Hi. My name is Terry, and I'm the President of Quicksilver Accounting & Consulting,  Wilmington NC.

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Is your accounting firm becoming a dinosaur?

In the last year, I have noticed there seem to be two kinds of accounting firms emerging.  Progressive firms that have latched onto technology and current trends, and older firms who's partners are probably retiring in the next decade and don't want to make a real effort to stay relevant.

I can personally point the finger at these firms, for I am of that 'certain age' that might have been in the later group, had it not been for my innate curiosity of what's out there and my love of trade conferences which keep me abreast of all the new software and trends.   Efficiency is a driver as well, and the love of the field keeps me wanting to offer the very best available.  

There are several indicators your accounting firm has become outdated. What does a progressive accounting firm look like?

Check their website- Is it well organized and informative?  Are they staying in touch with the latest trends and offering new opportunities to their clients?  If a company hasn't updated their website in several years, its safe to say they aren't staying in touch with the world around them.  Do they have social media accounts that are being updating, like Facebook and LinkedIn?  

Have their offerings to you changed in the last several years or are they doing the 'same old stuff' and stagnating.  Are they upgrading staff, adding younger employees and adding new ways to help you?  Are they talking more about helping you grow, and less about data entry?

Do they seem to be using the latest technology or are they still working on older desktop versions, creating excels, creating massive journal entries? The quickest way to find if they are staying relevant is to notice how they operate internally and how they interface with you.  Are they hoarding your information on their 'proprietary' software so you don't have constant access and they have you at their mercy? That drives me crazy! 

Are they suggesting new ways for you to manage your business?  New apps that help you?  Can they interact with your most recent changes and make valid suggestions for improvement? Progressive accountants are finding ways to add the best service possible.  You become their number one focus, not the other way around. 

Are they a jack of all trades with no specialities? Being all to everyone doesn't help stay on top of the latest trends in certain fields.  Look for a company that has a niche in your speciality.

And last, but the most important, do you have the information you need at your fingertips?  Or are they providing financial reports a month or two later, taking longer to close out your prior month, leaving you to make decisions on old information? 

Progressive firms are finding ways to do more analyzing and consulting, using technology to help with data entry and eliminating duplication.  Don't let your financial needs come at the cost of 'we've always worked with them".  A progressive firm is client-centric and stays current with the latest technology and specialized staff.

Which is your accounting firm? Progressive or dinosaur?

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