Tax season is here, which means that accounting firms need to be at their very best. Below, we highlight 5 Key Ways VoIP Can Help Accounting Firms to outperform and outpace their competition now and into the future:
Total Mobility for Accounting Firms
Among the biggest and most important ways that VoIP (short for Voice over Internet Protocol) phone systems can help accounting firms maximize productivity, efficiency, and client service is by enabling total mobility.
All employees can make and receive calls from anywhere, simply by using an app on their smartphone. When an employee makes outgoing calls with the app, the accounting firm’s name/number shows up on Caller ID. This way, no employee’s personal name/number will show. The feature works even if they are using their personally-owned device. This is not just important for privacy, but it presents a polished and professional image.
Saving Time is Good for Business
A survey has found that 67% of accountants feel that the profession is more competitive than ever. Failing to meet client expectations and standards results in costly churn.
VoIP helps accounting firms win and keep profitable clients thanks to a wide range of features. These features include auto attendant, call forwarding, email-to-text, live call transfer, text messaging, video conferencing, integration with CRM, and much more. These features help by saving time and increasing productivity.
In addition, accounting firms can take advantage of VoIP’s time-of-day routing feature. Time of Day routing allows calls to be directed to certain phones/employees using a distinctive call pattern during business hours. After hours, they can streamline the ring pattern and route calls (with a customized greeting) to either a virtual call center or a priority voicemail box. Time-of-day routing can also be used for holiday closures as well.
Clients spend more time getting the answers, advice, and support they need, and less time on hold or leaving voicemails.
VoIP Expands Market Reach
Accounting firms wanting to reach customers outside their local area may find their area code is a barrier to market penetration. For example, a firm based in Greensboro, NC (area code 336) might face resistance from potential clients in Raleigh, NC (area code 919).
Thanks to VoIP phone systems an accounting firm can easily and inexpensively get (in this example) a phone number with a 919 area code. That instantly puts them on the map for local clients. It is also possible to get toll-free or vanity numbers (e.g. 1-888-TAXHELP).
What’s more, if an accounting firm physically expands into their local and/or new markets, they do not need to pay costly MAC (“move, add, change”) fees. Instead, they simply unplug their phone from their old location(s), and plug them into their new locations(s).
Significant Cost Savings for Accounting Firms
Nobody needs to remind accounting firms of the importance of “doing more with less.” Voice over Internet Protocol is significantly more cost-effective than a traditional phone system like on-site (PBX).
There are minimal upfront costs, and ongoing subscription costs are based on actual users (called “seats”). If an accounting firm expands its roster with full-time or temporary/seasonal help (which is very relevant around tax time), adding users is fast, easy, and affordable. What’s more, domestic long-distance calls are always free.
If you hire seasonal workers, a VoIP solution allows you the flexibility of having those temporary employees work remotely. All they need is a good internet connection. Most VoIP providers give you access via your mobile phone or a virtual phone on your laptop or desktop computer. There is no need to make space for them in the office since they can work remotely.
VoIP is Secure and Reliable
Finally, no discussion of the key ways that VoIP can help accounting firms would be complete without highlighting two top priorities: security and reliability.
With respect to security (which also includes privacy), leading VoIP phone systems run on private and highly secure LAN data networks. Such networks are safeguarded by end-to-end encryption mechanisms. These include (Transport Layer Security/TLS, Secure RTP for transmitting media, robust password protection for managed routers, and secure web-based dashboard access). This high level of security is fortified by 24/7 monitoring, and a comprehensive Telecommunications Fraud Management System that conforms to STIR/SHAKEN standards.
With respect to reliability, leading VoIP phone systems are “over-engineered” to support high traffic demands and maintain a 99.99% uptime standard. They also leverage a geographic cloud infrastructure to automatically reroute traffic in the event of a local power outage — which is a level of reliability that far surpasses conventional landline phone systems. Top this off with local service provided by experienced telecommunication specialists, and you have a recipe for world-class reliability.
The Final Word
These five ways that Voice over Internet Protocol can help accounting firms combine to improve productivity, efficiency, and client satisfaction, while at the same time reducing costs. In the accounting world, this makes VoIP a “high gross profit margin” investment. Outside the accounting world, getting VoIP is referred to a little differently: IT’S A NO BRAINER!
Contact Carolina Digital Phone today and schedule your free live guided demo of our all-in-one VoIP phone system. We can visit your accounting firm, or connect with you over the web. Call us now at (336) 544-4000.