Effective Communication

Communication is an art of collaboration that happens between people or organizations.

To be able to sustain, persevere and prevail in the current market, effective communication is very essential. Even more so, when it comes to accounting firms and chartered accountants. Whether you are riding solo as an accountant or part of a much bigger organization, it is very important to have an idea of ‘what is effective communication’  in order to maintain your client base. Poor communication and untimely responses from your end will contribute to a high scale of inefficiency.

Why is it important to have timely communication with the client ?

Despite what field you are in, it is very important to understand that clients are the blood of any firm. Having clients is what keeps the business running. So it is imperative that you know how to properly set up and follow the process of client communication .

The client needs to, and expects to, be aware of an event or situation that would impact him/her directly. Having a timely communication will put the client at ease and will improve overall reliability of the firm in the market. This will open the doors for new opportunities.  

Timely communication includes both reaching out to the client, and providing timely responses to the client. When a client reaches out to the firm or an accountant for whatever reason, by giving a timely response, it will help establish a network of trust and reliability between the client and the firm.

Be it, an audit for the client, or going through the finances, having proper client communication will not only help the client understand and assess the work done by you, but also help you or your firm in getting the much needed information from the client, required for you to do your job properly. Communication works best when both parties are involved. So it is essential for a firm or its individual to set up and follow a timely communication protocol with the client, so there are no gaps in the information transfer and inefficiency can be avoided.

Effective communication not only helps the client, but also the firm on a whole, as it becomes easier to handle and process the information. Timely communication with the client will help you get any lingering doubts clarified and neither you nor the client would have to spend your precious time waiting. As a Chartered Accountant, you are constantly at war with time, and having timely communication with the client will save precious time.

How to improve client communication?

Just speaking about having client communication is not enough.

  1. The firm as a whole should have a standardized set of protocols that the entire organization  would have to follow to ensure that there is timely communication with their respective clients without interference from the administration . The team members  should be made aware of such process and they have to follow it.
  2. Before reaching out to the client, there needs to be a seamless internal communication within the firm, so that the information flows uninterrupted. This will ensure that you have the right information at the right time and are not scrambling when the time for client communication comes.
  3. Utilize the tools designed for chartered accountants that have some sort of automated communication with the client, through texts or emails. This will reduce the lag between the information flow and lessen the burden from the individuals.
  4. Keep the subject lines in emails or texts concise and to the point. This will reduce any misinformation and misunderstandings which might cause a delay in the work.
  5. Redirect your clients to a more generic form of client communication such as blogs and newsletters and make sure your clients view them and get the much needed information and updates pertaining to them.
  6. Last but not the least, communicate with the client regularly through the tools, social media, or just good old fashioned face to face communication.

As a part of accounting you need to be working much more closely with your clients and live up to their expectations and needs, and it becomes your duty to understand, setup, and follow a process of timely communication with your client. This will help foster better relationships between the firm and the client, so the firm will grow and tap into new opportunities while maintaining the strong foundations with the existing client base.

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