Speaking to Accountants Daily, RSM Australia chairman Jamie O’Rourke said accountants should be more actively involved in ensuring their clients are making the most of technology.
“An area that we are focusing is how efficient small-to-medium businesses are from a technology perspective, and we think that's something that's been largely overlooked,” he said.
Mr O’Rourke said that there are two components to this. Firstly, it’s about getting clients to embrace the technologies used by the accounting firm.
“Efficiencies that we gravitate to as accounting firms, which are things such as using a cloud accounting system and then using all of the add-ons that can reduce the number of labour hours that are required to produce the same output,” he explained.
“We then push for take-up through our client base because it's a win-win for the client and also for the accountant: they get the cost benefit, better knowledge and better advice, and we're driving up business.”
The second part is assisting clients to improve technology efficiencies outside of the accounting system, according to Mr O’Rourke.
“That might be how they manage their website, what sort of application they have for emails, file storage systems and whether they are efficient, and are they all talking to each other,” he said.
Mr O’Rourke said this is a gap that RSM is actively looking to address.
“We're developing resources and we're looking to launch something next year that will provide greater assistance to small-to-medium businesses in creating efficiencies in a technology sense within their own organisations,” he said.
This will in turn strengthen client relationships and contribute to business growth for accountants, according to Mr O’Rourke.
“Providing services that will be a digital health-check, and then exploring ways that we can help our clients create more value and create more efficiency in their business, then leads to more value in the relationship that we're providing,” he said.