planning for 2024


4th December, 2023

Plan for a prosperous year ahead

As we close out the year and enjoy some downtime, many small and medium business owners start thinking about what the upcoming year might bring.

Accountants and bookkeepers are no different, often considering ideas not only for their own businesses but also how they can help their clients achieve their goals.

Prosperity isn’t a stroke of luck or a well wish — it’s a strategic endeavour, and one that requires guidance from the financial custodians of a business to achieve success. If you are an accountant or bookkeeper … I’m looking at you!

Now is the perfect time to weave a bit of magic over the holiday period and return with inspiration for the opportunities that 2024 holds for growth, innovation and elevating your client experiences.

Starting from a blank sheet can be hard, so to help here are 5 dynamic areas that you may consider as part of your 2024 plans for your practice and your clients:

planning for 2024

Diversifying service offerings

The financial world is changing fast, and clients want more than traditional bookkeeping or accounting services.

This shift can benefit both service providers and clients, and there are lots of ways you could integrate these into your practice without the commitment of hiring staff or upskilling in another discipline.

Consider things like offering advisory services focused on emerging trends like sustainability accounting, financial technology (FinTech) integration, or even specialised industry-specific marketing or lead generation services.

Remember, when you diversify your service offerings, you not only broaden your revenue stream but also improve client retention by driving long-term client satisfaction because you are addressing evolving needs.

Embracing technological advancements

The tech revolution continues to redefine the accounting and bookkeeping landscape.

As part of your planning for 2024, it’s crucial to start using automation tools, artificial intelligence, and machine learning. These technologies make tasks smoother and more accurate.

For some, adopting these tools is easy. But for others, it might seem challenging and time-consuming. Remember, delaying this change often leads to less time to invest in it later on.

2024 is the year to take control, and here are two workflows that can be streamlined with minimal disruption:

  1. Using an integrated platform for managing your Business Activity Statement obligations. If you are currently lodging via the ATO Portal, you can unlock instant efficiency gains through streamlining this workflow in MYOB Practice.
  2. Drive transaction processing automation across all your client files — not just the ones you work on in-house. Help your clients help themselves! Invest the time on every client this year to review/create/update transaction templates and rules for all their common transactions. Put a measure of success on every client as a 10-20% increase in transaction processing rule automation and the investment will pay for itself for years to come. No more needing to find that 12th rent payment because it will be right the first time!

Collaborative and real-time engagement with your clients is the way of the future.

For many of them, it’s also something they should be exploring in their businesses too.

Why not share your goals and experience, and encourage them to join you on the journey? Strength in numbers applies here.

planning for 2024

Enhancing customer experience through personalisation

Businesses have so much data these days, which often goes underutilised.

You can harness data analytics to understand customer behaviour and preferences better. It’s not just about noting that a client likes golf in a database entry.

Elevate your service beyond numbers by creating personalised experiences. For instance, organise a coffee meetup at a place your client frequents, as observed in their transactions.

To show a deeper understanding of your client’s needs and as part of your planning for 2024, consider things like customised services, communications, and advise accordingly.

Help them securely exchange information with you through implementing client portals.

Also, provide educational resources to help them unlock features in their business management solutions and offer proactive advice.

This enriches the client experience, fostering long-term loyalty and trust.

Focus on cybersecurity and data privacy

Cyber threats are increasing, making strong cybersecurity crucial in 2024 and beyond.

Firstly, start by reviewing your own cyber practices and creating an action plan for areas needing improvement.

Secondly, stay updated on security protocols, follow best practices, and conduct regular security audits. It’s now become a priority for all business owners.

Also, be inspired to think outside the box. For example, if you face resistance from clients about using secure client portals, organise an event with an industry expert.

Educate both your team and clients about cybersecurity. In the current climate, establishing a reputation for security can give you a competitive edge in the digital world.

planning for 2024, data protection

Promote continued learning and education

Accountants and bookkeepers excel at promoting ongoing learning in their own businesses. Have you thought about extending this commitment to your clients as part of planning for 2024?

By providing educational workshops, webinars, and other resources that enhance financial understanding and other business skills, you can empower both your team and your clients.

This fosters a co-operative and knowledgeable partnership.

The Partner Success team at MYOB regularly work with our accountant and bookkeeper partners to host client events, both online or in person.

Popular topics are setting up and using Online Invoice Payments, Flare employee benefits, and InTray/Capture App combined with transaction processing rules and templates.

For more information, click here for a callback.  

As the new year approaches, let’s embark on this journey of transformation together, creating a future where businesses thrive, financial goals are exceeded, and partnerships flourish amidst a dynamic and ever-evolving landscape.

We know that with the rising cost of living, helping clients navigate 2024 will require resilience, efficiency, patience and self-care.

Finally, remember, we are all in this together!