepers always get an opportunity to focus their razor-sharp attention to detail where it’s needed.
None of this would have been possible in the old days of desktop software. All the efficiencies we gain by focussing our abilities where they’re specialised would have been obliterated by the process of transferring data files back and forth.
Entering transactions into a single ledger once means the data doesn’t need to be re-entered by an accountant. The bookkeeper makes it nice and clean, and all the accountant has to do is look at it.
The end result? Everyone at Business Buddy gets access to the revenue streams that harness their expertise. More importantly, we get to deliver the best possible service to clients. And when our clients are happy, they keep coming back for more.