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It's Not Just About the Numbers

Posted by Gayatri Wood on 11 Dec 2015

Not Just Numbers is a small accounting firm based in Leeds who started in 2011. They are passionate about helping small businesses grow through the use of cloud technology, with Spotlight Reporting being the 'icing on the cake' in this process. We talked to Debbie Whitaker, the Managing Director about how Spotlight has helped demonstrate that they're truly not just about the numbers.

How do you use Spotlight in a client meeting?

Most of our client meetings are on monthly or quarterly basis. For these, we prepare a set of management accounts and run a Spotlight Dashboard or Report. We always use the actions and recommendations page to provide commentary on what is currently happening in the business and what can be done to reach the client’s particular goals. We always bring the dashboard or report to the meeting with the client and sit down and talk them through it. This allows us to effectively communicate our advice and gain feedback from the client.

How do your clients respond?

Our clients absolutely love the visuals that Spotlight provides. A lot of our clients better understand and grasp our recommendations with the accompanying visuals. Particularly popular for clients is providing a sales pie chart, with a turnover split. We’ve received feedback from our clients that their previous accountants were only providing the sales codes. We’re really passionate about getting to know our client’s businesses really well, so we even split the sales codes and have trackers to be able to provide a lot of information for them about their business.

Plenty of our clients also love having a pie chart illustrating different income streams, so they can see exactly where their income is coming from and what streams they may need to work on to achieve their goals. Everyone seems to love the 'this year' versus 'last year' measures so they can visualise how they improving. To be able to encapsulate everything that’s important to the business visually helps us present that we are not just about the numbers.

How do you utilise forecasting for your clients?

For clients that we are preparing forecasts, we’re able to hand them straight over to the bank which is fantastic. Our clients love that we can discuss different scenarios and update the forecast which then automatically updates the corresponding charts. Historically, we’ve had only numbers on a spreadsheet and every time you update the reports, it requires a lot of manual work to get into an updated and printable format.

How do you position your point of difference to potential clients?

I was actually seeing a potential client early in the week that is a new startup business. I was able to demonstrate in our face-face meeting that we’re not just about the numbers through our use of technology, process and the subsequent outcomes we’ve achieved for clients. We let them know what technology we use including; Xero, Receipt Bank, TripCatcher, Chaser, iZettle and Spotlight. The feedback from potential clients is they love what information, insights and advice we can provide them through the technology we use and our approach. Everything else we do, whether it’s our website, events we run, or information we provide all reinforces that we’re not just about the numbers.

Hear more from Debbie on how she uses cloud technology to demonstrate they’re not just about the numbers here:

[embed]https://vimeo.com/143268362[/embed]

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