There’s no doubt that tax season is draining for accounting firms of all sizes. By the end of a long few months, though, accountants can look forward to getting compensated for all the extra effort expended during tax time. But the reality is, once the grueling season is complete, many accountants find themselves chasing down client payments. This can lead to frustration among team members, conflicts with clients, and even burnout.
You’ve worked hard, so shouldn’t you be paid what you’re owed without a struggle?
Six tips to avoid chasing client payments
Getting paid by clients doesn’t have to cause headaches. Using flexible time and billing software designed specifically for accountants can help teams streamline the client invoicing and payment processes without adding time to the workday.
To simplify your firm’s billing and payment processes so you get paid fast, keep these six tips in mind.
Tip #1: Accept online payment
From online shopping to credit card payments, dealing with bills online has quickly become the standard. Online bills are more convenient for clients since they can be paid immediately with minimal hassle—no checks, stamps, or trips to the post office required.
Some accounting firms may be hesitant to update their payment processes, but a good accounting practice management software solution provides safe online payment options. With Mango Payments, your firm can accept credit card and automated clearing house (eCheck) payments with minimal fees, giving you access to client payments in 24–48 hours.
Bonus points: because online payments are more secure than traditional payment methods and require less effort from clients, they can enhance firms’ reputations as client-focused and tech-savvy.
Never Again: Chasing Clients to Get Paid
Don't waste valuable time chasing down payments. Follow our tips to to stop chasing clients for payments and start getting paid faster!
Tip #2: Lean into client collaboration tools
Save your firm administrative time, effort, and cost by moving your billing processes to the cloud.
By taking advantage of cloud-based client collaboration tools to send invoices (like a secure file-sharing system or client portal), you can get bills and other important information safely in the hands of clients in seconds and avoid lengthy phone conversations or past-due bill notices.
Putting your billing online also gives clients more convenient access to file information such as billing statements and progress notes, empowering clients to seek answers to common questions before they reach out to your office.
Tip #3: Know your clients
You know your clients best—which means you know which clients are most likely to go with the flow and which have a reputation for calling every few days with questions or concerns about their accounts.
Every accounting firm has clients that require a little more hand-holding. For those clients, anticipating and addressing questions before they arise can save team members valuable administrative time and help all parties avoid frustration.
For example, some clients appreciate detailed invoices each month outlining all charges, so tailor your invoices by crafting detailed or narrative-style invoices based on client preference.
Automated invoicing software keeps invoicing flexible, allowing accounting firms to boost client convenience.
Tip #4: Schedule recurring invoices
If you’re like most accountants, you don’t have the bandwidth to spend a day or two every month drafting invoices one by one and following up on past-due bills. Shouldn’t your time be spent doing the high-level tasks you were trained for?
Here’s a time-saving tip: use automation tools to optimize your billing processes effortlessly in the background.
With the right practice management software, busy accountants can schedule recurring invoices on all client accounts, so firms can get paid quickly without wasting time printing or emailing repetitive charges each month. Both recurring and custom invoices can be batch emailed to multiple clients in a few clicks, and accountants can use invoice templates to quickly craft client invoices on recurring, retainer, fixed, or hourly accounts.
Tip #5: Integrate time tracking and billing
Another way firms can prevent client billing delays is by ensuring invoices are accurate the first time they’re submitted.
Invoicing errors not only sow client distrust, but they can also lead to unexpectedly low revenue for accounting firms. Instead of tracking time or expenses on sticky notes or receipts and manually transferring this data to your invoicing software each month, simplify the time and billing process with web-based time and expense trackers that populate client invoices quickly and accurately.
Cloud-based timers allow firms to track effort across multiple client accounts in a click. With the flexibility to add detailed descriptions and pause or edit time tracked, staying organized on each account is simple. When it’s time to submit bills for payment, simply invoice off of time tracked and avoid the error-prone process of manually entering time and expense data.
Tip #6: Know your value
We’ve discussed ways firms can get paid faster by increasing invoicing transparency with tools like detailed invoices and automated time trackers. But there’s another way firms can support fast payments with minimal hassle: setting payment expectations up front with value-based billing contracts.
Value-based contracts allow firms to establish set costs for specific tasks, simplifying billing for clients and reducing client questions and disputes throughout the account life cycle.
Value-based billing incentivizes time-saving practices that minimize overhead costs and administrative time. This benefits both accounting firms and clients.
Whether your firm chooses to move fully to value-based billing, retain an hourly billing model, or adopt hybrid contracts, you’ll want billing software you can rely on to support your preferred practices.
You work hard—get paid for it with support from Mango
Stop chasing client payments
If you’re tired of chasing down client payments, defending your firm’s value, and creating client invoices manually each month, you’re not alone.
Mango simplifies the time tracking, invoicing, and payment processes for busy accounting firms so teams can get paid fast on time, and with minimal effort.
With Mango, you can take some of the pain out of tax season with features like:
- Automation tools designed for accountants
- Client-friendly features
- Bank-grade security standards
Getting paid is safer and easier than ever before with Mango. To see for yourself how Mango can transform your business practices, schedule a free demo.
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