Accountants are facing many challenges when it comes to client data management. The client portal software is a digital platform that allows accountants and their clients to exchange files, which makes the process much more efficient for both parties.
Clients of accountants have diverse backgrounds; some clients' institutional clientele has a great knack for technology while other conservative and aversion to using technology exists as well. The main challenge is how client data management can be handled by the accountants in light of these developments.
The client portal software offers an easy way to upload and access client financial information without having any additional literacy on dealing with updated technology.
In short, client portals offer accountants the opportunity to be client-centric, client-driven organizations. This is a necessity that must be met to maintain client trust and cliental in the future.
One of the main obstacles that accountants are facing is to collect client data now and then.
The client portal software allows both parties, client and accountant, to easily upload files without having any additional literacy on dealing with updated technology.
This process makes it more efficient for both parties because they don’t have to wait for client data on paper and can access it at any time.
Why do accountants require a client portal to receive files?
Enormous benefits offered by client portal makes it articulate why accountants should prefer a secure client platform over collecting paper documents or getting the client’s document through email.
Followings are some reasons that contribute to making up the minds of accountant in settling with client portal as their media of communication with their customers:
- As an accountant, client data is sensitive and the client portal will guarantee that it remains confidential
- The client portal also offers an easy way to upload a document for various purposes that might incur additional costs
- Client portals are eco-friendly because they eliminate paper usage. This move encourages deforestation which helps in maintaining ecological balance
- As you can see there's plenty of benefits to client portals for accountants, and the client portal software is an easy way that allows you to collect client data from anywhere.
- Your clients may require sending files of a large size at a time. Client portal software for accountants offers the service of sending or receiving large files.
- You may want a platform through which you can provide customized and more secured services. The client portal will allow you to customize your brand and redesign the platform at ease for your clients.
- Neither you nor your client are supposed to have expert knowledge on the use of superior technologies.
- Client portal software will solve your client's knowledge gap by making the entire file transferring process understandable and easier.
How can an accountant collect files from their clientele?
Providing accounting services has been a significant source of outsourcing and added values for both the accountants and business enterprises. For outsourcing accounting services, online communication technologies are a must.
While the question of exchanging information and receiving files from clientele comes, accountants are observed to use some common platforms frequently.
Most of the clients prefer sending e-mails to their accountants as it seems to be the easiest alternative from their part. Dropbox is another option for them.
Clients can upload their files in their Dropbox or Google Drive and share the particular link with their accountants.
None of these platforms is free from constraints that make accounting firms unstable in using an online portal for communicating their customers.
For instance, you can look at the loopholes of e-mail that is considered to be one of the most professional forms of communication media.
Research on 700,000 mail servers discovered cyber-attack for 20% messages and e-mails of accounting firms lie on the top priority list of cyber hackers.
Besides, you will receive hundreds of emails from your hundreds client every day which consume valuable time to arrange files in an appropriate order.
That’s why it is highly recommended that accountants should not use e-mail for collecting client data.
What to look for in a Client Portal Software for Accountants?
The client portal software for accountants should be able to collect documents from the clients irrespective of their time differences and location differences among themselves.
However, accountants deserve more specific reasons that make client portal software better than other available alternatives.
1. Customization at its best
The client portal should offer you a more customized service. You can design your portal with your company logo, colors, visions, structure and whatnot. It will make the file-sharing platform more professional, engaging and reliable to the clientele.
2. An easier and simpler platform for your clients
Your client need not create any user ID or worry about registration. They just have to enter the portal and upload their files. It doesn’t matter what the file types are, client can send them without any complications or complexities at all.
3. Automatic Synchronization
Files uploaded by clients in an accountant client portal can be in different forms. The client portal can transform these files into Microsoft excel, CSV, PDF or what not.
However, the process of transferring is a time-consuming one that demands great efforts from accountants. It should be automatic and straightforward to upload client’s data with client portal.
The client portal should provides an automatic synchronization service that eliminates the need for accountants to spend time on arranging client’s files in their client portals manually.
The software automatically transfers any file uploaded by a client into the desired location of the accountant without requiring manual intervention from them.
4. Integration with your organization's internal control system
Integration with your organization’s internal control system ensures client portal software for accountants is more reliable and trustworthy. Undoubtedly as an accountant, you may have your customized accounting and other software.
The client portals should be able to integrate with the current workflow through web hook by Zapier without any hassles, difficulties or complexities at all.
5. Removing Client's sensitive information from e-mail
The client portal software should not require your company’s e-mail or the client's email because it might put all of you at risk.
Data storage purpose can be done through Google Drive, OneDrive, SharePoint or Dropbox where uploaded files will automatically get stored there.
Besides, accountants should make use of client portals for collecting client data and client files.
Data collected from client can be either manually transferred by accountants or automatically uploaded in an unstructured manner where the client portal software will do that for them with ease.
The client portal will not access accountants’ accounts without their permission. As a result, unlike other client portals, accountants have valid grounds to feel more secured regarding their privacy.
The Software deletes these files from the client portal within one month upon receipt of your request and then assigns them with an expiration date for download link which you can share with clientele.
As files uploaded by clients are automatically saved in accountants’ desired location, the client portal contributes to ensuring accountant security by making the link invalid after one week from when client sends it.
Accountants often send download links of these files to other parties for business purpose and use them as well for backup. The Client Portal contributes to ensuring accountants’ security by making the link invalid after one week from when client sends it.
Besides at the request of the accountant, client portal software better than other available alternatives can be customized according to your company needs and this makes them more reliable and trustworthy for both clients as well as accountants.
7. Value-based pricing
The client portal software has developed its pricing model based on the value its offering is going to add in the business of accountants. It has determined different pricing for different sets of services.
Pricing mainly differs in the number of transfers an accountant will face for their clients in a month and the data storage limit. It makes their pricing mechanism fair for the accountants.
Also compared to other means, Client portal software intends to offer services at a more reasonable value.
What risks might accountants experience for not using a secured client portal?
Accountants’ decisions regarding how clients’ information will be shared and how they will impart in online communication are responsible for the consequences and security related issues they face later. If an accountant client portal is not used, the following risks might generate for them.
- Security of client’s data and information is at risk.
- Accountants may face difficulties in arranging files according to their importance.
- Inability to have a platform that can offer customized services without any hassles for clientele might be an issue. If you are planning on out-outsourcing accounting services, then the client portal software will always be a reliable choice for you.
Client Portal Software will solve all your problems by making the client data transferring process easy and understandable.
So, it is time for you to move into the digital future by adopting client portal software as your business model.