As a solo practitioner or owner of a small law firm, you may be wondering why you should care about where bookkeeping will be one year from today. Not only are you too busy to even think about the state of your books, but now someone wants you to read a blog post about the future of bookkeeping!? This better be good!
Bookkeeping Software is Going Online
After only three years, QuickBooks Desktop is forcing its clients to abandon its desktop software.
Although I may not be able to tell you every reason that QuickBooks is choosing to move its services online, I can one reason is that it will allow the company to focus all of its support to a single product. With the desktop versions, QuickBooks has had to support Mac and PC users and within PC, they have to support Pro and Enterprise users. I am certain that it will be much easier for the company to train people how to use QuickBooks Online instead of ten different desktop versions.
The move online will also allow QuickBooks to implement the newest and latest updates to its software without approval from its users. If you bought the desktop version, and an update came out, the option to refuse the update may have prevented you from seeing the newest upgrade’s benefits. Now QuickBooks can fix a glitch without the costs of using customer support to correct issues that resulted from a client’s refusal to upgrade.
While the software makers have been pushing people to move online, several have already made the jump. Because more people are spending longer stretches of time away from their desks, more and more have witnessed the benefits of accessing their accounts at any time and from any location. Smart phones and tablets have made it easier to go mobile and so the demand to push QuickBooks and other companies to move their software to the cloud is high.
Why you should care: Not only are you stressed about bringing in more clients and managing your practice or small law firm, but now your desktop bookkeeping software is losing its support. The software companies sent you letters and emails that told you to switch to their online versions, but you kept putting the move off because you didn’t have the time. Now your practice is in a state of emergency because your offline software is unusable, and you haven’t done any research into what type of software you should consider using next. You don’t have the time for this; you have a big case that you need to prep for and you just spilled coffee on your shirt. Don’t let this be the one more thing that becomes an emergency! Switch to an online bookkeeping software now so that you can save your sanity later on.
Bookkeepers are becoming more proactive
A lot of people think that bookkeepers only record daily financial transactions—that they balance the ledgers, reconcile the bank statements, and basically perform data entry. While you have the option to hire an employee to provide you with data entry services, bookkeeping software is making the process of data entry more automated. This change is diminishing the need for people who can do data entry, which in turn, is changing the role of bookkeepers and the services that they can provide.
Part of this change involves the creation of future financial reports. While reviewing your financial reports from the previous month or quarter is critical, this process is typically very reactive and doesn’t teach small firms or solo practitioners how they can grow their practices.
Solo practitioners and small law firms need a bookkeeper who can forecast the futures of their businesses through budgeting and benchmarking. They need someone who can help them to make business decisions that will allow their practices to grow, and someone who can read their financial reports, point out areas that need improvement, and make suggestions on how to fix them.
Why you should care: Finding a bookkeeper who is proactive can take the burden of bookkeeping off of your shoulders. A proactive bookkeeper will maintain regularly scheduled meetings with you so that you can review your financial situation and give you advice on where your practice should be headed. With the right bookkeeper, you can focus on the law knowing that a professional is looking out for your practice.
Legal Ease Bookkeeping, LLC can help move your law firm into the future by switching over to on online software or by showing you what a great bookkeeper looks like. If you would like to understand your financial reports better so you can use that information to grow your practice, please use this link to schedule your free 30-minute consultation.