CAS Is, First, a Communication Challenge

Businessman explaining something on laptop to another manAre your clients happy? Have you told your staff?

By Hitendra Patil
Accountaneur: The Entrepreneurial Accountant

Unless you become the “CAS champion” or make someone accountable to be one, your CAS practice will not take off the starting blocks.

MORE: 21 Ways to Adjust Your Practice in 2021 | How to Communicate the Value of CAS | Don’t Wear a Mask | The 8-Step Method for Launching Client Accounting Services | What CAS Is … and Is Not
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And the single biggest initial challenge for the CAS champ is how to communicate the value of CAS to the firm’s future fortune to every stakeholder – be it partners, staff, clients or prospects. For this post, I will assume that your CAS champ absolutely “gets it.”
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How to Communicate the Value of CAS

How about 75% lower costs?

By Hitendra Patil
Accountaneur: The Entrepreneurial Accountant

In the desktop days, write-up, bookkeeping and accounting processes were perceived more as data entry work. The price clients were willing to pay for data entry put so much pressure on fees that many firms found it was not worth the hassle.

MORE: How to Become an Outsourced/Virtual CFO | Which of Your Existing Clients Are CAS-fit? | The Services That CAS Clients Need | Who’s Afraid of Client Accounting Services? | The Right Mindset for Client Accounting Services
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Other services such as tax preparation, financial statements preparation, etc. brought in higher per-hour dollars than write-up, bookkeeping and accounting work could. Such work got more and more “outsourced” by accounting firms to bookkeeping firms, freelancer bookkeepers and “processing” firms operated by non-CPAs/non-accountants.
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How to Become an Outsourced/Virtual CFO

notepad with word "hire" crossed out and "outsource" written in underneathAnd how CAS drives up the demand.

By Hitendra Patil
Accountaneur: The Entrepreneurial Accountant

Tom, a CPA, has always been a curious person. For over 15 years, his tax practice was doing well. During the tax season, he had no time to think. But, oblivious to himself, with each tax return, he was depositing new questions in his subconscious.

MORE: Which of Your Existing Clients Are CAS-fit? | Don’t Wear a Mask | The 8-Step Method for Launching Client Accounting Services | What CAS Is … and Is Not | Client Accounting Services: The Definitive Guide
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He is now a shared CFO of 12 companies. But he took up the CFO work accidentally.

How?
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Which of Your Existing Clients Are CAS-fit?

a businessman with some jigsaw puzzle pieces in his handThere is a massive return on your one-time investment in identifying such people.

By Hitendra Patil
Accountaneur: The Entrepreneurial Accountant

The experience of those offering successful client accounting services shows that the fastest way to start your CAS practice is to provide it to some of your existing clients. If you already have a CAS practice, it is important to periodically analyze which of your clients have now become a CAS fit. It is important to note that not all of your clients will be CAS-fit.

MORE: Don’t Wear a Mask | The Services That CAS Clients Want | Six Reasons CAS Is King | How to Develop the CAS Mindset
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There are some easy ways to identify which of your existing clients are CAS-fit, i.e., which of your clients will benefit the most from your CAS offering. And then there are some not-so-easy ways to know which are your CAS-fit clients.
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Don’t Wear a Mask

How to show clients your true value.

By Hitendra Patil
Client Accounting Services

So, the CDC has indicated that a mask also protects the person who wears it. Previously, it was advised that masks stop people from spreading the coronavirus to others.

MORE: The Services That CAS Clients Want | The Services That CAS Clients Need | The 8-Step Method for Launching Client Accounting Services | Six Reasons CAS Is King | Who’s Afraid of Client Accounting Services? | What CAS Is … and Is Not | How to Develop the CAS Mindset | The Right Mindset for Client Accounting Services | Client Accounting Services: The Definitive Guide
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But this post is not about coronavirus and masks. When it comes to accounting and the advisory insights hidden in the financial statements and numbers, covering those with a mask is not good for either the clients or the accountants.
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The Services That CAS Clients Want

Happy businessman using smartphone at officePlus six more general human wants to consider.

By Hitendra Patil
Accountaneur: The Entrepreneurial Accountant

What some clients feel is an absolute need, others may feel is not so.

People may need to book an Uber or Lyft ride, but some of them may want a premium ride.

MORE: The Services That CAS Clients Need | The 8-Step Method for Launching Client Accounting Services | Six Reasons CAS Is King | Who’s Afraid of Client Accounting Services? | What CAS Is … and Is Not | How to Develop the CAS Mindset | The Right Mindset for Client Accounting Services | Client Accounting Services: The Definitive Guide
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Some of your CAS will be the premium ride some your clients will want. And – don’t be surprised – for some clients, your premium services will be the need (you want such clients).
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The Services That CAS Clients Need

Portrait of a cheerful businessman smiling at the camera15 that fall under the umbrella … how many do you already offer?

By Hitendra Patil
Accountaneur: The Entrepreneurial Accountant

Client accounting services generally constitutes three key service segments:

  • after-the-fact financial statement preparation, i.e., “write-up”
  • business transaction processing
  • outsourced CFO and controller services

MORE: The 8-Step Method for Launching Client Accounting Services | Six Reasons CAS Is King | Who’s Afraid of Client Accounting Services? | What CAS Is … and Is Not | How to Develop the CAS Mindset | The Right Mindset for Client Accounting Services | Client Accounting Services: The Definitive Guide
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Tax planning/tax strategy services may also become part of your CAS offering if you have interest/expertise in that segment.
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The 8-Step Method for Launching Client Accounting Services

Start small, learn, and then expand.

By Hitendra Patil
Client Accounting Services

Whether you are thinking of offering client accounting services, have already started offering it or you want to grow your CAS practice or make it more profitable, some proven steps will make your CAS practice shape up in the most optimized way. If you have already started offering CAS, these are the steps that you will revisit from time to time.

MORE: Six Reasons CAS Is King | Who’s Afraid of Client Accounting Services? | What CAS Is … and Is Not | How to Develop the CAS Mindset | The Right Mindset for Client Accounting Services | Client Accounting Services: The Definitive Guide
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There are several steps to get started in CAS and make your CAS practice better. The following details are just a bird’s-eye view of the important aspects of how to create your CAS practice. READ MORE →

Six Reasons CAS Is King

Why client accounting services is moving to the forefront of the full-service accounting firm’s offerings.

By Hitendra Patil
Accountaneur: The Entrepreneurial Accountant

Before we get to why firms can’t miss out on CAS, we need to know why business owners buy accounting software, even when their core business is not accounting.

MORE: Who’s Afraid of Client Accounting Services? | What CAS Is … and Is Not | How to Develop the CAS Mindset | The Right Mindset for Client Accounting Services | Client Accounting Services: The Definitive Guide
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In the years before the internet, accounting software was only desktop software. Businesses used it to run their business processes – to issue checks, record income and for some other processes. Business owners predominantly did transactions processing, leaving the financial accounting – and compliance – to professional accountants.
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