Templates provide consistency across procedures in an accounting firm and across the level of service delivered to clients. Often a KPI dashboard or report can be tied into a particular value-add package. Having it templated means every client is receiving the same base level of service, created in a fraction of the time.
You can create many different templates that fit with your practice and service offerings. Whether you look at templates that are industry specific, profit focused, tax planning, or provide a monthly performance snapshot. All templates provide accountants with numerous benefits. Here's six of the key benefits;
1. Let you focus on what’s really important to your client
A huge benefit of templating is that you can spend more time focusing on the meeting. You can focus on tailoring the advice and the added value you’re delivering to your client rather than creating dashboards or reports from scratch.
2. Templates increase flexibility
Templates actually increase flexibility. They’re easy to update and they provide consistency across your firm. Templates can be improved regularly to meet the client’s needs, any changes in services, or any updates from the product.
3. Easy to use
Having access to a library of templates gives you the flexibility of being able to choose from a diverse set of preconfigured interactions, without needing to change anything. When you are inducting new staff, it makes it really easy for them to learn your procedures having templates to follow.
4. Provide consistency and uniformity to clients
Standardisation of graphs, colors, text and layout is a vital part of clarity. This helps clients know how to navigate the dashboard or report. It also helps your clients understand your offering clearly. Having a dashboard or report templated means a client knows exactly what they’re getting and can easily track their progress by whatever frequency they’re receiving them.
From a branding perspective templates ensure particular colours or sets of colours are used, your logo has been added and you have consistent introductory text explaining the report or dashboard. This is a great way to achieve brand consistency and make your templates easily recognisable as product of your accounting firm.
5. Speed-up development time
Templates allow firms to produce dashboards and reports in a small fraction of the time it would take to do traditionally. If every individual had to create what they wanted from scratch, there would be a lot of time wasted and a chance of manual errors. Having templates already there means you just need to import the time period of the data you’d like to visualise and give it a check over. Dashboards and reports can literally be created in seconds!
6. Easily measure effectiveness
Having standardised templates means you can A/B test templates effectiveness for particular groups of clients. It’s also a great way to evaluate the performance of clients receiving services that include dashboards and reports to those that aren’t. This can be a really good marketing tool to upsell to those clients not yet taking advantage of these services. If you specialise in a particular industry, having standardised templates across them is a great way to analyse the comparable sets of data to find trends amongst your clients as well.
Utilising templates means you have clear snippets of data you are visualising, key points to talk about and these can derive the next actions to be taken. With Spotlight, we provide you with some easy templates for you to use straight away or to slightly tweak to suit your firm. We also have some new industry specific templates, for you to use with particular clients straight away. Take a look at how you can use them for your clients today.
Take a look at the templates we've created for specific industries to save you time.