The team at mTrio we have spent a lot of time talking to accountants about the issues most important to them and the words that come up time and time again are “processes” and “workflow”.
Whether you work independently or delegate to a whole team of staff, we all need to manage workflow and if we are honest, we could probably all do this more efficiently! Increasingly practices are recognising the stumbling blocks in using traditional workflow tools like paper checklists or Excel spreadsheets and are implementing cloud based software solutions.
How does this type of software improve workflow management? Here at mTrio we believe that the key to managing your workflow is systemising those pesky processes that are taking up too much time in your practice.
Let’s explore some of the advantages of using cloud-based process software:
Staff can work from any location, at any time and keep up to date with the tasks allocated to them, and monitor the stage they are at in the overall process. We believe staff feel motivated when they know the goalposts, that is, what they are expected to do and by when!
In this industry, strictly governed by rules and regulations many of your processes will be planned and repeatable, we can therefore turn this rigidity to our advantage by uploading standard process templates into the software. These processes can be applied to all relevant clients without any extra data entry and repeat tasks planned into calendars.
You can easily allocate and reallocate work within your office or separate teams, or even to remote working colleagues and retain control. You can use the software as a planning tool to manage workloads and transfer work from busier staff to those who have more capacity in accordance with deadlines or staffing levels.
You can see where your work is and how individuals are performing against targets. Dashboards also show at a glance how a specific client’s workload is progressing and the time it is taking. You can build specific dashboards for different job roles within your practice. You can also use process software to run reports to drill down into specific areas or to gain an overview. Reports are a useful planning tool for future task allocation.
Communication systems within software allow staff to flag up issues or ask questions on specific tasks without these issues getting lost in general email inboxes. For example, why there is a delay on completing a task or to request a higher-level authorisation, or to reassign a task to a new member of staff with a nice explanation why they now have a bit more work to do! This means all staff are always kept in the loop.
Efficient planning means you are making the most of your resources, crucially staff time. The more staff you have the harder it is to plan but software can help you to allocate tasks according to capacity and skill level, ensuring no tasks are missed. Missed work usually has to be completed at the last minute by the wrong staff member. E.g. you don’t want a tax senior doing an administration task.
Using process software is a scalable approach to managing workflow within your practice, the more staff and clients you have the more there is to organise, of course, but you won’t suddenly reach a size where your mode of workflow management needs changing. You have already uploaded your standard processes to be used for as many clients as you have scope to take on. You can also update your dashboards and reports to accommodate your changing business needs.
We can sing the praises of process software solutions but we know working life doesn’t exist in a vacuum and every practice has different needs, and different ways of working. At mTrio our approach to process management has been developed purely with accountants in mind. Our team of experts have experience in the industry so we have built a bank of standard processes you can upload and dashboards for standard job roles which you can then tweak to your practice’s exact needs. Hence, our software is scalable, time-saving, and user-friendly, it addresses workflow in a way which is relevant to a modern accounting practice.
Find out more about the mTrio journey.