The Growing Need to Stay Connected

Louise Wilson

Accountancy practice management software has come a long way. Today, features like automated billing and reconciliations are easily integrated into the day-to-day practice workflow of Wolters Kluwer Tax & Accounting UK customers.

Our employees work side by side with our customers to create and manage these solutions – driven by a deep understanding of their needs and addressing the rapid changes in their environment.

However, it’s often hard to look beyond improving performance in day-to-day operations. Amid Brexit, the COVID-19 pandemic and other disruptions, accountancy practices and their clients are dealing with an unpredictable economic landscape. Future business planning can appear daunting.

However, technology can support accountancy practices (and their clients) in making informed business decisions, and planning for the future. In the first part of our Accountancy Practice Management for Future-Fit Growth series, we’ll explore how they can use technology to define and easily track Key Performance Indicators (KPIs). Doing so gives practices closer control of performance tracking, and deeper insights that will inform strategic growth plans.

Saving Time

For several decades, business technology platforms have enabled practices to track performance metrics that they have customised. This highlights areas that qualify for improvement and underpins strategic planning.

Contemporary technology, such as CCH KPI Monitoring, makes setting up KPIs faster and easier for accountancy practices than ever before. This is vital today. The current business landscape demands that firms assess and amend KPIs more frequently, based on fresh market variables. KPIs such as client retention rate and business time-to-recovery have become increasingly prominent performance indicators in the past year. If clunky technology makes KPI management difficult, practices have less time and insight to plan future growth.

Reducing Risk
CCH KPI Monitoring makes it far easier to track KPIs and report on them. This is fundamental in minimising risk. For example, if a KPI is set to track and escalate debt filtered by overdue dates, the ability to easily set alerts and automatically generate reports is critical to practice performance management.

Some practices are manually running monthly reports to measure KPIs. Others are running real-time reporting engines, a key feature of CCH KPI Monitoring. This latter solution allows practices to review essential data at any time – covering both performance management and compliance requirements. They can do so remotely or on-premise.

This means that firms can assess issues before they become problems, and thus act proactively. Real-time reporting is a true asset in building a future-fit practice.

The Proof is in the Practice
A number of Wolters Kluwer customers have been using CCH KPI Monitoring for several years now. Our customers look to us when they need to be right. Ryecroft Glenton has successfully integrated CCH KPI Monitoring with its own system. This consolidates information from several sources, including CCH Central and CCH Practice Management.

“We can use the year end date to trigger a sequence of reminders. Have we asked for the books? Have they been received? If a request to a client has been outstanding for a certain period, the partner will receive an alert via email. For limited companies, we can monitor the corporation tax and Companies House filing deadlines – as well as the different deadlines for pension schemes”

– Ian Smith, partner at Ryecroft Glenton

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“Apogee are not just aprinting company, theyconsult with us and go onto deliver a full end to endservice from concept toinstallation. They go aboveand beyond and we lookforward to continuing ourjourney with them”

Corporate events agency who benefited from greener graphics initiative

“Apogee are not just aprinting company, theyconsult with us and go onto deliver a full end to endservice from concept toinstallation. They go aboveand beyond and we lookforward to continuing ourjourney with them”

Corporate events agency who benefited from greener graphics initiative

“Apogee are not just aprinting company, theyconsult with us and go onto deliver a full end to endservice from concept toinstallation. They go aboveand beyond and we lookforward to continuing ourjourney with them”

Corporate events agency who benefited from greener graphics initiative

“Apogee are not just aprinting company, theyconsult with us and go onto deliver a full end to endservice from concept toinstallation. They go aboveand beyond and we lookforward to continuing ourjourney with them”

The last few years have been a valuable lesson in the importance of staying connected with each other and our clients.  With a whole raft of digital tools at our collective disposal, hybrid working now commonplace for many businesses and consumers becoming more demanding, it has become challenging for accountancy practices to deliver excellent and consistent customer care.

In response, organisations across the UK have been harnessing outsourced switchboard, telephone answering and managed live chat services to improve customer service, capture more leads and support new hybrid-work behaviours – all with the help of leading outsourced communications business, Moneypenny.

Handling more than 20 million calls and live chats every year, Moneypenny understands the need for customer care and connectivity all too well.  It’s why the business is so focused on delivering service-enhancing switchboard features, such as its world-first integration with Microsoft Teams, to minimise in-house interruption and crucially, improve the caller experience.  

Here, Louise Wilson, head of the finance sector at Moneypenny, talks about the value of the integration and why accountancy practices must stay connected.

Shifting Habits
Louise said: “The accountancy sector, like so many others, really got to grips with the value of Microsoft Teams during the pandemic and it led to a whole new way of working for many businesses.  As soon as we spotted the shifting habits of clients, we wanted to develop a product that would add value to their operations. At almost the same time Microsoft opened access to its developer platform Graph API, which made it possible for us to let clients take calls through Teams in a way that is cost-effective, easy to run and easy to manage.”

Moneypenny’s in-house team designed and built the solution, which converts a standard voice call into a Microsoft Teams call and digitally announces clients’ transfers from their main switchboard number. This pioneering approach affords clients the flexibility to handle their calls in a multi-device environment, without the need for a costly Microsoft call plan.  

Louise added: “The integration means that organisations’ incoming switchboard calls can be transferred directly to employees’ Teams platforms, wherever they’re working.  It also gives our receptionists instant access to clients’ Microsoft Teams’ accounts 24/7, so they can monitor real-time status and transfer calls within the Teams platform itself.”

Efficiency Matters
The top three reasons people call businesses are because they have an urgent, complex, or sensitive matter[1]. As such, accountancy practices must be both efficient and proficient at handling queries to deliver the best customer care and caller experience.

Louise adds: “Today’s customer is used to the idea of ‘on demand’ so they expect businesses to be at their disposal when it suits them. That means all businesses must be on point with the speed and professionalism of their communication channels.    

“As we monitor the status of the team member in the Teams application, we only transfer calls when that individual is free. It means a much more efficient experience all round – we’re not interrupting people when they’re busy in a Teams meeting, away or offline, and we’re able to give callers a better experience by knowing when we need to take a message. It’s all about seamless call transfers to satisfy this growing need for immediacy.”
[1] Moneypenny’s Global Customer Call Trends Report, 2022.

Connectivity and accessibility
Faced with the threat of recession and the rising cost of living, accountancy practices can expect to be busy in the months ahead as they support clients, steer their own businesses through difficult waters and crucially, work hard to maintain a new business pipeline.

Louise said: “Outsourced telephone answering and live chat help firms to ensure they’re offering high quality experiences for clients and prospects, while also freeing up in-house resource to focus on more profitable activities. These services help with business efficiency, client retention and client acquisition and are especially helpful in a challenging market.  They make businesses accessible, give clients the most professional and efficient experience, save in-house teams from the disruption of ringing phones and capture and direct new business leads efficiently.”

Moneypenny has always been focused on combining extraordinary people and ground-breaking technology and the Teams integration is the latest example.  Louise concluded: “Above all, we want to help businesses stay connected with their clients, offer the best customer care, future-proof themselves with technology and be equipped for success.”

Moneypenny provides call and live chat solutions to hundreds of accountancy practices and is trusted by the UK’s top accounting firms, including eight of the Top 20.  

Established in 2000, Moneypenny is the world's market leader for Telephone Answering, Live Chat, Outsourced Switchboard, and customer contact solutions. More than 21,000 businesses globally benefit from Moneypenny’s mix of extraordinary people and ground-breaking technology.  

For more information about how Moneypenny supports the accountancy sector, visit

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