Live from QuickBooks® Connect 2015 in San Jose, Calif., Intuit® announced that Two Roads, EKS&H, LLLP and Polymath, LLC are the top three finalists in its Firm of the Future contest, with Two Roads receiving first place honors. Intuit’s nationwide search launched in June and was a stiff competition, but the winner and two runner-ups exemplify the three pillars of Intuit’s Firm of the Future contest: Get Online, Be a Trusted Advisor and Get Connected.
- Two Roads, Knoxville, Tenn.: First-place winner Two Roads’ Firm of the Future entry impressed the judges for showcasing how their firm helps small businesses feel confident and free to pursue their greatest passion: running their business. The firm’s entry positioned them as a true trusted advisor and not just an accounting firm based on transactions. The firm, which calls their clients, partners, is almost 100 percent cloud-based and humbly accepted the award with great potential for growth.
- EKS&H LLLP, Denver, Co.: Second-place winner EKS&H’s video compared the benefits of working in the cloud to the alternative by portraying a firm of the past vs. a true firm of the future. The entry successfully highlighted the cloud benefits to the firm and 95 percent of its clients who are already working in the cloud, including time savings, better collaboration and the ability to become a true advisor. EKS&H has also offered value pricing since the firm was founded and enjoys interacting with their clients on a regular basis.
- Polymath, LLC, Ashland, Ore.: Third-place winner Polymath has mastered the art of connecting with clients and prospects using social media channels. With 95 percent of their clients on QuickBooks Online, Polymath created a puppet mascot that educates clients on strategic bookkeeping, business strategy and profit planning. The firm is passionate about empowering clients to use the cloud and stay up to speed on cutting-edge technologies.
“There were so many worthy contenders in this competition and we’re proud of each and every firm that showed us how they are embracing the future,” said Jim McGinnis, vice president, Intuit Small Business Group, Accountant Segment. “Congratulations to Two Roads, a firm that has embraced cloud technology to help take their clients to the next level. We look forward to seeing all of our finalists continue to embody the firm of the future values and help educate their peers looking to evolve.”
And the Survey Says …
To understand how firms are prepared for the trends impacting the accounting industry and their future work climate, Intuit commissioned a survey with Constat in September 2015 to learn just how future ready firms are and where the industry is heading. The results highlight that cloud-based tool usage is widespread, value billing is a priority and online marketing is important for future success. Survey highlights include:
- Get in the Cloud
- 65% of accounting pros surveyed believe cloud-based tools have a positive impact on the profession.
- 77% believe cloud-based tools allow them to be more responsive.
- 72% agree cloud-based tools saves them time.
- 66% agree that the cloud reduces costs.
- Be a Trusted Advisor
- 70% of accounting pros believe clients feel they’re getting better value for services when charged fixed rate.
- 58% agree that offering fixed rate/value pricing gives the impression they’re more than just an accountant.
- 56% of accounting pros believe they need to offer fixed rated pricing to stay competitive.
- Get Connected
- 77% of respondents reported that social media is an inexpensive way to reach clients and prospects.
- 68% use social media to build additional relationships with others in the industry.
- 66% prefer Facebook to connect, closely followed by 63% who prefer LinkedIn.
- Facebook is also the top social media network for 62% of accounting professionals when seeking new clients. 55% prefer LinkedIn.
- When building a Web presence, 60% choose You Tube and 56% prefer LinkedIn.
- 74% of accounting pros have a website; 32% update it weekly or more often, and 30% update their website monthly.