What does it mean to be a full service accounting firm?

9 min

What does it mean to be a full service accounting firm?

Running an accounting firm today means being prepared to meet new challenges. It's no longer just keeping your books up-to-date, or helping set up a new business from scratch. The accounting business has evolved, and now you need to be able to provide insight on a diverse range of issues; from cash flow management to company valuations. What does it mean to be a full service accounting firm nowadays?

Published on | Updated on

what is a full-service accounting firm?

There is no official definition of full service in accounting. The term "full service" means different things to different people, but it usually refers to the ability of an accountant to provide all kinds of services for their clients. This concept does not have an exact definition; it depends on the accounting regulations in force in each country.

The full service must above all meet the needs of the manager. It can be about small business owners needing to outsource some work during the launching phase or a CEO needing a provision team to prevent potential losses in value. Or to meet the need for occasional reinforcement of administrative and accounting work during the closing of accounts, or to provide operational support in:

  • Audits
  • Compilations and reviews
  • Tax planning and consulting
  • Tax preparation
  • Valuation
  • Provision bookkeeping
  • IT services
  • Investment sales
  • Insurance sales
  • Industry specific consulting

The growing trend toward "full service" accounting has led many companies to seek out firms that can help them with more than just their accounting needs. Rather than falling into "scope creep" (a well-known plague of accounting firms), CPAs prefer to make it a full-fledged line in their service catalog. But what does it require to be a full service accounting firm?

It's all about the data

Let’s face it, when you think of accounting firms, you think of number crunching. You think of spreadsheets and charts and graphs. And while this isn’t wrong, it’s only part of the picture.

The truth is that accounting firms need to be able to provide more than just numbers if they want to stay relevant and competitive in the industry. The growth of Big Data and cloud computing has made it possible for companies to have access to more information than ever before. This means that CFOs are able to see their business from a new perspective — one that allows them to make better decisions based on real-time data.

As a result, they need accounting firms that can help them make sense of this wealth of information. Many accounting firms are already doing this by utilizing technology to automate processes, improve efficiency and increase profitability. However, there are still many firms who aren’t leveraging their data to its full potential.

  • Automating processes with software that turns data into actionable information
  • Using the power of analytics to make better decisions and provision wealth
  • Utilizing technology such as artificial intelligence (AI) algorithms to automate tasks

Being able to interpret today's business information

Accounting firms have always been focused on providing financial statements, tax returns and audits. But in 2022, we’re going to see more accountants become consultants for business owners because they are able to provide advice about how to make their businesses run better.

For instance, many businesses don't realize they are growing until they are already out of space or they need help with something like a new product launch or marketing campaign. A full service accounting firm will be able to interpret the data and help their clients assess where they need to go next, so they can make better decisions in the future.

Give advice on real-world issues

Accountants may not all be CPAs (Certified Public Accountants), but that doesn't mean they can't give advice on real-world issues or help with other areas of business. At an advanced level, for example, an accountant who has taken the time to become a CPA can offer more than just tax services — he or she can also provide accounting and bookkeeping services for small businesses, as well as legal advice on how to structure a company for maximum effectiveness and profitability.

Accountants are also becoming more involved in other aspects of running a business like payroll management and IT support. Many accountants have set up relationships with vendors who can help them with these services, which allows them to focus on providing value-added services rather than just doing basic bookkeeping tasks such as invoice reconciliation and bank reconciliation.

Making use of web apps and cloud services to stay in touch with clients

To stay competitive, you need to be able to provide a full range of services that help your clients grow their businesses. That means making sure you have access to the tools that will enable you to do this. One of these tools is the cloud.

Cloud computing allows companies to store their data online, and access it from anywhere at any time. This allows for real-time collaboration on projects without having to email attachments back-and-forth all day long (which drains productivity). It also gives you access to all of your documents no matter where you are located.

Use automation to streamline routine tasks

This is where most firms start their journey toward becoming a full service accounting firm in 2022. Making use of automation saves time on low-value added tasks and helps business owners focus on high-value work like strategic planning and analysis.

Many firms already have software that automates tax filings, invoicing and other repetitive processes. The next step is automating more complex tasks like financial reporting, provision accounting solutions and client communication — both of which require manual intervention at most firms today.

Schedule payments EN

Expand your scope of action

Schedule your customers' payments yourself and give them control through our approval system.

Book your demo

Having an understanding of how the business environment is changing

The accounting industry has undergone some major changes in recent years. The most notable of these is the rise of technology and the way it has changed the way we do business. We live in a world where data is king and companies need to be able to process and analyze that data quickly if they are going to stay competitive.For example, many accountants today use cloud-based systems that allow them to access all aspects of their clients' businesses from their own computers or mobile devices.

The rise of online accounting software has changed how businesses operate. Instead of coming to your client's office once or twice a month, you can now access all ther financial information from anywhere at any time. This gives you much greater visibility into how your client's business is performing and what areas need attention.

Another huge change has been in how accounting firms are structured. In the past, most accountants worked for large companies such as KPMG or Deloitte. Today, there is a lot more competition between small firms that offer more personal service while still offering advanced technology capabilities.

The full service accounting firm needs to evolve, but that doesn't mean abandoning what you do best. Just adopt the right mindset to keep up with the changing industry:

  1. Be ready for change
  2. Develop relationships
  3. Be adaptable
  4. Embrace technology

Speaking of technology, here's one you should consider: Libeo's integrations to your accounting tools. Synchronise your entries, eliminate double entry and export all your accounting documents.

Connectez tous vos outils favoris EN

Connect your accounting tools

To help you always provide the best service to your business clients, Libeo saves you time by integrating with all your accounting production or pre-accounting software.

Book your demo

FAQ

What are the different types of accounting firms?

The most common types of accounting firms are:

  1. Personal accountancy firms - these specialise in providing bookkeeping, tax and business advice for small businesses.
  2. Business accountancy firms - these provide bookkeeping, tax and business advice for larger businesses.
  3. Taxation firms - these specialise in providing tax planning and compliance services.

You will also like

Cloud accounting UK

How The UK's Business Industry Factors Cloud Computing into Their Accounting Practices

Have you ever wondered why the UK business industry has such a high adoption rate for cloud computing over the rest of Europe? There are a lot of reasons for the UK's cloud-first mentality, but one factor in particular is government incentive programs that incentivize businesses to adopt cloud solutions. A blog around how the cloud helps businesses deal with accounting and book keeping.

8 min

Workflow automation

Essential Workflow Automation For Accountants and CFOs

Workflow automation is a set of activities that are put into place to establish a work process, with the objective of increasing efficiency and reducing errors. In an accounting context this can be especially important. Accurate financial reporting is critical in accounting as a successful business depends on it. Yet accounting is highly regulated, so any mistakes can be costly.

10 min

Xero accountant

Using Xero as an Accountant? Enhance the Payment Experience with Libeo

Do you use Xero as your accounting software? As powerful as it is, Xero doesn’t do approvals of invoices or payments. Did you know that Libeo can improve on what Xero itself misses out on? If not, then find out how Libeo can improve the payment experience for your business.

6 min

logo
logo

Libeo is registered by ACPR (Prudential Control and Resolution Authority) under the number 844679068 (approval can be consulted in the Register of Financial Agents – www.regafi.fr) as a payment services agent of the electronic money institution Treezor. Treezor, registered in the Paris Trade and Companies Register under number 807465059, whose registered office is located at 33 avenue de Wagram, 75017 Paris, acting as an electronic money institution within the meaning of Article L.525-1 of the French Monetary and Financial Code and approved by ACPR (Prudential Control and Resolution Authority), is located at 4 Place de Budapest CS 92459 75336 Paris Cedex 09 as an electronic money institution under number 16798, approval which can be consulted on the ACPR website in the Register of Financial Agents (REGAFI): www.regafi.fr.

logobanque-de-france_logo-white
fnfe_logo-white
bnp-paribas_logo-whitedocaposte_logo-whitelogo
appStoregoogleplay