Desperate time calls for desperate measures. Even several small-scale businesses had to downsize their manpower because of the slow business before hitting a dead end. The struggle between the outsourced accountants and the company’s management also took a hit as the work from home became the best option. Digital apps and software are the saviors in such crucial times. Thus, companies have forgone manual accounting practices and let their accountants get used to the CRM client portals.
With the purpose of enhancing productivity and minimizing the workload, many accounting firms now choose software products like CRMs (Customer Relationship Management systems). This software will assist them to get more clients, streamline procedures, and improve relationships with clients. CRM can be advantageous for CPAs and Accountants in an accounting firm.
This article gives you a comprehensive look at features of Customer Relationship Management (CRM), and a list of the top CRM software.
What is CRM Software?
The customer relationship management software helps all businesses to manage a privileged client relationship, client’s information, and all financial data, download and upload the information and generate reports.
It’s a technological tool that was once reserved only by the HRs. but not anymore. The accounting world is rapidly changing. Stagnant practices are overcome now with the help of the latest accounting tools like client portals to have better communication with their clients for the long term.
How CRM Software is helpful for Accountants?
Accounting firms work around the clock. Their work routine is hectic. Accounting firms are juggling with several services like;
- Tax planning
- Financial planning
- Income-tax preparation
- Bookkeeping services
- Financial auditing etc.
Add the huge figures in your everyday business dealings and you will realize the time frame and pressure. Therefore using CRM software is a smart way to make it all work in terms of;
- High availability and expandability with the business growth.
- Self-service competency so that clients can use it freely
- Flexibility in use by being user-friendly for the accountant
- High-security level to protect the client’s financial information
- Use of in-depth analytical tools that helps improve the customer experience
- Functional capacities that are client-centric
Top 14 Features of CRM for Accounting Firms
In order to make the most of the value of data, it has to be properly stored. One of Customer Relationship Management (CRM) principal features is a copyrighted method of data storage so users can draw out the data efficiently.
CRMs also provide assurances of data protection and also backup data to avoid losses and safety violations.
Synchronization and Sharing of Files
CRM for CPAs functions as the synchronization stage for many of your external programs.
Through this feature, accounting firm employees can easily upload emails from Outlook, sync with Google Drive, import spreadsheets, and more. Because of the Synchronization and Sharing feature of CRM, they can view all of their feature sets from one platform.
Concentrated List of Contacts and Client History
The best feature of a CRM for CPAs and accountants is that it can store all of their client’s information and makes it approachable to everyone in their team.
As long as you continue to use the CRM, it also offers a distinct history of every client, so anyone from their team can easily review the work that has already been done and previous conversations and catch up on where their team member just left.
Team Cooperation and Document Sharing
Most CRM tools for accountants provide a feature for your firm’s team to add notes and assign tasks. Some tools also provide additional collaboration features like document sharing, email templates, etc.
A fundamental characteristic of CRM tools is having a way to track the life-cycle of your clients, so you can have a greater understanding of the efforts needed to change a client from a potential client to a lifelong client.
An accounting firm should be able to determine where any of its clients are on that life-cycle at a particular moment.
Another prime feature of CRM is the capability to initiate and run customized, automated workflows. Turning monotonous manual processes into automatic ones saves tremendous time.
Automated workflow features generate an effective tool to motivate the team of your accounting firm and your clients to take significant measures at the right moment to keep work moving without any difficulty.
Lead Management for Determining High-Quality Leads
It is not possible to complete the Customer Relationship Management feature list without the lead management feature.
This high-tech feature allows a CPA or An Accountant of an accounting firm to find out the best clients to follow up with them, according to population and psychographic factors. This feature helps to focus on the right leads at the right time.
Streamlined Client Onboarding and Management
A CRM tool specifically built for accounting firms, it offers the ability to set up and organize your client onboarding process. Through using CRM tools you can spend time and effort customizing your client onboarding process, this will decrease the management burden on your team.
With extra features like self-service client portals, document signing, and document sharing, accountants can also oversee a lot of your client administrative functions without a lot of additional burden on your crew.
While it’s not a vital feature, look for CRM software that can integrate with other accounting software that you use, like Xero or QuickBooks. It can also integrate with your calendar for scheduling meetings. Getting all of your tools to integrate with one another will keep you in sync.
Reporting and Analytics
Data reporting is another important feature of CRM tools. Whether it’s tracking email clicks, your team’s average email response times, or other beneficial sales pipeline data, it’s important to be able to assess key performance indicators. By measuring out what is important, you can easily pinpoint ways to improve the way a firm delivers client service.
Email Marketing & Drip Campaigns
Sophisticated CRM software will connect with your email client or email marketing software, triggering behavior-based emails that encourage your clients to take the next step in their lifecycle. Internally, you can set up email campaigns to remind accountants about upcoming deadlines or check on the progress of a file that hasn’t been marked complete yet. Externally, you can send deadline information to your clients, along with follow-ups and appointment requests.
visitor tracking is a simple, non-intrusive tool that turns your outgoing email links into customer-data-generating machines,
sending back invaluable business intelligence your team can use to know what a prospecting lead needs before they ever tell you. Visitor tracking, your agents will gain a clearer picture of your prospects’ needs, and your sales process will be more tailored and efficient. The result is faster sales, higher closing rates, and supercharged residuals.
Privacy and Security
Privacy is now a threat to any company. A CRM system is vital for any company as it has to handle enormous amounts of data. CRM allows the collaboration of distinct departments. Over and above the facility for the employees to perform tasks from anywhere. This allows having a solution in one place to ensure data security.
Generate predictions for future sales figures or projected revenue based on past and present data/trends.
Key considerations: Want the ability to use your existing data to make predictions about upcoming quarters and even new territories? Forecasting functionality puts your data to work for you, empowering you to make objective and informed decisions about the future of your company.
What are some of the popular CRM for Accounting Firms?
When choosing the CRM software you need to keep your budget, misc expenses, user interface, and dashboard in mind too.
Keeping the features in mind the best CRM software for accountants are listed down below.
The CRM offers a 360-degree view of clients, tracking, analyzing the interactions and transactions. Users have the benefit of personalized email campaigns and automation as well. The software provides the;
- Contact management
- Campaign and lead management
- Business development
- Pipeline reporting
- Implementation approach
Starting price: $30
Free Trial: 30 Days
A fully-featured CRM software that helps you to manage client relationships by sending and tracking emails. You can also set up the;
- Lead routing
- Build custom workflow automation
- Track milestones
- Manage processes
- Integrations etc.
Starting price: $29
Free trial: 14 days
A CRM software allows integrations with staff, clients and work. It’s a central billing system to deal with the client’s information in the most effective way.
It offers some of the best CRM features like;
- Centralized client information
- Billing and invoicing
- Adaptive scheduling
- Synchronizing email clients etc.
Starting price: $39
Free trial: 14 days
One of the easiest and fastest modes of the CRM software and accounting client portal is My CPA Dashboard. It is also one of the most convenient dashboards for professionals. The quality features that help to increase productivity includes;
Starting price: $49
Free Trial: 30 days
The Bottom Line
Using the right client portal matters the most. My CPA Dashboard is secure and highly work efficient accounting software that allows every accountant to use it on free will. Paperless financial work is part of the modern business world. So why not get the hang of it?