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Lost my first client - Highest fee income

Lost my first client - Highest fee income

My practice was really on the up - till I received a voice mail late today from one of my key client - They are leaving me.

This is a substantial fee client. 25% of my fee income is from this client. Reason why they are leaving from the voice mail - fee savings.

This is my first client loss since I started. The client will call again on Monday. I hope to get further feedback.

I just did not think this client would leave me. It did not occur to me. In terms of probability of the client leaving I would have put it to 3% to 5%.

I hope to learn from the feedback. It will be tough to make up that income.

Anyone else been in a similar situation losing  a key client? Tough one!

Replies

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By occca
18th Aug 2011 19:43

Are they definitely leaving?

Maybe there is room to negotiate your fees with them on Monday - though you don't want to lose money on the job

25% is a huge amount for an accountancy practice to get from one client - this leaves you very exposed

 

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18th Aug 2011 19:54

Yes definitely leaving

The voice mail was clear on the point that they had made up their mind. May be they are other reasons in addition to the fees. I will try and find out.

 

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18th Aug 2011 20:00

Pricing

My biggest clients are only about 5% of my fee income. For this I usually have to do some regular management accounts. Most of my clients are around £250 - £2,000 so the 5% ones are way off the scale with the amount of income and my time.

I don't know about the client you are talking about but if you have to spend a lot of time on the client look on the positive side and think of the time you have free for new clients and getting all your other work up to date. If you don't have to do a lot of work and your fees were excessive then it would only have been a matter of time before they realised and this is what happened. Maybe you need to consider your pricing model?

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18th Aug 2011 20:13

For what it's worth

I too have been through a dramatic reduction in fees and clients over the past few years, much of it designed but others fell off as I got tougher on what I was prepared to put up with and several gave up trying to run a business in the current climate.

It can be a shock but you learn from it and if the money is really a problem then you just find ways of cost cutting or deferral.  When I first went out on my own my mentor said the only advice he would give me was never to worry over a lost client, just learn from it and move on, there will be a silver lining, and/or a new client around the corner.

Mind you, I do also have some sympathy with a friend's outlook when he says "one door closes and another hits you in the face"

As a PS, I lost a valued client earlier this year purely on cost grounds, one of those where I had bent over backwards since helping her start her own business.  I think it's a first, but she called me last month apologising and asking to come back, basically she was getting only what she paid for and had not appreciated what we did for her (probably our fault). 

Most clients would not want to admit they were wrong but you never know so don't fall into the trap of trying to match the new fee, stay professional and leave the door open if things don't work out.

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TaxMatters
18th Aug 2011 20:50

Don't take it to heart

Most important thing is don't dwell on it.  Learn from it if they have good reason for leaving, but don't do any knee-jerking.  Just because they think you're expensive. don't automatically start cutting quotes for future new prospects.  Go back to basics, look at the competition charges, look at the services you are offering, and check your pricing.  It's just as likely to be a rogue client whingeing as it is a problem with your charges.  Don't change anything immediately.  Take a week or two leaving things exactly the same and doing what you were doing before.  Then once you've had time to properly consider, that's the time to decide whether to reduce your fees for future similar cases or whether you should steer clear of such large clients until your practice has a more diverse client base.  25% of fees from one client was never healthy in the first place and looking back, you may come to the conclusion you shouldn't have taken it on at this stage in your practice.

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18th Aug 2011 21:00

Been there...

I had a client that had been involved with my family for many years in one form or another. They represented about 5% of my fees at the time. One morning I opened the post and there it was, a clearance letter from another firm.

I was so shocked and so upset that I had to put the letter in the bottom draw over the weekend whilst I got to grips with the news.

I telephoned them on Monday and tried to be nice about it. I handed over the info quickly and tried to get on with things. I soon replaced the income.

However, to this day, if I think about it, it is still a sore subject (it happened 10 years ago?). But then, I suppose they were a bit more than just clients and woundn't have had a business at all if it hadn't been for my old Dad who had lent them the initial money - interest free - to get going.

 

Steve

 

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18th Aug 2011 21:07

Confident pricing

"25% of fees from one client was never healthy in the first place and looking back, you may come to the conclusion you shouldn't have taken it on at this stage in your practice."

Despite it being unhealthy and against a lot of professional advice it is very difficult to reject a big client if you have spare capacity.

Shirley has told us about her pricing methods which gives her a great deal of confidence in her prices. Maybe FirstTab should consider his pricing to give him confidence going forward. I agree that he shouldnt rush his decision.

 

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18th Aug 2011 22:18

Major blow

Thank you all for the response. I really appreciate the advice. The points about knee jerk reaction and letting myself cool down for a few days are important.

This will not be easy for my own motivation and my finances. I will find a way to deal with it and take action to get more clients.

 

 

 

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By Old Greying Accountant
18th Aug 2011 22:20

Agreeing with Peter ...

... quite often a practice will start ot with one client being 100% of their fees, as a practise grows organically ideally fees will balance out and never be more than 5% of the whole . I started with one that was probably around 20% of my fees, and had they gone early on I would have been in shtuck so I sympathise entirely.

I would say though that for a worthwhile client, fees are unlikely to be sole the cause of them leaving, despite what they say, so you are right to dig deeper and find out. A good relationship with a client should mean they are able to discuss fees frankly with you to give you the opportunity to re-negotiate rather than drop a voice-mail bombshell (which actually says a lot about the client to me!).  

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By StevieG
19th Aug 2011 09:13

Lost my first client

I thought we were not allowed to have one client exceeding 15% of total fee income?

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By Old Greying Accountant
Old Greying Accountant
19th Aug 2011 23:08

Sorry if it has been answered, but so many posts!

StevieG wrote:

I thought we were not allowed to have one client exceeding 15% of total fee income?

I think you will find that relates to audit clients only?

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19th Aug 2011 09:16

Best of luck

My views will only echo what the others are saying so I will not repeat them. My own practice has 2 large clients, both representing about 8% each and for me to loose both of them in the same year is unthinkable. For me possibly practice ending. Having said that this year I have lost about 10% of clients due to natural wastage (i.e. clients liquidating/ceasing trade, etc) and that 10% is a huge chunk of my practice profit. So I understand that with small practices even loosing a small client is difficult, so I really do wish you the best of luck.

Looking back over the last few weeks you have posted quite a few questions about taking on new clients. I am not wishing to be rude and I have previously never challenged you like some have, but have you looked at your current thinking and possibly that you could have offered this clients a better service for the fee? Have you concentrated on new clients too much and slightly neglected this client? I am not saying you have, but in a weeks time, not now you may consider looking at this client and you own view on service v fee. If you come to the conclusion that you have done everything you could for the client, then you can move on. If you consider that perhaps you could have done a little more (I don't mean free work), then look at other clients that you have and consider the same for them.

My view is that 9 out of 10 times there is nothing you can do for the client and like consumables they will go after the cheapest option rather than the better option. However there is always the 1 in 10 where it is not the client it is us and I am just saying think about whether this is a possible reason, I am not saying it is. I will give an example of only this week. Needed a new hedgetrimmer, so quite happy to go to B & Q and pay an extra 10% so I can have a decent look at the trimmer. I know I can get it cheaper over internet but that is why B & Q has stores. My choice. However I point blank refuse to use self service tills. B & Q were only operating self service tills that night so put the trimmer back and wife brought over internet. For me B & Q lost out, not because they were more expensive, but because they did not satisfy me on the sales service.

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19th Aug 2011 09:33

Too many eggs

First off I'm sorry that you have lost such a big client. As others have said you can learn from it.

Years ago whilst running a trading company we had a single customer that represented around 25% of our turnover, and yes we lost them to a competitor and it nearly broke us. I learned from that and even all these years later I ensure that we do not rely on a small numer of clients for the majority of our fee income. I am aware of this when quoting for work and have rejected potential clients for being too big in the past.

I have noticed that recently there is a bigger churn rate of clients I would say that we are losing about 4% per year. We are able to replace them at the moment, but that could change. We were saying in the office yesterday that clients are more likely to change accountants, banks etc today than they were in the past. We need to be more proactive these days.

Good luck with replacing that large client with several smaller ones (they can also be more profitable)

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tom123
19th Aug 2011 10:40

Percentages

A quick calculation of our client database shows that our lowest fee is 0.15% of turnover, our highest is 2.9% and the average is 0.75%.

That may or not be of interest to you! ;~)

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19th Aug 2011 09:53

Recession

For most businesses the financial crisis & general downturn in trade = shopping round for cost savings, and that means looking for the cheapest accountant.

At present clients dont want "bells & whistles",. they want the minimum neccessary for compliance at the cheapest possible rate.

 

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19th Aug 2011 09:55

I don't agree...

... with DD - in my experience clients don't just want compliance work, they feel why should they pay for something that has absolutely no value to them - it's obviously necessary work but the client doesn't see it that way - what they want is actual help running their business - if you can provide that then they will pay more.

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19th Aug 2011 10:08

Its not what they want, its what they will pay for .

They may want help running their business, but with incomes crashing for many businesses, they don't want to pay for it.

Obviously this varies from area to area, in different trades, and indeed from client to client. As a simple example I recently saw a sub-contractor who 2 years ago was earning a minimum £15/hour. Now, the same contractors are only paying £7/hour. This is due to the fall in house prices, and the influx of east european labour which has driven proces down in some trades.

Where businesses are struggling it has always been the case that accountancy fees is one of the areas they look at. A false economy, probably, but nevertheless it happens.

I suspect that any accountant thinking he is somehow immune from this, will get a nasty shock over the next couple of years.

 

 

 

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19th Aug 2011 10:14

... surely if you can put money in their account, they'll pay...

I think if you gave a client a choice of paying a cheap accountant to purely do their compliance work or paying a bit more but them actually benefitting financially from the service, I know which one they'd choose - that's how it's been in my experience anyway...

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19th Aug 2011 10:23

You cant help them all

Agreed - but how does someone "benefit financially" from anything an accountant can do if he is now being paid an hourly rate half what he used to be, or, as in the case of pubs, if people simply don't have the money to use his pub any more.

I think the sad truth is that whilst there are some clients you can perhaps help, there are an awful lot where there simply is no way around the effects of the recession.

 

 

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19th Aug 2011 10:26

... lots of ways to help!

I think we can help clients in lots of ways - in fact that are certain ways that, the lower the earnings of the client, the more the accountant can help - again, that's just in my experience...

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19th Aug 2011 10:27

no right answer

Accountancy market is over populated and just like every sector will continue to over populate. Too many practices/accountants trying to service too few clients. Basic supply and demand economics.

I'm just highlighting that it may be a good opportunity to look at service levels of this client and compare to existing client base to see if there is anything that could be improved to keep the 75% he has.

 

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19th Aug 2011 11:33

agree with the duck

it's a harsh climate out there at the moment. many of my clients are struggling, and in many cases I have reduced their fees, without waiting for them to ask me. I can see their accounts and how much they are earning, so I do what i can to reduce the burden.

Getting back to the query posted by first tab, I am sure that most people have been in your situation. It is difficult when you are starting out, and every client represents a major part of your business.

I would say this though, that over the next 2 - 3 years things will settle down, and each client should only represent 0.25% to 2% (or less) of your business. This is the norm for most accountancy practices.

As pointed out by the OGA above, If their reasons for leaving were purely based on fees, then they would have given you the opportunity to renegotiate. This indicates that there is some other reason they are leaving. Have you let them down recently without realising it at the time?

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19th Aug 2011 10:51

FWIW

My experience is that once a client has decided to leave it is not a good idea to persuade them to stay.

Wish them well for the future, do all that you can to make the handover easy and emphasise that they can always contact you in the future if they wish to. As others have said, if they find that the new accountant's service is not what they were expecting, they may well return.

Always bear in mind that clients often value a good service above cheap fees and those that just want the cheapest fee are usually trouble.

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19th Aug 2011 10:54

I'm with Daffy Duck. I am of the opinion that unless you have a very specialised set of clients then you can't help most of them to make money or at least make it obvious enough for them to pay you for your efforts.

I had a client come to me yesterday. He said that it was difficult for him to find the time completing the spreadsheets so I could prepare his accounts. He asked me if I could do it for him.I told him that I could but I would need to have all the information from him anyway and I wondered whether he would have time to get the information together. I suggested that it would be better if he sent me csv files of his bank and credit card statements and he sent me pdfs of his statements with the invoice numbers against his bank receipts and type of expense and vat amount against the payments/charges. He would still need to send me a sales invoice spreadsheet.

I could have charged him more but I would have had to make sure he provided the information and it could be a lot of messing about. My suggestion seems to be best for my client.

 

 

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zxcvb
19th Aug 2011 11:05

Actually..........

petersaxton wrote:

he sent me pdfs of his statements with the invoice numbers against his bank receipts and type of expense and vat amount against the payments/charges. He would still need to send me a sales invoice spreadsheet.

 

That is how I do the accounts for a lot of my smaller clients and it works really well. I just enter the bank statements into VT, adjust for sales debtors etc and Bob's yer uncle.

Funnily enough many clients seem to actually like being asked to do it this way - I suppose it makes them feel involved!

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Castroggi
19th Aug 2011 11:19

Only thing is what about cash?

nigelburge wrote:

petersaxton wrote:

he sent me pdfs of his statements with the invoice numbers against his bank receipts and type of expense and vat amount against the payments/charges. He would still need to send me a sales invoice spreadsheet.

 

That is how I do the accounts for a lot of my smaller clients and it works really well. I just enter the bank statements into VT, adjust for sales debtors etc and Bob's yer uncle.

Funnily enough many clients seem to actually like being asked to do it this way - I suppose it makes them feel involved!

 

THis is one of the (many!) ways I have tried doing jobs with no cashbook, but isn't the potential problem missing loads of cash transactions ?

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andy.partridge
19th Aug 2011 11:28

Expenses paid personally

Sorry, I'd still need a list of expenses paid personally.

This client says he doesn't receive cash.

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andy.partridge
19th Aug 2011 11:43

Cash Transactions

zarathustra wrote:

THis is one of the (many!) ways I have tried doing jobs with no cashbook, but isn't the potential problem missing loads of cash transactions ?

Yes. The client has to provide a list of cash and personally paid expenses together with receipts but that is not difficult even if I only get the cash receipts!

As to cash receipts, one of the first things I drum into a new client is that if they receive cash sales, it must always be banked in full with absolutely no exceptions whatsoever. If they breach this golden rule - they are in trouble. The reason for this is that if it ever comes to it, they can tell (or swear if necessary) at the Tribunal that ALL cash sales are banked, which cuts HMRC's feet from under them. Unless of course the Tribunal think the client is lying!!

It all comes down to educating clients to keep the best records that they are able to.

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BreeW33
19th Aug 2011 11:56

Scared of Excel

One thing I do with new clients is see how comfortable they are with Excel. If they are comfortable then it makes my job easier and reduces their fees.

As soon as they give an indication they are not comfortable with Excel then I suggest a different way. I don't try to teach somebody Excel - it wont work. I tried it with one web designer who used computers but it turned out he had put all the amounts with a "£" in front of the number and it was text. I showed him how he could do search and replace but he came up with other weird things as well. My usual solution for personal expenses in a non-Excel environment is to suggest they keep an envelope for each major type of expense and total the vouchers and write it on the envelope. If they have a miscellaneous envelope I can deal with that.

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Richard Hattersley
19th Aug 2011 12:03

Peter - how would you relate the totals on the envelopes to bank

petersaxton wrote:

One thing I do with new clients is see how comfortable they are with Excel. If they are comfortable then it makes my job easier and reduces their fees.

As soon as they give an indication they are not comfortable with Excel then I suggest a different way. I don't try to teach somebody Excel - it wont work. I tried it with one web designer who used computers but it turned out he had put all the amounts with a "£" in front of the number and it was text. I showed him how he could do search and replace but he came up with other weird things as well. My usual solution for personal expenses in a non-Excel environment is to suggest they keep an envelope for each major type of expense and total the vouchers and write it on the envelope. If they have a miscellaneous envelope I can deal with that.

 

Peter - how would you relate the totals on the envelopes to the bank  statements etc ?  

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19th Aug 2011 10:56

Size doesnt matter

It's all very well saying that no one client should represent more than, say 5% of income, but lets be realistic for a minute.

You're a one man band, maybe earning £50k a year from 100 assorted small clients. Through the door walks someone willing to pay you £45k a year to do their accounts etc. and you quickly decide that you can find the time to do their work without losing your current clients. What do you?  Are you really going to turn down the chance to double your income ?  I dont think so.

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19th Aug 2011 10:59

... I agree with DD...

... for example, I had a client come to me for a complete service, was being charged around £14,000 per annum by his previous accountant, I am doing the whole lot for around £8,000 - it still represents quite a large percentage of my turnover compared to everyone else but I was never going to turn him down because of this!

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19th Aug 2011 11:11

Inefficient

It does seem that a lot of clients dont like to enter information in a spreadsheet against downloaded csv files and are more willing to do it a more inefficient way by writing on a bank statement!

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19th Aug 2011 11:21

On the original subject matter

FT: try and learn from it but don't dwell on it too long.

I also agree that fee level probably isn't the whole reason for this client's departure, so probably worth trying to identify other causes, ands eliminate them in the future.

 

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19th Aug 2011 11:39

Cheap fees or quality service

If this was 25% of your fee income, you must have been in contact with them on a regular basis and had a feeling things were going a bit sour?

 

I have two big clients and I make sure I keep in regular contact and ensure everything is ok.

 

I do ask if there are any issues and if it came to it, I would reduce my fees to keep those clients.

 

Customer service is key and you do need to pamper big clients.

 

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19th Aug 2011 12:14

personally paid expenses

I'm talking about the personally paid expenses:

"My usual solution for personal expenses in a non-Excel environment is to suggest they keep an envelope for each major type of expense and total the vouchers and write it on the envelope. If they have a miscellaneous envelope I can deal with that."

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Richard Hattersley
19th Aug 2011 13:42

In this day and age............

petersaxton wrote:

"My usual solution for personal expenses in a non-Excel environment is to suggest they keep an envelope for each major type of expense and total the vouchers and write it on the envelope. If they have a miscellaneous envelope I can deal with that."

.............of computers and such new-fangled things, it is indeed refreshing to see someone else who still keeps the "old ways" alive!!

Now, I haven't done a set of accounts by hand for donkey's years, but a lot of the old methods appurtaining to the "carrier bag job" are as valid now as they have always been.

(Now I will get back to my sloping desk and quill pen.)

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By Jimess
19th Aug 2011 13:56

Move forward

I am sorry you have lost your client and yes I have been there too. The only way is to move forward and not dwell on the loss - you need your energies to build things up again so don't waste time feeling negative about the situation.  I lost a big fee paying client to my practice about two months after I made the move from working at home to taking on an office, part-time staff etc. It was nowhere near 25% of my total fee income - probably nearer 15% but the loss was devastating and caused huge problems.  However one thing I have learned from it is that with a bit of effort and investment of time you can recoup the lost fees - it is just not very comfortable while you are working through it.  I had a really good hard look again at the area in which my office was placed, gathered a much clearer picture of the potential client base and looked for opportunities to widen my own client base to spread the risk.  In three years we have recouped the lost fees and a lot more besides and found a nice little niche in the local market to boot, but I have had to sacrifice an awful lot just to get that far and I would definitely not rest on my laurels.  Clients do come and go for various reasons and it is so much harder for smaller practices to lose fees, but it is also an opportunity to look at where your practice is going, how you work with your clients and to strengthen your client base by diversity across a range of client types and business sectors. 

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19th Aug 2011 14:29

-
 nigelburge

(Now I will get back to my sloping desk and quill pen.) 

 

 

I had one of those but the keyboard kept sliding off it - chewing gum holds it in place well though, but have you ever tried chewing gum with a beak ? .

 

 

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19th Aug 2011 14:07

Efficiency is the key

If you are going to have people getting into difficulty using Excel you have to avoid it.

I try to be "paperless" but if somebody gives me bank statement pdfs (because they dont have online banking) it's easier to print them off and track them with a ruler than try to track them on screen.

One of my bigger clients has just sent me their payroll details in Excel. I'd got them to use columns for basic salary, backdated pay, commission, profit share and unpaid leave with a gross salary this month which adds the other columns. They then have another column for season ticket adjustments. The accountant who provides all this information is qualified.

They decided to deduct pension contributions. Instead of putting these figures outside the gross salary addition area and treat it as the deduction it is he entered the pension column in the middle of the columns which get added to arrive at the gross salary. This meant they were adding the pension to the gross salary rather than not including it at all to arrive at the gross salary. To make matters even worse they also added three columns of workings to arrive at the pension contributions and included these columns in space that increased the gross salary!

A casual glance at the spreadsheet would see that it was nonsense but some people stop thinking when they use Excel.

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Sciah1984
19th Aug 2011 14:16

Sage..................

petersaxton wrote:

some people stop thinking when they use Excel.

Most people stop thinking when they use Sage.

I have learnt to dread the new client who informs me very proudly that I will have very little work to do 'cos his books are all correct on Sage. I just know that nothing will agree, he will have no idea what he has done or why and worst of all, why I need things to actually reconcile!

In the past, I have even resorted to going right back to the bank statements when it was truly FUBAR. Arrrgghhh!!!!

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Sciah1984
19th Aug 2011 14:29

Sage

I had a client who used spreadsheets and he wanted to use an accounts package. I recommended QuickBooks but his step father recommended Sage. Next thing I knew he sent me a total mess of a Sage data file and I told him what was wrong and how to correct it but never heard from him until just before the accounts were due. This is despite me chasing him and offering to meet and go through things. He came to me and said he'd pay anything to get the accounts in . He said he realised it was a mess.

I corrected everything and charged him about twice what I would have charged if the data had been correct. He wasn't happy. His excuse was that he didn't know how to make the corrections and didn't know how to use Sage properly. I gave him a big list of what I'd done to try to help him and how he hadn't helped himself. I asked him what he wanted to pay me. He didn't say but a few weeks later he paid my bill in full but he went to another accountant. Next I heard the company was in liquidation. He got a job. Then he started in self employment and came back to me. He then got me to form a limited company. Now he has me do everything for him and is as good as gold. He even got my wife (who is a small minicab operator) to take him and his family on holiday!

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Sciah1984
19th Aug 2011 14:37

FUBAR

.

[/quote]

truly FUBAR. Arrrgghhh!!!!

[/quote]

 

Theres one I have not heard for a bit!

 

Or even SNAFU.

 

Do I deduce from this an the gentlrman wearing 16th Century military atire that you have a services background?

 

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edhy
19th Aug 2011 14:43

That depends..........

zarathustra wrote:

Do I deduce from this an the gentleman wearing 16th Century military attire that you have a services background?

 

..........what you mean by "services"!!!  Certainly not military ones.

(Oh dear - I feel the spirit of Becky hovering above me - I shall forthwith desist.)

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19th Aug 2011 14:43

Added Value

The secret of keeping clients is to allow them to be aware of what you actually do for them and let them calculate how much it would cost them in time if they did it themselves, and charge accordingly.

I find that any client who chooses us based on cost alone will leave for the same reason.

Interestingly, our most successful and rapidly growing client, came to us as a second choice. The client interviewed various accountancy practices and chose the one who was willing to charge the least (25% of what we were prepared to charge) After her first years trading she was knocking on our door as her "accountant" had let her down badly and the rcords had been very poorly maintained. We sorted it out, re visited the first year and produced proper accounts, we actually charged a premium for the work so she ended up paying us more than our original quote AND she had paid the other firm. She is now firmly with us and reccommends our practice to anyone and everyone with the advice. If you are in business you need an accountant who understands your business and their own business, just like every other thing you get what you pay for" 

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19th Aug 2011 14:46

SAGE

Finest quote I have heard is

Giving a client sage is akin to giving a monkey a machine gun

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tom123
19th Aug 2011 14:52

ABSOLUTELY BRILLIANT

ccassociates wrote:

Finest quote I have heard is

Giving a client sage is akin to giving a monkey a machine gun

and oh soooo true.

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19th Aug 2011 16:11

Is the fat lady singing?

My largest Client is involved with 30% of my fee income and if he left my business would fail.

This is made up of 3 Limited Co 4 Partnerships 2 trusts and complicated tax returns for husband and Wife plus about 6 referrals

As he is my most important client I am in touch with him twice monthly when nothing is happening and immediately if required.I read your email this morning and thought s*** what would I do.

You say he has left but he will ring you on Monday. I think you should fight and try to keep the Client which makes Monday one of the most important days since your business started.

The first thing to do is try and control the situation. Maybe you could contact him and try and fix a time when you can call him so that you are psyched up and ready for the call.  List the various items that you want to cover but try and get him to talk and reestablish empathy with him. Consider why the fee is so high and how he benefits from what you do. Remember the new accountants are guessing a fee can you break your fee down and look at ways for both parties to work together to give the client cost savings. Try and remain positive dont make him feel uncomfortable and if he does go try and keep things on good terms so that the door is still open for a return.

If he goes put it behind you and continue building but as others have said keep looking at your existing clients.

 

Maybe you will post what happens on Monday.

 

Good luck

 

 

 

 

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19th Aug 2011 18:39

disagree with edward no. 33

i have to disagree with edward no 33 above. first tab, do not take his advice.

your best plan is to stick to your guns. presumably you have not overcharged the client and also presumably you have tried to give a good service to the client.

If this is the case, then there is no sense in grovelling. As previously pointed out, the client is leaving because of reasons other than fees.

I believe you should act in the best interest of the client. Sometimes we have to acknowledge that we are not best equipped to deal with certain clients, for whatever reasons, personality, experience, location, it can be a myriad of reasons.

In these cases it is best to wish the client well, but keep the door open, if things don't work out well for them.

There is no shortage of work for qualified accountants and tax advisers. New clients coming in will soon fill the void.

 

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19th Aug 2011 17:14

Tony

We can all speculate and offer advice in certain circumstance. All of the advice has been good. The fact is we dont know why the client left no matter what the client says. FirstTab is the only person who has a chance of finding out and then he must decide what to do next. Unless he has a lot of experience in this situation it is difficult to get it right.

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