Request a CCH iFirm Demo

Request CCH iFirm Pricing Info

Screwdrivers, People and the Cloud

I've always had a strong passion for understanding how everything works together at the most intricate level. Yes, I was one of 'those' kids. One that would have to tear everything apart, in a burning desire, to truly appreciate the inner workings of the bigger picture.

On a standard day in kindergarten, with a screwdriver in tow, I'd find the closest old phone or TV and have it pulled apart into its respective components and put back together (mostly) within the hour.

Over the years, this passion for understanding everything evolved through the achievement of a mix of qualifications in science, IT, accounting and an MBA. All the while, the reason for this mix is that the questions I wanted answers to became more and more focused on the bigger picture.

Read more…

Cloud accounting is morphing – but you can take control for profitable client servicing

Cloud accounting is taking the profession – and its clients – by storm. The problem for firms is that, as the offerings proliferate and continue to morph, how will your systems and staff cope?

From our recent survey of accountants and their SME clients across Australia - "Can the accounting profession 'keep up' with clients and the cloud" – 4 out of 5 professional accountants who are using cloud computing gave it a ringing endorsement. We also know that 59 percent are using two or more of these apps with their clients. But firms are overwhelmingly - 93 percent – accommodating SME preferences, rather than being the technology influencers: "We go with what the client wants, we just have to learn their software."

Read more…

Taking the Cloud Journey with our Customers

I came to Wolters Kluwer, CCH 13 years ago and my experience of this exciting organisation only keeps getting better. As I've worked towards my current role, it's given me the chance to explore strengths across both hemispheres of my brain – I'm a people person, with a finance background!

So why did we deliberately create a Customer Experience team? Our products and services bring new technologies to market, to solve business challenges and vastly improve productivity, but they must do so in a way that fits in the real world. So we take 'customer experience' very seriously. We genuinely seek out feedback and satisfaction. 

We're passionate about process improvement that delivers unprecedented value for our business and yours. The process of turning individual comments, requests and ideas into reality has become quite technical. Since 2011 we quantify all customer contact via the NPS (Net Promoter Score) program that allows us to measure how happy you are with everything we do. 

Read more…

The big picture business model – the impact of cloud on accounting and other trusted professions

The accounting profession's response to the cloud is overwhelmingly positive, particularly given how relatively new this technology shift is. It's deeply disruptive – in the current, positive use of the word - because its impact goes beyond that of simple functionality and process automation. Cloud is fundamentally changing the way we operate. The accounting profession is converting from a transaction based, behind the scenes operation, to a partner service based model. 

To better identify where the opportunities are, we conducted a nationwide survey* of accountants and their SME clients - "Can the accounting profession keep up with clients and the cloud". Tax planning, business advisory, business planning forecasting and cash flow were the areas nominated by respondents as being the most positively impacted by real time access to their clients' accurate, current financial information.

Read more…

The NZ 2014 GBU is nearly here!

As we count down to the release of the 2014 The Good, the Bad and the Ugly (GBU) benchmarking report for the NZ Accounting profession, we thought we would have a look back at some of the key results from 2013.

The 2014 GBU will be launched on Wednesday, 10 December 2014, 2:30-3:45pm with an Industry Insights webinar. The team at CCH Business Fitness NZ will guide you through the results looking at the trends from the industry and what the best performing firms are doing differently. 

You can register for the webinar and your copy of the 2014 GBU here.

Read more…

Regional vs. Metro – a cloud-based practice is the equaliser

Whether we're operating in the city or the bush, we're always trying to differentiate ourselves in our own, but increasingly competitive, market. We have to keep costs down, for both our own businesses and our clients. And, for the entrepreneurial ones among us, there's the search for ways to grow – profitably and sustainably.

With our highly regulated economy, it's been a challenge for accountants to stay on top of the ever changing compliance regime. Being confident that the information you have is the latest available, has been problematic. 

Cloud, and the game changing NBN, is now transforming the way we all work – particularly for those in regional areas.

Read more…

Cloud Accounting Creating an Equal Playing Field for SMEs – and Opportunities for Trusted Advisors

For those businesses that want to grow it can be a challenge, or even an issue, sourcing the appropriate funding levels needed to help facilitate that development. In fact for some small businesses they only know their cash flow position when it could be too late and no bank will look at them.

Imagine this, if every one of your smaller enterprise clients was operating with an appropriate level of easy to use accounting solutions that gave them a daily position on cash flow, stock levels and resources and one that you can see and advise on in real time.

With the influx of cloud-based accounting platforms – whether they primarily are used for bookkeeping or more strategic financial purposes, there is now no reason why SMEs should not be operating with an appropriate level of proactive, sophisticated financial advice - the same cost and tax-minimisation intelligence that's been giving their larger counterparts an unfair advantage for too long.

Read more…

Cutting Red Tape – targeting $500 million in savings

For most of us accountants, your university degree focused on compliance and the complex number crunching you needed to master to balance the books. There was this sense that clients delivered folders of invoices and shoes boxes of receipts for you to work your end of financial year magic. In between these pressure times, everyone more or less sat in the dark. Compliance was the future – remember that?

But now the way SMEs achieve compliance is changing, thanks to an interesting combination of technology and government action and nowhere are the changes being seen more graphically than in Australia. However in 2014, we ranked 124th of 148 countries for 'burden of government regulation' in the World Economic Forum Global Competitiveness Index. The Productivity Commission estimates that regulation compliance costs could amount to as much as a whopping four percent of Australia's GDP.

Read more…

SMEs reaching for cloud accounting partnerships

One of the great things that we get to do here is work with industry to help determine roadmaps for future solutions and how our clients, and in turn, their own clients react to solutions available today. Key to our recently launched research, "Can the accounting profession 'keep up' with clients and the cloud" is how SMEs are reacting to the cloud accounting packages available today and the new business potential for trusted advisors.

Great news – and certainly more positive than the results from our 2013 study – this year Australian SMEs are displaying a highly positive attitude to cloud computing - whether they are current users or still in the planning stage. We can see from anecdotal feedback in the 2014 survey their positive response to cloud and the new business potential for their trusted advisors.

Read more…

Use it or lose it – cloud technologies and the age issue

Today I wanted to have 'that talk' with all of the professional accountants out there. Let's look at how age is determining the potential for accounting practices to evolve from narrow compliance roles to profitable, trusted adviser hubs.

Car advertisements no longer highlight details of the engine capacity – what's under the bonnet is a given. What buyers are interested in is the comfort, fuel efficiency and the comms and sound systems. Similarly, we're getting to the point where cloud is a given and we can move on to talking just about the apps. But this is a very age related statement. 

As confirmed by recent Wolters Kluwer, CCH research, the answer to the title of the report - "Can the accounting profession 'keep up' with clients and the cloud" - depends very much on how old you are.

Read more…