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Roadshow Profile series: Vicky Richter

Posted 12 months ago in Advisors by Isabella Couwenberg

Xero’s epic annual NZ Roadshow has begun! We’re travelling the country through 16 locations across both islands, from Whangarei to Invercargill and several towns in between!

We’re showcasing some of our wonderful partners in the centres we pass through in our Roadshow Profile series. You can check out more of them here, and info about the Roadshow is here.

My name’s Vicky Richter. I’ve been with PKF Rutherfords in Palmerston North for several years now, but my company’s been around for even longer. In fact, the firm is celebrating its 130th anniversary later this year! We look after more than 500 clients across all aspects of business, from small rentals to large multi-entity businesses, but we specialise in farming.

Back in the 1980s when I started in this line of work , I remember preparing accounts with a typewriter! The results for monthly reports took 3-4 weeks, and for annual reports I’d be chained to my desk for 5-6 months, minimum.

So much has changed since then. I started as an accountant focused mostly on information gathering. Now it’s much more about information sharing, planning, and focusing on the future. I find real satisfaction when I clients I work with take my advice and buy in to better work practices, and I help them to create their own success story. The variety within my role also keeps my day-to-day from becoming boring or repetitive.

I’m not worried about the idea that robots and artificial intelligence will take over accounting. Bookkeeping is almost mostly automated now, and I’m sure it will become fully automated in the future. But what I believe is that the decisions around what to do with that data, and sharing it and interpreting it, will always require human input.

If I had one bit of advice for an aspiring business owner, it would be to research, research, research. Discover as much as you can about your market, check out your competitors, put a lot of time and energy into building your product or service.

The best thing about Xero, for me, is that all of the information I need to work with my clients is always online and available in real-time. We’re using the same programme together, which means all of our fixes stat done and we can see what they can see as we talk. I’ve been able to provide a much higher level of assistance, and most of our clients have taken to it with no issues at all. Our firm went all-in on Xero in 2014 and we haven’t looked back. Mostly we work out of Xero Practice Manager & Tax, but my most-used feature is the reporting templates that we can customise and create management, annual, and bespoke reports for clients.

The Xero Roadshow is great way for me to meet others who’re using the software and glean new understanding of how to use it. The most memorable thing I learnt from the last one was the implementation of columns in customising reports! I have been to several Roadshows and also several Xerocons, and always go back.

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