MYOB Portal: an accountant’s perspective
MYOB Portal has already become an integral part of many Australian and New Zealand practices. Having a fast, simple-to-use online collaboration tool is drawing plaudits from both accountants and their clients.
For instance, Feryal Daou of MC Chartered Accountants said recently that she’d had plenty of positive feedback:
We have received many compliments from clients as to the increased efficiency of our practice. One client said “It was fantastic, so user-friendly and efficient. Really, really positive experience.”
I decided to take a deeper look into how MYOB Portal was working out for practices by reaching out to one of the first adopters of the collaboration platform, Brendan Drummond of SHB Business & Wealth Advisers.
MYOB: How long have you been using MYOB Portal in your practice?
BRENDAN: We set up the MYOB Portal in June this year so we were up and running in time for the new financial year.
MYOB: What motivated you to get started with it?
BRENDAN: Being in a provincial city we service a large geographical area, including a large farming area. It’s often not convenient for clients to drop into the office to sign paperwork, and posting via snail mail is inefficient for everyone.
We also have a loyal client base, many of whom remain with us even after leaving Warrnambool. The biggest hassle for those clients was the logistics of sending and receiving information to and from us. As soon as we heard about the Portal at the MYOB Roadshow earlier in the year we immediately saw the benefits to us and our clients.
MYOB: What change has MYOB Portal brought to your practice?
BRENDAN: It has introduced some great efficiencies. Tax returns can be prepared, signed and lodged more quickly for clients who struggled to find the time to make it in to our office. Our admin team now spends less time calling clients to remind them to drop by and sign their paperwork, which frees them up to spend time on more productive tasks.
As we start to utilise the Portal more for exchange of information with our clients we see the opportunity for even more efficiency gains.
MYOB: What feedback have you had from your clients about MYOB Portal?
BRENDAN: We’ve had nothing but positive feedback on the Portal. Clients have found the set-up process easy to follow and some of our remote clients have commented that the electronic signing is far better than the printing, signing, scanning and emailing back that they used to do. I recently had a call from a dairy farming client letting me know he had just electronically signed his BAS as he was bringing his cows in for milking!
MYOB: Can you comment on any time-savings you’ve noticed with using MYOB Portal versus your old document collaboration solution?
BRENDAN: Prior to using the Portal, in order for documents to be signed by clients we either had to print them out and request clients drop by the office, post them out and await their return, or email them out and expect the clients to print, sign, scan and return. All of these methods were an inefficient use of our time and clients’ time, not to mention the cost savings of less printing and posting and the effect on the environment.
MYOB: Can you talk more about how MYOB Portal is helping your remote clients?
BRENDAN: We have been using the Portal for all our remote clients because the advantages were obvious and significant. It has worked out better than we envisaged.
We look forward to using the Portal for more of our local clients, as even though it may not be as big an inconvenience for some of these clients to drop by the office, they will certainly be happy to save the time and hassle of coming to us, finding a carpark, signing and collecting information and then leaving.
MYOB: Any other thoughts or comments about MYOB Portal?
BRENDAN: At the moment we’ve limited our use of the Portal to primarily electronic signing of documents and uploading of their completed Financial Statements and Income Tax Returns. But we see huge potential in the Portal, eventually using it as a communication/collaboration tool with clients and in some instances replacing email for things such things newsletters and notices, and even a place where clients can securely store their important documents such as wills, property titles, etc.
We particularly like that the Portal address and branding can be customised to our practice. We have a link to the Portal on our website so clients can easily find it and when they log in they see our practice has a very professional-looking and tech-savvy solution that took us very little time to set up.
Speak to your MYOB Client Manager to find out more about MYOB Portal, or watch this 15-minute webinar that explains how it works.