The Beyond Bookkeeping Story
“Why didn’t I do this sooner?” is something we hear all the time from firms that have transitioned from desktop applications and paper-based processes – into the world of cloud bookkeeping. If you’ve ever muttered those words don’t be too hard on yourself, it’s difficult to believe that the grass is actually greener until you’ve jumped to the other side. And if you’ve yet to make the shift, that’s ok too! Moving to the cloud can be intimidating, especially when you don’t know where to start.
That’s why we teamed up with Beyond Bookkeeping, Intuit Firm of The Future and Hubdoc Top 50 Cloud Accountant, to tell you their story.
Beyond Bookkeeping Origin Story
Cindy Henderson Magner wanted to make a positive impact on her community. She attempted to build a company that would help individuals start and grow small businesses of their own. But through her research, she quickly realized that most small businesses fail because they lack the ability to control their finances or to interpret financial statements. And so her mission evolved. Cindy decided to start Beyond Bookkeeping (BBK), an accounting and bookkeeping firm that would help small businesses succeed by demystifying the complexities of their finances.
Today, BBK is a virtual firm with 8 employees. It services organizations of all shapes and sizes. They are 100% in the cloud, which has helped them scale their business and attract high value clients. But like most firms, transitioning from traditional desktop applications to the cloud wasn’t easy.
The old way of doing things
There’s a reason they say hindsight is 20/20. When you’re so used to doing something everyday it’s hard to notice that it isn’t working.
From 2005 to 2015, BBK had solidified their workflow.
They were using a combination of email, cloud storage and a remote server to collect their clients receipts, bills, invoices and other financial documents. Most of their clients would even give them access to their online banking for statements, check images and e-transfers.
Once the document collection stage of the workflow was complete, they would sort each document by type and supplier, manually enter the data into their systems, process payments, write out checks and finally, reconcile the books using QuickBooks Desktop.
Although their workflow seemed solid, it had its issues. For one, they thought clients would send paper bills and receipts digitally. But because they regularly forgot, BBK had to arrange courier pick ups. Once they added paper-based processes to the mix, their expected workflow was hardly their reality.
“We were spending so much time trying to collect client documents. We would ask for view-only access to bank and credit card websites, but for one reason or another some of our clients couldn't get us our own logins, so we would have to use theirs. That put us at increased liability, which I was never really comfortable with. This is really hilarious to me now, but we used to have my admin go out and do packet swaps with clients on Mondays. We would ask for bank statements, receipts, credit card statements, bills that needed to be paid, checks. We got to the point where it was no longer manageable. It’s especially funny now considering Hubdoc automatically fetches all of those documents for us.”
The new way of doing things - increased efficiency & profitability
We asked Cindy what changed her mind about cloud bookkeeping.
“My big a-ha moment was in March 2015. I started using cloud bookkeeping software with one of my clients, and a member of the Hubdoc team reached out and invited me to a demo. They showed me how Hubdoc automatically fetched bank statements, check images, receipts, and how it integrated with my cloud bookkeeping software. They showed me how to attach source documents to transactions in QBO and Xero, and it was so easy, not to mention in real time. That was my a-ha moment. That’s when I realized how much time I could save by adopting the cloud.”
And so BBK started their journey to the cloud. They quickly experienced the benefits that came with it…
But how!? Together with Beyond Bookkeeping, we wrote the playbook for moving to the cloud. In it, we discuss:
Workflows and Technology
Employee Change Management
Hourly to Fixed Fee Pricing