Growing a successful accounting firm is lots of work. You may find your plate pretty full with finding clients, doing accounting work, invoicing, and many other tasks. That’s why it’s so important to find easy-to-use tools to help you be more productive.
Here are 13 tools you may not know about to help grow your firm and add some time back into your workday.
Pomofocus is a Pomodoro timer. If you aren’t familiar with the Pomodoro Technique, then here’s a quick rundown. It's a time management method developed to increase productivity and reduce interruptions. One pomodoro is equal to 25 minutes. During that time you remove all distractions, silence your phone, close out your email, put on some headphones, and go to work. At the end of the pomodoro (or 25 minutes) you take a 5-minute break. Check Twitter, use the restroom, grab a snack, then back to work. You repeat this until you’ve completed four pomodoros which equals 1 hour of work.
We like Pomofocus for a few reasons. It has a clean interface, and you don't need a login to get started. You can also create a to-do list and estimate how many pomodoros it will take to complete each task.
Canva is a game changer when it comes to graphics. Think Adobe Illustrator for dummies. This tool allows you to create professional-grade images with a few clicks. Choose the type of image you would like to create and Canva will show you a repository of easy-to-use templates—many of which are free to use. Canva is changing the game for non-designers and making them look good while they do it.
Have you ever tried to explain a flowchart to a coworker without actually having the visuals? It can be maddening. That’s where Lucidchart comes in. This free software helps you diagram your ideas and collaborate as a team. Need to build a client onboarding flow or a company org chart? Build whatever you need in minutes and share it or collaborate with your team in real time.
No more saving usernames and passwords on sticky notes or in a shared document. Shared passwords are a pesky security risk, and your firm can’t afford to have a breach. Store and manage all your passwords in one secure location. Running out of new passwords? Create completely unique passwords with LastPass. No more P@ssword123. LastPass can even help you share passwords with coworkers through a secure link.
Scheduling meetings with coworkers and clients can be difficult. Trying to find a time that works for both parties can be a frustrating activity in the best of times. Calendly allows others to schedule time on your calendar without the back and forth. The best part is that you stay in control of when you’re available. Set when you're in the office and clients will only see the available time slots.
Slack has helped organizations stay connected and organized throughout the pandemic. Slack is an instant messaging system for businesses. You can send direct messages or create channels to talk to the people you work with most. Try it out for free and keep your whole team connected no matter if you're in office or working remotely.
We know you’ve heard of this one, but we had to mention it. Zoom has been instrumental in schools and with community events over the last year. Many of you may have even started using it in your firm. Whether you're in-office or remote, Zoom can be a great tool for team meetings or meetings with clients. If a client needs clarification on something and a phone call won’t cut it, hop on a Zoom call. You can host unlimited one-on-one meetings for free
Have you ever wondered what people are saying about you online? Maybe not you specifically, but what about your business? Google will send you any new results that come up—straight to your inbox. Google Alerts helps you have a pulse on what is being said about your business or any other topic you choose. Want to be the first to know what changes are happening to the tax code? Set up an alert for that. Take the work out of searching for information. Have Google do it for you.
Need to send someone a walkthrough of a process change, but don’t have time for a Zoom meeting? Use Loom to create short screen capture videos to explain the change. Set up a free account and start sending videos. Use Loom for team member training or to clear up confusion around what you need a client to do. They're easy to create and you can start sending in only a few minutes.
Managing expenses in a firm can get tricky. In small- to medium-sized firms, the company credit card often gets passed around. In larger firms, you may have a system in place to track expenses, but many are clunky. Divvy helps streamline the expense budgeting and tracking process. See and categorize every expense that comes through. Create virtual cards for recurring expenses or team members. You stay in control of your money through the whole process.
While not strictly a productivity app, Momentum helps add a little beauty to your day. This Google Chrome extension showcases different photographs from around the world. Open a new tab and you can add your to-do list, check the weather, and see what percentage of your workday is complete.
This one is for you writers. This simple, free tool polishes up your writing when you need it most. Whether you're sending an email out to all your clients or re-writing some of your website copy, run your document through Hemingway Editor and you’ll see where you can cut some adverbs or use a more active voice. This app is a must-use if you’re writing anything.
We're on a mission to streamline your accounting firm. We understand an efficient firm is a profitable firm. So, we're creating accounting practice management software that helps increase a firm's efficiency. Manage tasks, time, documents, and vital client information all with one centralized system. And that's only the beginning.
Try Canopy today. Upload your first 20 clients for free and see why so many accountants are choosing Canopy.
Disclaimer: You're responsible for keeping your client data secure. You should review all third-party software yourself or consult your IT team before adding it to your firm’s computer systems.