A Great Practices Feature - Redmond Accounting
An all-Online attitude, extreme Organization, and an Outsourced accounting service model create the perfect mix for success
Standardization has a new poster child—and her name is Laura Redmond, owner of Redmond Accounting. For those that pride themselves on being ultra organized…you may have met your match.
Laura Redmond launched her firm in 2005. And like most in the profession, her core driver was pride in owning her own business. She also admitted to reasons a bit more A-type.
“I wanted to work my own way…not simply follow along with the way things have always been done. I knew I could run a highly efficient firm. And, to be honest, I wanted to do it my way.”
And do it “her way” she did.
With a background in IT, Redmond knew her way around technology. Her vision was clear: To develop a highly efficient and standardized internal structure. With this goal in mind, she researched multiple Cloud applications and selected the best of the best.
“Today, we are totally in the Cloud and 100% paperless,” Redmond explained. “I made sure to adopt applications that integrated with one another to maximize productivity. Every solution we use is also feature-rich and flexible.”
Redmond Accounting didn’t start out in high-efficiency mode, however. This came after a few years of trial and error and working hard to solidify the vision for her firm. “It takes time to really see what needs to be done to improve operations.”
In the early years, Redmond regularly visited her clients’ offices and worked within whatever accounting system the client had in place. She quickly realized that this process would have to change.
“By accepting to work in the client’s chosen solution, I was hindering my firm’s ability to move to an online accounting service model, which was the direction I needed to go.”
After a great deal of research and testing, Redmond identified several SaaS solutions, including QuickBooks Online, Intuit Online Payroll, Bill.com, Method Integration, and Expensify. “All of our applications work together smoothly and sync with QuickBooks Online…and Method offers exceptional customization options.”
After identifying the right technologies and building a full-on Cloud infrastructure, Redmond explained that it was much easier to standardize processes firm wide.
“Technology can only do so much. You have to also put uniform processes in place; otherwise, everyone is performing work differently. That’s just not efficient.”
This is where Redmond’s heightened sense of organization came in handy. “My firm’s processes are exact, and we make sure to document everything. Our procedural guides act as a ready reference for current staff and training support for new employees.”
Even better, all guides are accessed online. Built in navigation menus allow staff to locate reference information quickly, instead of flipping pages to the right chapter.
“Using Google Sites, we can embed links directly to the particular documentation for any given task…right on the [workflow management] screen that assigns project tasks to staff.”
Redmond shared that the firm has developed 25 detailed process guides to date that outline workflow, management, and client procedures. She also made sure to remark, “That’s twenty-five and counting!”
Her drive to build a highly efficient and sustainable firm was also inspired early on by reading The E-Myth Accountant – Why Most Accounting Practices Don’t Work and What to Do About It. “I loved this book! I dog-eared several pages and underlined a lot of the content because there were so many great tips and relevant action items. It truly inspired me to do things the right way,” Redmond stated.
Laura Redmond’s practice is best described as a full-service firm offering outsourced accounting to service-based businesses. Operating on an online platform, she can serve all clients conveniently while providing real-time support.