This step also includes accessing the most recent account reconciliations to get a better overview of the financial health of the company. For example, the client’s firm might use a credit card account for supplier transactions and a banking account for receivables. Whether your client has accounting software, like QuickBooks or Xero, or a manual accounting system, you need access to these programs. You and your employees want to accurately gauge the current condition of the accounting records, even though you may already have a sense of the situation through your previous discussions with the client. Simplify this process by giving them a foundation to stay organized through the information-sharing stage.
Similar to your legal onboarding tasks, your financial steps might vary based on the client. For example, you likely have your own accounting or invoice software to manage, but you might need to work within your client’s payment platform of choice. Your customer onboarding process will vary a bit in this step of the template, depending on who holds the contract.
Take Notes and Do Follow-Ups
Asking your potential client how they think you can add value to their company will help you understand which misconceptions they might have about your role. This question can be a great ice-breaker that leads to a more informal discussion of their goals, ideals, and challenges. It also shows your potential client that you care about them and won’t see them as a series of numbers.
You can use this pre-onboarding period to remind them how your firm will help solve their issue or tell them a little more about the wider team working on their project. The final phase of onboarding is getting the work done, but this phase continues throughout the relationship. It’s time to deliver on what you promised during the onboarding calls, whether that be accounting for the last few years or getting started planning for the future. Show everything that you will need from the client, but ask for that information incrementally. Set deadlines for the next pieces of information required, and celebrate when they are met. Be clear with what happens if they aren’t met in terms of delays, additional costs, etc.
Cover The Basic Accounting Client Questions
As an accounting or bookkeeping firm, one of the challenges that you may encounter is deciding what questions to ask a new client. However, the onboarding process can be easier after creating a bookkeeping client onboarding questionnaire that guides you on what to ask. Remember, the questions can help you solve a problem or meet the client’s expectations. If you’re looking for simple workflow templates which include templates for bookkeeping firm workflows to stay on top of your bookkeeping client onboarding checklist, you can download one for free here. It also contains 31 other free accounting workflow templates to help you run your business more efficiently. A bookkeeping client onboarding questionnaire lists the firm and potential client’s questions and concerns before the relationship begins.
- Normalising remote work has been one of the most important trends in recent years.
- Now, there is accountability that we never had before and I can see for sure how we are tracking in Karbon.
- Having an in-person meeting with the client is advisable to get to know one another better and grow trust.
- Tax laws change frequently and few business owners can keep up with it all.
An efficient onboarding process encourages long-term client relationships, and only a 5% increase in customer retention results in more than a 25% increase in profit. Information and documentation small business tax alert on prior year tax returns are another essential checklist item. When you’re ready to onboard new clients, ensuring they get a proper checklist of the documents you need from them is critical.
Are your tax returns current?
When that prospect signs, these questions will be read and understood by the onboarding team so that they jump right in with the client to keep things moving. Have you ever worked with a client who seems to demand more and more each time you connect? Scope creep is a common problem for firms that haven’t set clear boundaries and expectations about services from the beginning. The creep becomes more severe each time you give in to these requests, no matter how small.
- A bookkeeping client onboarding questionnaire lists the firm and potential client’s questions and concerns before the relationship begins.
- If you know of any recent changes in tax legislation that could affect your potential client, ask them about it.
- At this stage, you’ll want to finish up any app or tool setup and ensure everyone has the necessary access.
- ➡️ See the bonus section of
our onboarding guide for a list of questions to include in a client survey that will get you useful, actionable feedback.
It will give you a sense of their accounts receivable situation and workload. It would also be best to ask whether they have a separate system for billing clients. Some companies use different software to manage and send invoices that might or might not be integrated with their bookkeeping software. Knowing from the onset whether your client has employees, how many, and whether they provide benefits will allow you to create a bookkeeper checklist that considers all payroll management issues.
Standardize processes across your firm to ensure consistent client deliverables:
An onboarding process varies from practice to practice, depending on the size, services offered, and the type of customers your firm works with. The good news isthat by using a resource such as our new bookkeeping client checklist, you can complete the steps that work for you and ignore the ones that don’t. It helps you and the client determine first steps and what information is needed for the engagement. It gives you a process that you can always follow to be consistent, and it helps you onboard clients more efficiently. A good checklist will also give the client a positive first impression of working with you.
Communication is critical to efficient onboarding
Be sure to share all pertinent data clearly and in detail, so the team does not request the same information twice. This previous experience will make the team look competent and confident, reflecting positively on your business. Make sure you have a signed contract before beginning any work on the client.