Managing your practice documents in the digital age

11th Dec 2020
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Historically, accounting was an industry that relied heavily on paperwork. But as accountancy firms have embraced digital and cloud accounting, we’ve seen the paperwork and paper files disappear and a plethora of different digital formats and storage solutions appearing in the average 21st century accountant’s practice management set-up.

The digital transformation of the industry has brought huge efficiencies and value to the accounting process, but it’s also left practitioners with an increasingly jumbled and complex number of data sources. So, how do you streamline your data, manage your documents and create a leaner and more automated way to manage your practice?

Streamlining your practice documents and data

As we said in our previous article, data is the fuel that feeds your accountancy firm. And alongside this data are the multiple documents needed to run your firm, whether it’s client tax returns, proposal documents for new prospects or engagement letters for new work.

To complete your client work, manage your practice workflows and meet your compliance requirements, it’s important to be able to access the right documents, at the right times. With a centralised data hub, like Onvio Client Centre, your clients can quickly share or upload their documents, making them instantly accessible in the cloud. And when you apply the same methodology to your internal practice documents, using the Onvio Firm Management solution, it’s easy to see the advantages of holding your practice information in the online space.

The benefits of digital document management

With all data, documents and information held in a central datahub, the whole process of managing your practice documents becomes far simpler and more effective.

Forget the filing cabinets, noisy office servers and outmoded external back-up drives of old. In 2020, your documents are made up of zeroes and ones, in exactly the same way as your accounting data. The key is to think digital, to change your mindset and to embrace all the benefits that cloud-based and digital document management brings to the table.

With a cloud platform such as Onvio, you get:

  • One point of truth for your information – all your data and documents is held in one centralised and fully integrated practice database, reducing the complexity issue.

  • Faster and easier access to documents – the whole team can access the information they need, without searching through multiple locations and databases. 

  • 24/7 mobile access to important documents – Onvio’s mobile apps bring you round-the-clock access to your documents from your smartphone or tablet

  • Easy ways to get client signatures – Clients can provide digital signatures for tax returns, engagement letters or final accounts, without having to visit the firm’s offices. 

  • Integrations with other practice tools – by using a suite of integrated and connected cloud tools, you can easily send data, documents or scanned receipts to other practice solutions – all of which enhances the fluidity and flexibility of your practice management. 

  • Digital connections with HMRC – With Making Tax Digital back on the agenda, an integrated practice management system makes it easier to file digital returns and send the required documents to HM Revenue & Customs (HMRC).

Taking document management to a new level

As we continue the evolution of the digital accountant, having flexible control over your data and documentation will become ever-more crucial. 

Whether you’re filing client tax returns, creating monthly management accounts or completing a payroll run, the whole process is easier when you have the required information, documentation and sign-offs available to you in the digital domain.

Real-time information can be shared with clients to help them manage their everyday finances and longer-term planning, increasing the value you add as an adviser. And your practice can run in a fast, efficient and more streamlined way, by embracing the efficiencies of going digital.

Whatever point you’re at on the digital transformation road, there’s genuine value to having an agile, well-integrated cloud accounting platform at the centre of your firm.

Find out more about the Onvio cloud accounting platform