Sometimes the reason for your firm getting the boot is pretty obvious and other times it isn’t. Fortunately for you, Tom Hood over at CPA Success lists the top seven reasons that your clients drop you like a sack of rocks and it sounds like the “It’s not you, it’s me” routine:
1. My accountant (CPA) doesn’t treat me right (two-thirds of the responses).
2. CPAs ignore their clients.
3. CPAs fail to cooperate.
4. CPAs let partner contact lapse.
5. CPAs do not keep clients informed.
6. CPAs assume clients are technicians.
7. CPAs use clients as training ground for new staff.
#1 seems a little vague (feel free to elaborate) to us but we’ve definitely seen 2 – 7 in action. We’d go so far to say that #4 and #7 are a little low on the list but that’s just our $0.02. Smaller clients, especially, want just a tiny bit of partner love every once in a while — lunch, bagels, anything! — but sometimes they’re lucky if they get a Christmas card.
Plus there are some clients that hate nothing more than an engagement team that turns over year after year. There’s nothing more annoying than answering the same questions every year by a different 22 year old accountant.
If you’ve got thoughts on, or additions to, the list drop them in the comments and discuss your client dissatisfaction experiences.
• H.R. 4173, Summary of Accounting and Audit Related Provisions – Lots to digest here but it’s all important, including a possible GASP name change for the PCAOB. [FEI Financial Reporting Blog]
• Invitation to a Conversation: If the Auditors Were Missing from the Financial Crisis — Let’s Ask Why – Jim Peterson doesn’t mince words: “The simple if depressing reason is that their core product has long since been judged irrelevant. The standard auditor’s report is an anachronism — having lost any value it may once have had, except for legally-required compliance.” [Re: Balance/Jim Peterson]
• Accenture Makes Right Decision, Drops Tiger Sponsorship – The awkward inappropriateness of the whole situation is now hitting T. Dubs in the wallet, as Accenture jumps into the “your services are no longer needed” camp. He won’t starve. [The Big Four Blog]
• Open Letter to the Securities and Exchange Commission (Part 5): Issuer Retaliation Complaint Against Overstock.com – Patrick Byrne’s attempt to develop his own Richard Nixon-esque enemies list has been met with fierce resistance. [Sam Antar/White Collar Fraud]
• CPA firms face pricing pinch – “After years of gains since the government started keeping track in December 2003, overall prices for CPA firm services plummeted with the onset of recession in December 2007.” [CPA Trendlines]
• Citigroup to Repay $20 Billion of Government Bailout – $25 bil to go. Get on it. [Bloomberg]
Recruitment is still going on in many parts of the country and soon little grasshopper accountants will have to make a decision on where their career will start. Their decisions will be based on many factors, including but not exclusive to:
• The obvious
• The people they meet
• Perceived prestige of the firm (or lack thereof)
• Work/life balance
Web CPA has a piece from last week written by an HR service professional that makes the point the better benefits will yield better employees for a firm.
Okay, maybe. As important as benefits packages are, most firms offer competitive packages that won’t serve as a deal-breaker. That still doesn’t stop some partners from boasting about standard options that most companies already have, however.
While we’re not crazy about the idea that benefits serve as the major selling point for employers, it does bring up the interesting question of how you were originally sold on your current (or former) firm?
Regardless of how you feel about your employer now, you were probably excited to start working for said company at some point. If you’ve hated your employer since day one then you seriously need to consider talking to someone. No one put a gun to your head to take the job so what was it that convinced you?
Maybe it was the firm with the coolest schwag? Maybe you were getting the extra-special hustle from a partner. Or maybe you just took what you could get.
Whatever your reasons for jumping on board, discuss them in the comments in order to give the recruits out there some guidance with some non-firm responses. Recruits if you’ve already made a choice, discuss who and why. For the rest of you, if you knew then what you know now, would you make the same choice? Some recruits are still getting the pitch now so let’s give them the straight shit. They’re going to be working for you, after all.