In order to grow your firm, you need to make the switch from working for your business to working on it. There’s no doubt about it, it’s a difficult transition for most of our clients. But, if you can’t make that change, you won’t be able to reach your growth goals. Thankfully, there are plenty of tools to help you make the transition from doer to director. And Trello, just happens to be one of our favorites.
Accounting Practice Management Software vs. Workflow Software
Before we get into the ins and outs of Trello, let’s first discuss how not to use it. Trello is not meant to be a workflow management tool. It is a team management tool. Instead of using Trello to keep track of a personal to-do lists or client deliverables, we suggest using it for internal communication. More often than not, when a client comes to us saying that they tried Trello before without success, it’s because they were using it for client communication and projects. We’ll have a list of our favorite workflow softwares for you shortly, but Trello is our top pick for a team management software.
The Best Accounting Practice Management Software
Now that we’ve discussed the best way to use Trello, let’s talk about how to actually use it to take back your time and organize your team. Because when you can successfully implement a valuable accounting practice management software, you can begin the transition from doer to director. And, that’s one of the most important steps to building your dream accounting firm.
The Anatomy of Trello
Imagine a wall of Post-it notes, with to-do items for your team, broken down into different stages of completion. Now, consider your Trello board a virtual wall. At DreamFirms, we organize our boards by the type of task i.e. Graphic Design, SEO, Video etc. Your boards will look different than ours. And unlike a wall, Trello boards allow you to selectively invite certain team members. This ensures that your team members are focused on their specific tasks only.
Modeled after Toyota’s ultra- productive project management system, Trello allows the user to separate the different stages of planning into “lists.” Here you can distinctively separate the planning, to-do, to review, and to deploy “lists” for your team members. This allows you, the owner to see what stage each task is at, at a high level.
You can label your lists however you would like, but we suggest following this general idea of different stages of planning & execution. Watch the video above for a detailed look at how we organize our lists.
Cards are the individual tasks on a list. If you’re feeling overwhelmed, don’t worry. You can follow along (and get a sneak peek at one of DreamFirms Trello boards) in the video above. Trello cards are the place where this accounting practice management software really shines.
Each Trello card holds all the required documents, photos, lists, requests etc. for a certain project. You can also add checklists to cards to explicitly spell out how you want something done. And, you can link to other Trello cards that might be related to the current one you’re team is working on. Everything your team needs to complete a project can and should be housed on that project’s Trello card.
Why Use An Accounting Practice Management Software?
One of the most common problems we hear when asking our clients about obstacles building their dream accounting firms is lack of time.
“I just don’t have enough time. I am too busy.”
We’ve said it before, and we’ll say it again– time is your most valuable resource. You need to do everything you can to protect it. Using an accounting practice management software like Trello will accomplish just that. You would be shocked at how much time you can save by simply having everything clearly spelled out for yourself and your team members.
You want to check the status of a specific client’s tax return? No need to track down your employees and interrupt their work, you can just pop into Trello and see exactly how far along it is. Do you need to make sure that you’ve signed off on everything required of you at the end of the week? Don’t waste time going team member to team member, just check your Trello boards. Taking back your time is essential to build your dream accounting firm, and this is a productive first step.