VoIP can provide significant advantages to accounting firms in various aspects of their operations, including tax season, end-of-month billing, and day-to-day activities. This technology can support their competitive edge both presently and in the future, and there are five key ways it can help.
Total Mobility for Accounting Firms
Voice over Internet Protocol or VoIP phone systems can benefit accounting firms by providing mobility, leading to increased productivity, efficiency, and client service.
Employees have the ability to make and receive calls using an app on their smartphones. Outgoing calls made through the app display the accounting firm’s name/number on the Caller ID instead of the employee’s personal information. This not only ensures privacy but also presents a professional appearance.
Time-Saving Business Benefits
67% of accountants feel that the profession is more competitive than ever, according to a recent survey — with no letup in sight. When client expectations and standards are not met, there can be a negative impact on costs due to customer turnover.
VoIP offers a variety of features, such as auto attendant, call forwarding, email-to-text, live call transfer, text messaging, video conferencing, and integration with CRM, that can assist accounting firms in attracting and retaining profitable clients. These features are beneficial as they enhance productivity and save time.
VoIP’s time-of-day routing feature offers accounting firms the ability to direct calls to specific phones or employees during business hours using a distinctive call pattern. They can also customize greetings and route calls to a virtual call center or priority voicemail box after hours. This feature can also be utilized for holiday closures.
The end result is that clients will spend more time getting the answers, advice, and support they need, and less time on hold or leaving voicemails.
Reach More Customers with Cloud Based Phones
Accounting firms that want to reach customers outside their local area can find their area code is a barrier to market penetration. For example, a firm based in Greensboro, NC (area code 336) might face resistance from potential clients in Raleigh, NC (area code 919).
However, thanks to VoIP phone systems an accounting firm can easily and inexpensively get (in this example) a phone number with a 919 area code, which instantly puts them on the map for local clients. It is also possible to get toll-free or vanity numbers (e.g. 1-888-TAXHELP).
What’s more, if an accounting firm physically expands into their local and/or new markets, they do not need to pay costly MAC (“move, add, change”) fees. Instead, they simply unplug their phone from their old location(s), and plug them into their new locations(s).
Saving Money – The Bottom Line
Nobody needs to remind accounting firms of the importance of “doing more with less.” Voice over Internet Protocol is significantly more cost-effective than a traditional phone system like on-site (PBX).
There are minimal upfront costs, and ongoing subscription costs are based on actual users (called “seats”). If an accounting firm expands its roster with full-time or temporary/seasonal help (which is very relevant around tax time), adding users is fast, easy, and affordable. What’s more, domestic long-distance calls are always free.
If you hire seasonal workers, a VoIP solution allows you the flexibility of having those temporary employees work remotely. All they need is a good internet connection. Most VoIP providers like Carolina Digital Phone will give you access via your mobile phone or a virtual phone on your laptop or desktop computer. There is no need to make space for them in the office since they can work remotely.
Safe and Reliable Cloud-Based Phones
Finally, no discussion of the key ways that VoIP can help accounting firms would be complete without highlighting two top priorities: security and reliability.
With respect to security (which also includes privacy), leading VoIP phone systems run on private and highly secure LAN data networks, which are safeguarded by end-to-end encryption mechanisms (Transport Layer Security/TLS, Secure RTP for transmitting media, robust password protection for managed routers, and secure web-based dashboard access). This high level of security is fortified by 24/7 monitoring, and a comprehensive Telecommunications Fraud Management System that conforms to STIR/SHAKEN standards.
With respect to reliability, leading VoIP phone systems are “over-engineered” to support high traffic demands and maintain a 99.99% uptime standard. They also leverage a geographic cloud infrastructure to automatically reroute traffic in the event of a local power outage — which is a level of reliability that far surpasses conventional landline phone systems. Top this off with local service provided by experienced telecommunication specialists, and you have a recipe for world-class reliability.
These five ways that Voice over Internet Protocol can help accounting firms combine to improve productivity, efficiency, and client satisfaction, while at the same time reducing costs. In the accounting world, this makes VoIP a “high gross profit margin” investment. Outside the accounting world, getting VoIP is referred to a little differently: IT’S A NO BRAINER!
Contact Carolina Digital Phone today and schedule your free live guided demo of our all-in-one VoIP phone system. We can visit your accounting firm, or connect with you over the web. Call us now at (336) 544-4000.