All businesses rely on information technology to succeed and are faced with the challenge of balancing productivity, security, and functionality as they implement and leverage their IT solution. For accountants and CPAs, this challenge is made increasingly more difficult by the time constraints they face when delivering high-quality services and consulting to their clients. While every business needs IT support, IT support for accounting firms places a heavy emphasis on efficiency and planning to minimize business disruptions and increase billable hours.
IT support for accounting firms is not a one-size-fits-all solution and an IT support company needs to be more than a helpdesk for your business. In the following sections, we will highlight the benefit of having an IT team capable of delivering IT support for accounting firms.
Stop Wasting Billable Hours on IT
Your time is valuable and every hour your employees spend fixing their technology and trying to get IT support, is an hour of billable time lost. Your IT team should make the process of getting IT support quick, easy, and predictable for all your employees.
If your office staff is frustrated by the time and energy it takes to get their IT issues resolved, it’s likely that your current IT provider does not have the appropriate resources, tools, and operational capacity to keep up with your business needs and industry demands. Your IT outsourcing provider should provide your business with a Service Level Agreement (SLA) that guarantees not only how quickly they will answer your calls and start working on your request, but more importantly how quickly they will resolve your IT issue.
Get the Most from The Technology You Use
Your accounting firm may already use technology like Microsoft 365, but are you getting the most value from its tools and applications? Your business is unique and how you leverage your technology is key to driving value for your organization. A capable IT support provider will have the resources in place to understand your accounting firm, as well as the industry-specific tools and applications you use every day.
A valuable IT outsourcing provider will not only help your implement advanced tools like Microsoft 365 but help you understand how accounting and CPA firms use Microsoft 365 to connect and collaborate more productively. They will have the hands-on experience to help you leverage the tools you’re paying for in a way that provides the most value to your unique business.
Accounting Firm IT Software
Accounting software like CCH, Sage Peachtree, Microsoft Dynamics, and Power BI are all examples of tools that are critical to your business. Your IT outsourcing provider should be capable of keeping these apps running smoothly while helping your business identify the gaps in how you use your technology to get the most value for your organization.
Resolve Recurring Business Pains for Good
Your employees shouldn’t have to seek IT support for the same issues repeatedly. Every time they stop to seek help, they are losing valuable time they could be spending on your core business, not IT. Recurring IT issues not only hinder productivity and waste valuable time, but they also pose a risk to your business down the road if the root cause of the problem is not resolved.
Let the Experts Manage Your Technology Vendors
You pay your employees to consult, file returns, and do the things that make you money, not be IT experts.
When the right people aren’t handling vendor management, your employees often find themselves being the bottleneck between technology vendors. If your team is spending time resolving vendor mishaps and managing the back-and-forth communication with each other, they are spending more time and using more internal resources than they should. Your IT outsourcing provider should take the burden of vendor communication from your staff and have the knowledge and resources to do so with minimal use of your time.
Work with IT Consultants Who Understand Your Industry & Can Provide the Right Level of IT Support for Accounting Firms
The right IT support for accounting firms will drive efficiency and productivity while maintaining industry compliance regulations along the way. Your time and data hold more weight than average when driving success, and there is minimal room for error when implementing new technology and resolving IT issues.
Your provider should understand the ebbs and flows of your business and be prepared to support your organization and minimize business disruptions during critical times of the year such as tax filing season and blackout periods. If your firm is working to meet filing deadlines, your IT services team should avoid IT projects and technology changes during this time to ensure your team’s productivity is not interrupted.
Have a Clear Picture of Future IT Costs and Initiatives for your Accounting Firm
IT projects and new technology initiatives should be exciting and should be a way for your firm to gain a competitive advantage, but often they leave a bad taste in the mouth of businesses that experience unexpected IT costs and delays in the process. Your IT outsourcing provider should be bringing new technology solutions to your leadership team, demonstrating the ROI of these solutions, and mapping out an 18-24-month roadmap that accounts for the technology initiatives and costs necessary for success.
Get Peace of Mind That Your Accounting Firm’s Data is Protected
IT security is non-negotiable in today’s current cyber threat environment, especially for tax and accounting firms. Business continuity, data backup, disaster recovery, and managed security are only pieces of a complete IT security defense. It takes the right tools, policies, people, education, and training to protect your business from attack.
It’s important to protect the trust you have built with your clients and we understand the weight IT security holds for firms like yours. Everyday IT issues like network outages and application issues are hard to miss, but cybersecurity risks are not always easy to spot.
You need to know that the right policies, processes, and IT security tools are in place and that the cybersecurity best practices are being followed within your organization and your IT provider’s organization. Aldridge invested in becoming SOC 2 Type 2 certified to demonstrate our commitment to security, as well as the peace of mind that we are doing everything we can to protect their valuable data.
“Maintaining SOC 2 Type 2 compliance keeps our organization focused on our processes and controls to make sure that we practice what we preach. Completing the readiness exercise and audit process required a significant investment of money and time, but it was worth it. The audit helps us confirm that our house is in order and that we continue to implement the same processes and controls that we recommend to our clients.”
— Patrick Wiley, Aldridge CEO
Complete IT Support for Accounting Firms
At Aldridge, we have experience delivering IT support for accounting firm clients we work to serve as both a technology partner and educational resource for our clients. However, we understand that IT support alone cannot drive success, which is why we provide complete IT outsourcing that covers your IT strategy, design, implementation, support, and security needs.
To learn more about our IT outsourcing and managed services, schedule time to speak with a member of the Aldridge team.