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Caution advised on pricing model transition for clients

Caution advised on pricing model transition for clients

Accounting firms would do well to consider a few key precautionary measures before deciding to change their client billing model, according to one consultant. 

Tax&Compliance Adrian Flores 13 July 2018
— 1 minute read

Speaking to Accountants Daily, Lotus Accountants director Kylie Parker said experience tells her it’s important for firms to make sure all decision-makers in a firm are on board with the pricing packages and what services are provided.

“Agreeing one thing with a client only to find out that the automation still requires a lot of time from staff leads to both pressure on staff and embarrassment with the client when you need to explain that the package doesn’t cover 25 casual staff with weekly payroll,” Ms Parker said.

If looking to changing a firm’s long-term pricing, Ms Parker advised to not attempt to do it all at once, even where the process seems relatively straightforward. 

Instead, she said it’s better to trial with one team and some select clients, and then move across the firm once the new system is understood.

“Work through staffing as going from annual compliance to monthly management accounting is a little bit different in the way traditional accountants think,” she said.

“It is more about efficiencies so don’t add journals, for example, in bringing in an owner’s business expenses on a personal credit card, add the card in through the bank feeds and then get the client to only use that credit card for business use.

“The change isn’t just about pricing. It is about changing your work practices too.”

Finally, drawing on her own experience adjusting her firm’s pricing model, Ms Parker said she still tracks her firm’s main overheads, namely salaries, so she can make the necessary adjustments at the end of the year.

“The work is still needed to determine pricing unless you make the decision that there are signs and roundabouts and some clients need less time and others more,” she said.

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Caution advised on pricing model transition for clients
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