What are App Advisory Services for accountants?

What are App Advisory Services?

If you’re offering App Advisory Services you are looking at a business’ problems, understanding the processes that are causing the problems, and then using your knowledge or research to ascertain whether apps, or integrated app stack solutions, can be used to solve those problems within the budget constraints of the business. You may then offer setup, training, and support services related to the app(s), or app stacks.

A useful way to categorise the type of App Advisory Services you offer is whether they relate to your clients’ administrative or operational problems and processes.

Administrative Processes App Advisory

You’ll almost certainly start your App Advisory journey by offering administrative related App Advisory services. This is because:

  1. These are the apps related to the financial processes you already have a good understanding of, and
  2. You’re probably already going to be, or have the skills to be, providing data processing or business advisory services that these apps help with (we covered these in our blog – What is an App Stack?).

You will either:

  1. Use apps to support you in offering services yourself, with the client not being aware of or using the app themselves, except where providing data input (i.e. data capture apps). Or:
  2. If you’re not carrying out the related services for them, you may still advise them on the apps they should use to get to the outcomes they want on their own. Alongside this you might provide setup, training, and support to them.

In either case you need good processes in place that are regularly reviewed and updated, alongside staff that are trained on how to use and improve them.

Operational Processes App Advisory

There are a number of ‘entry points’ that make it more likely clients to ask you to support them with operational processes.

  1. You may be the only professional advisor that they engage with regularly, and they trust your advice.
  2. There is often crossover between what might be considered admin processes (i.e. invoicing) that you are already supporting clients with (i.e. bookkeeping/management reporting), and what is considered operational (i.e. job management). You’ve already supported them with streamlining aspects of their admin, so they now want you to help with their operations.

This type of App Advisory less related to your existing services, so in that sense it will be more of an unknown. Offering these services is unlikely to lead to much in the way of internal efficiency for you. If you don’t have a process for delivering these service then there’s a good chance it’ll cost you more than you gain.

If you want to offer operational process app advisory then start with industries that are more relevant to your client base. Check out our Knowledge Base article on assessing your client base for App Advisory service potential.

5 Core App Advisory Service Areas

Delivering profitable App Advisory Services starts with understanding the services that you could be offering to your clients. We think there are 5 key areas of service provision:

  • Fact finding or Digital Discovery – Your lead assessment tool
  • Process mapping – Understanding your clients processes and requirements
  • Research & evaluation – Discovering and documenting apps that may fit the requirements, analysing, and recommending apps to use
  • Implementation – Planning, testing, training, and using the apps
  • Support – Helping clients with using apps

Read more about them.

What is the App Advisory Opportunity?

Head to our Knowledge Base article for a short video.

 

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