It’s Time to Take a New Look at Your Tax Practice
If you’re a tax practitioner, you might have started worrying that some of your practice might become automated in the future, thus rendering some of the work you do unnecessary. Have you given any thought to what you might do if that occurs?
Jul. 12, 2019
If you’re a tax practitioner, you might have started worrying that some of your practice might become automated in the future, thus rendering some of the work you do unnecessary. Have you given any thought to what you might do if that occurs? Will you expand your practice by adding more clients? Will you reduce your staff size? Will you lower your revenue expectations? Or would you consider adding additional services?
This month’s magazine features a fascinating article by Ryan Genor, CPA/PFS, and Sarah Lane, CPA, integrated tax and planning professionals at CLS Financial Advisors in Portland, Oregon. If you are in the business of tax preparation and are worried about the future of your practice in this world of automation (and maybe, someday, simplified taxes), the concepts presented in this article should resonate with you.
Now, while you still have time to prepare yourself for what appears to be inevitable future change, you might want to consider adding basic financial planning services to your tax practice. You don’t have to be a registered investment advisor, you don’t need financial planning credentials – although none of these would be bad things to have. What you do need is a desire to help your clients get to a better place.
Your clients already confide in you and trust you, so taking your relationship to a higher financial level should be an easy step. By expanding your services to include future planning in areas that might include retirement, education, budgeting, eldercare, estate, risk management, and yes, even investment/wealth management, you can improve your stickiness with your clients and increase the level of services that you offer to them.
You don’t have to make this change all at once, and there are many ways to approach an expansion of your services. Start small, with one or two clients and with one skill you’re already good at, and see how that service line resonates with your clients and your staff. Find the clients who are a good fit for the services you are able to offer. And then expand from there.
You already have the discussions with your clients that can get this process started. Each year, when you meet with your clients to go over their tax situation, isn’t it the case that topics come up that could benefit from additional services that you could provide? Any time there is a life change, there are financial issues that should be addressed. Rather than trying to answer quickly during the tax meeting, so you can get on to your next client, start letting yourself consider how you could actually provide a service in this area, beyond the preparation of the tax return.
See inside July 2019
Transform Your Thinking on Serving the Construction Industry
Accountants in the construction industry often approach me and ask for tips and tricks pertaining to working for this challenging industry. TIP 1: Be sure that you are aware of the differences between types of construction companies and the greatly varying compliance and analysis needs that can exist among them. Start by clarifying the type […]
How to Expand Your Firm’s Services by Offering Personal Financial Planning
If you’ve been in practice for a while, you probably have a roster that includes many long-time clients. Over the years, clients may have approached you for your thoughts on their plans for retirement or the best way to plan their child’s education.