The value of centralised client information

8th Dec 2020
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Data is the fuel that feeds your accounting firm. Without an efficient flow of client data and information, you can’t begin any of the other bookkeeping, accounting and tax preparation work. Collecting this data from your clients, and inputting the information into a central database in your accounting system, is a fundamental part of running an efficient and productive practice.

So, how do you ensure your data workflows are effective? And what benefits will a digital, cloud-based approach to data management bring to your accounting firm?

The challenge of collecting data

Think about all the different types of client information, documentation and data that flow into your accounting firm on a day-to-day basis. 

There are expense forms, VAT receipts, supplier invoices and all manner of different financial forms to deal with. In short, there’s a real challenge when it comes to collecting client information and data from multiple sources, and also in multiple formats. And when you factor in the inconsistent ways in which clients save and share their information, you can see how data collection and management can become extremely complex and time-intensive. 

This complexity leads to a highly inefficient data-collection process that's prone to error, lost documents and wasted business time – but it doesn’t have to be this way. 

Switching to an online data collection model

Adopting an online approach to data collection and storage resolves these issues, by providing the tools for clients to scan in their own documents and upload them straight into your accounting system, via the cloud. 

The Onvio suite of accounting and practice tools includes Onvio Documents and our mobile apps, giving you and your clients an easy way to scan and digitise information. You also have Onvio Client Centre – a centralised cloud hub for storing, accessing and managing all your vital client data and information once it’s been uploaded to the cloud. 

With Onvio at the heart of the practice, you can:

  • Go mobile with data collection – using the Onvio Documents mobile app, clients can quickly snap a photo of a receipt on the move, digitise it using optical character recognition (OCR) technology and upload the documents straight into Onvio Documents for retrieval. 

  • Work with your data on the go – our Onvio apps are available from both the Apple and Android app markets and work on smartphones or tablets. So, wherever you or the client may be, you always have access to your data, accounts and key numbers.

  • Onvio Tax Questionnaire - Request tax return data from your client via the Onvio Client Centre, for import directly into Digita Personal Tax, allowing your client to provide data seamlessly, and reducing the risk of re-keying errors

  • Sign documents on the move – mobile apps also allow clients to sign tax returns, fill in tax questionnaires and take pictures of their key documents, improving the level of communication you have with your business clients and speeding up workflows

  • Centralise your client data – all your client information is accessible through the Onvio Client Centre. Wherever you have access to Wi-Fi or 5G, you also have access to your data, making it easier to find the information you need at the click of a button.

Fast, simple, effective data collection

A digital approach to data collection and management brings your bookkeeping and compliance workflows into the 21st century, whether it’s collecting personal financial information from a director for an SA100 self-assessment job, or sourcing the hundreds of VAT receipts needed for a large SME’s quarterly VAT return.

By making it as simple as possible for clients to send their tax-related information to the accountant, you reduce the time and frustration accountants can feel when collecting data. And you also improve the speed, accuracy and overall productivity of the data-entry process.

With Onvio at the centre of your busy digital practice, you can be confident that the fundamentals of data collection, storage and management are all taken care of.

Key benefits include

  • Integration with popular cloud drives – Onvio links to well-known cloud storage hubs like Dropbox, Google Drive and Box, making it quicker, easier and more convenient for clients to share their documents.

  • Full mobile support – clients don’t need to wait until year-end to send over their financial information. Documents can be scanned on the go, as the transaction takes place, removing the need for the ‘shoebox of receipts’ at year-end.

  • Centralised client data – all your info is there in one online practice hub, allowing you to access the information you need in an instant, 24/7 from any device and any location

  • A more efficient workflow process – by going digital, you save time, add the convenience of cloud access and reduce the human error and time-wasting of the old approach to data input.

If data collection is eating into your practice time, now may be the time to switch to the cloud and bring the numerous benefits of digital to your firm. 

Find out more about the Onvio cloud accounting platform