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Selecting Technology to Improve Communication and Collaboration



Effective communication and collaboration are pivotal aspects of delivering stellar client service. In an accounting firm, where clients may engage with multiple departments, technology can improve communication and collaboration across the firm.

We recently selected a new technology solution that not only caters to an individual department’s needs but also facilitates firm-wide collaboration.

 

Transitioning to HubSpot

Boomer Consulting, Inc. is currently transitioning to a new Customer Relationship Management (CRM) system. Before this transition, we used multiple systems to accomplish what HubSpot will do, including Zendesk Sell, Client Eye and Asana. While these systems have great features, the patchwork nature of our prospecting tools created information silos and communication hurdles among the marketing, sales, and client experience (CX) teams and across the company.


Some of the challenges we wanted to solve with the new solution include:

  •  Limited accessibility. Not all team members could access or retrieve necessary information from Zendesk Sell without in-depth training, causing dependencies and delays.

  • Fragmented communication. Heather Robinson, our Marketing Manager, frequently had to manually relay information for prospecting, leading to inefficiencies.

  • Prospecting inefficiencies. Most prospecting efforts were confined to emails, lacking integration with other tools and potentially allowing leads to slip through the cracks.


After discussing options and evaluating different solutions for about a year, we decided to implement HubSpot. This decision was driven by the need for a unified platform that could integrate with other technologies like Asana, which we use for project and task management.

 

The benefits of a unified solution

Our goal with this integration is to streamline processes, automate workflows, and enhance communication across all teams. Some of the benefits of selecting one integrated platform include:

  • Enhanced communication. Having one platform will simplify internal communication, making it easier to share information across departments.

  • Task automation. We look forward to automating task creation related to client interactions and deal closures, reducing manual efforts and increasing accuracy.

  • Advanced scoring systems. Our new platform incorporates lead and member scoring to effectively gauge client engagement and satisfaction. For example, if a particular prospect opens all of our emails, they might be open to a discovery call. On the other hand, if a current client never opens our emails, this could indicate they’re unhappy with their membership, and we can proactively reach out to discuss their concerns.

  • Integration capabilities. HubSpot offers integrations with many of the tools we already use, including Asana. These integrations facilitate better workflow between different tools and platforms.


The shift towards a more integrated approach highlights a crucial strategy in technology selection for CPA firms: the need for solutions that transcend departmental boundaries. While specialized tools may offer best-in-class features for specific tasks, their benefits are often offset by the lack of integration with other systems, leading to fragmented workflows and communication barriers.

 

Criteria for selecting technology

If you’re currently evaluating potential technologies in your firm, consider the following criteria during your selection process:

  • Integration potential. Will the new solution seamlessly integrate with other tools your firm uses?

  • Usability across service lines or departments. Is the tool user-friendly and accessible for all departments, ensuring all team members can leverage it without extensive training?

  • Scalability. Can the system grow and adapt as your firm expands or the scope of services evolves?

  • Support and development. Will continuous developer support and regular updates keep the system efficient and secure?


Prioritizing cohesive and integrated solutions over isolated best-in-class systems fosters better communication, collaboration and client service. Instead of limiting the decision to one department or service line, make sure your selection committee includes a cross-section of the firm. This will help ensure you select a system that resolves multiple challenges different departments face, enhancing overall firm productivity.


 

Could your firm benefit from getting firm management and IT leaders in alignment?


The Boomer Technology Circles are a peer group of firm and technology leaders in the accounting profession who benefit from aligning IT and firm strategy and building valuable long-term relationships with solution providers and peers. Apply now to start building confidence in your firm’s technology decisions.


 

Parker Bohon, Solutions Coordinator at Boomer Consulting, Inc., is excited to work closely with our members. Her primary focus is on our communities, including the Boomer Technology Circles, CIO Circle, and Marketing and Business Development Circle.

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