By Phil Ellerby

In my last blog, I wrote about what we have and will do in light of the COVID-19 pandemic.  Our press coverage estimations run true in the value of the support we have pledged to our clients.  We have given £500k of software installation, set up, training, support and subscriptions to the clients of Northern Accountants.

Staggering, if I do say so myself!

Recently I was interviewed by Marianne Smith, a leading expert in the thinking around the ‘Client Experience’. She asked me one simple question, why did you do it?

Her view was it was one of the best examples of enhancing the client experience she had witnessed in recent times.

For me, this was an added bonus and certainly not the intention of the offer.

Let’s take away the financial aspect of this for a moment.

I categorically believe that EVERY SINGLE accounting function in the world should have the following key components:

  • A real time Accounting Software (Xero with Active Bank Feeds)
  • An automated Data Entry Package (Receipt Bank)
  • A consistent and constant Credit Control Process (Chaser)
  • A measurable and adjustable financial Budget (Xero with Reporting)
  • A reliable and flexible short term Cash Flow Forecast (Float)

Throw into the mix the ability to take Credit Card Payments (Stripe) and voila…a complete accounting function!

I believe that EVERY business must have these basic components in their accounting function, regardless of size.

To not have them is a false economy, yet 90% businesses do not have all these essential components in their accounting function.

Why?  Well that is 2-fold, actually 3-fold

  1. Having never had it, how do you know you need it.
  2. Not knowing it is possible to have it.
  3. Costs, it can cost up to £4,000 to implement, set up and train on these various softwares.

Well points 1 & 2 are easily resolved through discussion and education.  Point 3 is not so easy, as asking people to part with their hard earned cash to invest in something they have coped without for so long is difficult.

This was a challenge we hoped to overcome in Quarters 2 and 3 of the year.

The COVID-19 pandemic took the need for these accounting add ons from ‘Business Best Practice’ to ‘Business Critical’ so we had to remove the main barrier to them being implemented, the cost!

Our business, our job is to support our clients’ businesses and help them prosper as much as possible.  You develop a love for their business, as being a business owner myself, I see their passion in their business, like I have in mind.  You WANT for them to succeed as you know what it takes to get as far as they have. The sacrifice, the long hours, the blood, the sweat, the tears, the risk!  To let all that potential go to waste by putting our own financial interests first is criminal in my opinion.

So we removed the cost to help give the people and businesses we care about the very best chance of survival.

As a result, we pledged to provide £500,000 of support to our clients free of charge by implementing, setting up, training, paying subscription fees and supporting the use of the NA AppStack.

For a more detailed insight into what the NA AppStack is made up of and its capabilities check out our dedicated webpage NA AppStack!

We are in this together.