Our Vision for a Different Kind of CPA Firm
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It is very important to us that we add value to our clients. Besides helping our clients with their accounting and taxes, we should also actually be helping them either to grow their business, increase their profitability, or both simultaneously. We strongly believe that a good CPA firm should partner with their clients, helping them by leveraging off of the large breadth of exposure we possess due to serving a vast variety of clients. Please don’t get us wrong – we would never try to claim that we know our clients’ businesses better than our clients do – it is their businesses after all. However, we can and should be offering our clients a sort of springboard that allows our clients to leverage off both the best (and equally importantly, the worst) practices that we have seen over the years from all the other businesses we have worked with. As our clients’ CPA, we should also help them refine their business plans, help create financial goals and strategies, hold them accountable, and ultimately help them achieve success.
While the majority of our current service encompasses routine tax and accounting services, our vision is to fulfill a much greater role as our clients’ partner. Of course it is important that we help our clients initially by ensuring that their accounting and bookkeeping are current and accurate. We also need to make sure they are in compliance with all of their tax requirements, while adding significant value by making certain that they aren’t paying more taxes than they owe. These services will always be a CPA firm’s foundation. However, we genuinely want to earn our clients’ trust so that, over time, we can serve them as a valuable resource – partnering with them to help them achieve all of their goals and potential. We are not asking our clients and prospective clients to change the traditional business relationship with us as their CPA and hire us as a consulting firm. Rather, we are asking them to allow us to authentically become the real and valuable CPAs that we envision a CPA/ client relationship should be.
Now in all honesty, in my nearly 17 years in public accounting, every firm I have been part of has claimed to be able to offer this, yet rarely have I seen it actually occur. I also fully confess that over the first year that I have owned our newly merged firm, we haven’t even come close to offering this quality or type of service to our clients due to rebuilding our firm and nearly reinventing our entire service model. But, we have a vision, and are investing in our firm in a way that is truly outside-of-the-box compared to traditional CPA firm. Our plan includes multiple steps, and will likely take another 12-18 months to fully achieve, yet we are certain that the results of our efforts will already begin to provide very noticeable fruit to both our clients and our firm beginning with this upcoming tax season.
To start with, we currently have a solid infrastructure of highly qualified accountants that, instead of passing off their clients’ books to a “tax department” at the end of the year, also have the expertise to do the initial tax preparation for our clients. In this innovative model of full-circle service, our accountants will be involved with all aspects of the services their clients are receiving. Instead of a traditional firm model where specialists perform each different line of service for their clients, we will have a single accountant serve as the main contact and service provider for our clients. They will be richly supported with specialists in the other areas of service such as tax and business consulting so that these accountants, who know our clients the best, can leverage off of the expertise within our firm to serve our clients with pooled talent and expertise. Additionally, this model also offers an advantage for specialists, like myself, to be able to leverage off of the accountants’ full-circle knowledge and retrieve the big-picture of our clients’ businesses and circumstances in order to determine what is the best and most valuable advice for our client. In a traditional CPA firm model, client work is handed off frequently to different staff, and rarely does one person ever get to see the entire picture. As a result, when the client deliverables make it to the desk of the specialists or the partners who have the greatest depth of knowledge, those CPAs are only able to rely on piecemeal data provided by multiple staff of different “departments” as they attempt to offer the best counsel to their clients. Our envisioned model offers the manager or myself with the full picture of all of the pertinent data, relayed by our clients’ accountants, to determine the final service that our clients will receive.
Secondly, I have never been at a firm that had excess capacity to serve their clients. In fact, there is an extremely high accountant turnover in most accounting firms because the accountants are simply over worked. The clients are being served by overwhelmed, sleep-deprived accountants that can barely keep their eyes open, much less offer partners or senior management the entirety of their clients’ respective positions, history, and relevant data. It continues to be the paradigm for the entire CPA profession to only hire enough staff to serve the clients that they currently have until they have grown enough client revenue to justify another accountant. My opinion is that this is one of the greatest causes for high accountant turnover and less-than-stellar client service. However, our firm is entering into this upcoming tax season with at least 30% extra capacity… meaning that our staff can increase their work load by at least 30% before they are working the maximum number of hours that they desire. This will lead to improved client service due to more staff operating at a higher efficiency. We believe that this model will offer higher quality service to our clients than our competition, with the added bonus of a much lower anticipated turnover rate of the staff.
Thirdly, we do not subscribe to the model that our staff must be glued to their desks, day in and day out, to serve their clients. The majority of our staff set their own hours, and we have implemented the technology needed for them to work as efficiently at home as in the office. This allows our staff to work when and where they are the most efficient. Our only requirements from all of our staff is that they keep the firm’s commitments to our clients and get the work done accurately and timely. We are convinced that happy and content accountants provide the best service possible to our clients. This model also has the benefit of being able to attract the best talent to our firm.
The above three systems make up the initial implementation that we have already put into place in order to achieve our vision of becoming the different kind of CPA firm that we believe will transform our current and new clients’ understanding of the quality of service that a CPA firm can deliver. The next steps of achieving our vision will gradually be implemented between now and the end of this tax season, so that we can begin offering all of our clients additional more comprehensive services that most clients have never received, much less considered receiving from their CPAs – services that help them use their financial data to grow their companies, decrease costs, increase cash flow, and ultimately increase profitability. The entire team at Pine & Company CPAs PLLC are incredibly excited at what the future holds for our clients and are truly looking forward to earning our current and future clients’ trust as a different kind of CPA firm – one that our clients will consider their partners in reaching their potential and achieving the success that they desire.
One additional and very integral component to the formula of achieving our vision is our firm’s Vision and Values Statement. We believe by sticking to this foundation, we will certainly achieve our goal of becoming the truly unique CPA firm that is described above.
Pine & Company CPAs, PLLC Vision and Values Statement
Our Company Vision
To offer unsurpassed accounting and tax services to all of our clients; earning their trust as we become their partners, not just their CPA’s, by simplifying their accounting, financial and tax needs while helping them grow and manage their businesses.
Our Company Values
Faith: Serving Christ by serving others as He directs our path.
Integrity: Being people of our word and treating others as we would have them treat us while fulfilling our promises to our families, teammates, clients, and associates. Striving for perfection, owning up to mistakes and doing everything in our power to make rectify them.
Professionalism: Commitment to excellence in all of our engagements, including the conduct and attitudes in which we perform the services that we provide to our clients.
Passion: Fulfilling the plan that God has for us in a culture of enthusiasm, respect, dedication and fun.