Employee Portals: Boost Productivity In Your Accountancy Firm

In these economically challenging times, finding ways to maintain a competitive advantage through increased productivity is essential for all accountants. Whether you are a sole practitioner or an accountancy firm, the possibility of getting your work done quicker and easier is tantalizing. And that’s exactly what’s offered with an employee portal. So if you are looking to enhance performance, employee engagement, internal communications, and knowledge management within your business, in this article, you’ll find out why an employee portal is the solution you’re looking for.

What is an employee portal?

Also known as a company intranet, an employee portal is an internal website featuring all the tools and information that staff need in their daily work. Think of it as the heart of your business, as the central hub for all work-related data and internal communications.

A well-designed employee portal enables accountants to effectively manage their documents, policies, and procedures as well as automating business processes and providing seamless communications.

With such great benefits offered, it’s no wonder then that an increasing number of accountants are introducing employee portals to simplify the running of the practice. This means that your fee earners will have more time to spend on providing better services to clients and reaching out to potential new clients.

Are you wondering how exactly an employee portal will do this? Carry on reading to learn more about what can be achieved with an employee portal.

Enhanced performance

Document management is a perennial problem in accountancy firms. Where is the latest version of the International Accounting Standards? Who has the updated expenses claim form? Where are the financials for ABC Ltd? Too often, staff members are having to search through hundreds of emails or overloaded shared drives and generally waste time trying to locate the information from a colleague.

A document management system on the employee portal eliminates all that. Instead, all corporate information, including client relationship management data, is stored centrally on the employee portal. An intuitive navigation menu together with an advanced search functionality means that staff can quickly and easily locate the information they’re after. Searches can be done by title, tags, author, or topic. Having all this information at employees’ fingertips will result in improved service to clients as queries are dealt with more efficiently and client relationship management data is all in one place.

What’s more, the self-service aspect means that staff members have control over their work. This is empowering and helps to improve overall levels of team morale and staff engagement.

Furthermore, the employee portal will improve performance by automating processes.  Business processes in accounting firms have traditionally been very paper-based. Whether it’s setting up a new client on the system, ordering office supplies, or completing a request for annual leave, chances are there are multiple forms to complete.

An employee portal allows for the automation of all paper-based forms. Using a simple and instinctive form builder tool or by customizing existing templates, even technical novices can create online forms. What’s more, the intranet will make sure that the form is automatically routed to the appropriate staff member for action.

Improved internal communications

Even if you’re a sole practitioner with just one or two support staff, communications can still be an issue. This is especially true if those support staff are actually working remotely from home.  An employee portal is a great facilitator of communication. The ability to message, instantly share information with colleagues, contribute to blogs and forums as well as a corporate news and events page, allows for seamless communication whether you have 3 or 300 members of staff.

What’s more, the employee portal is fully mobile optimized which means that when it comes to communication, even your remote staff or those that are out and about visiting clients can be kept in the loop.

Better knowledge management

The purpose of accountants is essentially to ensure their clients are compliant with tax and financial regulations. This simple statement, though, masks the sheer amount of knowledge that is required. However, more often than not, this knowledge is in the heads of individual staff members, and knowledge transfer and sharing within an accountancy firm can be an issue.

The employee portal offers help with these familiar issues, too. An employee directory is a great way to showcase the knowledge and expertise that individual staff members have. Staff directories with a short biography, including subject knowledge and areas of interest, will enable employees to quickly locate the right person with the relevant expertise. So if a client has a specific query on tax obligations, then they can immediately be put in contact with a staff member who can deal with that query. Likewise, if an employee requires support on a complex or difficult issue, then help is readily at hand with the staff directory.

Keeping abreast of all the changes in legislation as well as financial rules and regulations can also be a challenge for accounting firms. The employee portal acts as a central repository for all the accumulated corporate knowledge. Rather than having to consult multiple websites or external databases, all the relevant rules and regulations will be held on the employee portal. Your employees can be confident that they are accessing the very latest information, thereby eliminating the possibility for embarrassing or expensive human error.

What’s more, the employee portal offers e-learning and staff training and development opportunities. This could take many forms from videos to wikis and webinars. In addition, staff will be able to complete the training at a time that suits them and can even do so remotely. And providing such flexibility for fee earners in particular is a great bonus.

Employee portals make a difference

Quite simply, an employee portal will streamline the running of your practice, giving you more transparency and a better overview of workflow and performance. This means that you’ll have more time to spend on adding value to your clients. And it will help you to maintain that all-important competitive advantage in challenging times.

If you want to find out more about employee portals for accountants, then get in touch with the friendly team at MyHub for an informal discussion on the possibilities.

NOTE: This guest article was provided by MyHub Intranet and is used with permission.

Comments are closed.