We're always interested in how people come to look for a bookkeeper, and the stories we hear typically fall into a few different areas.
Let's consider a recent client. When asked how he came to find us, he told us that his accountant had asked him to come talk to us. His wife had been doing the bookkeeping and paying the bills, but since having a little one he's noticed that she's been dropping the ball. Things have been let slip, and they were falling behind.
This is a common story that we hear - often small business owners manage their own books with the best intentions. But it isn't always a task that's aligned to their highest values. Looking after the little fella is much more important isn't it!
Our solution to that challenge is to have a team approach to each client's bookkeeping. That way we take care of the issues of training, staff churn, holidays, and ensuring that there is a consistent and high quality service.
Another story we hear is that the business has had problems with their existing bookkeeper
Sometimes it shows up as a breakdown in communications, sometimes it's the quality of work, and sometimes it is price (although discussion over price can at times be a reflection on the perceived value that the business owner feels they are getting).
A client once called us, frustrated with their bookkeeper and wanting to move. The previous bookkeeper had taken on a new employee and passed on the training costs to the client, resulting in a large unexpected bill. The quality of the service had also suffered during this time, tasks weren't being completed and it was affecting the business.
Instead of working with the client to find a solution, the bookkeeper turned defensive and the relationship degraded quickly - culminating in a long email of poor excuses as to why the client was making a bad decision to move.
The challenge here was that a communication issue resulted in a price dispute, and the client to question the value of the service. Being defensive when given feedback simply put the writing on the wall.
We firmly believe in being open and honest with our clients, and being authentic in our relationships. We provide estimates for work, and notify clients. We don't charge for internal training time, as we believe it is our cost to bear.
While this results in less profit for our business, we see each client as a long term relationship. We work together to grow our clients, and consider ourselves as part of their team.
So what is your story? And is it currently going in the direction you want? If not, perhaps it's time to have a chat and write a new one with us.