Diane Lucas, director of Direct Management, believes the industry is in a prime position to better place itself in the eyes of clients, should they be able to understand and articulate their services.
“I really despise people who think of themselves as ‘just a bookkeeper’ because that’s totally undervaluing the work that we do,” Ms Lucas said.
“The opportunities are very much about recognising what you do and being able to alter what you offer to work with the client,” she said.
“There are all interconnected and the very first thing is being able to understand exactly what you do and being able to understand the value that you offer,” she added.
“Then have the courage and the strength to actually stand on your own two feet and say I deserve to be recognised as someone who can provide a much higher service.”
While acknowledging the challenge of moving away from an hourly billing model, Ms Lucas believes it is a necessary move in valuing their services.
“It is something in the industry that is really challenging for a lot of bookkeepers — you want to move away from an hourly rates model because you’re just doing yourself out of dollars because of software efficiencies and two, also undervaluing yourself and pricing you as a commodity,” said Ms Lucas
“If you’re a commodity, you’re only worth as much as an hourly rate. You’re not able to say I do this amount of things which gives you more value, so hourly rates is an out dated commodity cycle,” she said.
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Jotham Lian is the editor of Accountants Daily, the leading source of breaking news, analysis and insight for Australian accounting professionals.
Before joining the team in 2017, Jotham wrote for a range of national mastheads including the Sydney Morning Herald, and Channel NewsAsia.