My CPA is MIA!
Does this sound like you around late-February – April 15th or late-August – October 15th? Are you wondering where the hell your accountant is and why they can’t even acknowledge your inquiries?
Tax preparers make approximately 80% of their revenue during tax season and are working 12+ hours a day including weekends to crank through the high volume of tax returns. You’re accounting tasks have been put on life support until they can break free of that massive workload. Oh, and what happens after the 15th arrives? Do they catch up on everything that’s been left behind … uh, no. They need a break! Yes, a much needed vacation to recover from back-to-back 60+ hour weeks.
Are they trying to deliver a bad service for your day-to-day, month-to-month accounting? No. They really are hard working people. The problem is the business model. They’re stuck and can’t get out.
Most people associate CPAs as tax professionals. CPA firms are primarily tax shops first and anything else second. They only take on the books for their customers to help with tax planning or to make the tax return project go faster. It’s a means to an end.
Nearly all of our customers come to us with this exact same story.
The Basis 365 Difference
We started Basis 365 Accounting to do something different. We flipped the age-old business model on its head to focus on real-time accounting as an extended part of your management team. Need tax returns done? We have preferred partners for that. Our business model is designed to ensure consistent service for you and your business!
Since there is no busy season at Basis 365 Accounting, we target a 24-hour response time and two-week month-end close so your financials are relevant and reliable. Why are the financials not done precisely at the end of the month if we’re real-time? Good question. We provide accrual-based financials which are critical to businesses transitioning from start-up to established business. This allows you to budget and forecast into the future but does require a little more time during the month-end close to get it right.
Here are a few other top reasons why our customers come to us:
The Hourly Rate
Most CPA firms bill by the hour. Have you ever been surprised by a bill where you know that hour was spent talking about your kids? You’re not alone. Our pricing is fixed so you know what to expect going ahead. Most firms have billable rates with set realization rates on what percent of their hourly billings they’ll actually collect. They know they need to bill a little more so you can negotiate down to no lower than their target realization rate.
CPAs have their standard billable rate and sometimes reduce that rate for less important work, like your books. So although you may have been getting a break on this type of work, you are really paying for a tax professional to handle your accounting – which are two different animals. Overall, they’re generally more expensive than the alternatives and even when they are not, what good is that when they’re MIA?
Slow, Ineffective Adopters
I spent almost 15 years managing teams that travelled to firms all over the US implementing the newest technologies. That sounds like CPA firms are cutting edge technology but that isn’t necessarily true.
The most challenging part of implementing those solutions was overcoming culture – “the way they’ve always done things”. Firms are not corporations with a CEO leading the way. They are partnerships with each partner operating as a semi-independent business under the umbrella of the firm name. Their book of business is theirs and they’ll take it with them when they leave.
This means they run their jobs their own way and are resistant to change. It’s easier for them to run their jobs the same way as they change firms versus learning a new workflow, firm to firm.
So although they purchase technology, generally 5 years after that technology was created, they rarely get optimal usage levels due to the bureaucracy and focus on that billable hour.
Modern businesses require modern solutions to ensure their accounting is scalable and real-time.