However, I’m beginning to see a different pattern in our industry… The thing is that everyone I speak to is busy. That is, busy handling compliance workloads and day-to-day business management.
What does this tell us? I believe the Australian small business is thriving in the current economic conditions. Confidence in the marketplace is driving demand for compliance work at excellent levels.
And yet, the majority of marketing messages are telling us to move into VAS.
The thing is that no-one actually knows what our industry will look like in ten years time. In the vacuum of certainty, there are a lot of big questions:
- What if VAS is a passing phase?
- What will happen to compliance in ten years?
- What happens if we spend the time and money setting up a business advisory that is ultimately a white elephant?
I don’t believe there are simple answers to any of these questions.
But I do believe that they all point to some underlying issues.
- Partners are busier than ever:
- Small business market is booming under favourable economic conditions
- Marketplace is demanding more
- Software companies have side tracked us with “educational marketing” designed purely to sell software and launch companies
- out-of-the-box Software solutions
- Profit margins being squeezed by software solutions and demanding clients
We have all this to process and respond to while we are still behind the desk every day trying to run the business.
There wouldn’t be a problem if we knew where the market would be in ten years time
If I had a crystal ball, if I could see where all this ends up in ten years time, it would be easy. Hindsight is perfect.
Recently one of my clients observed that compliance today shares only about 50% of the compliance services ten years ago. It’s a good reminder, that we just don’t what business will look like in a decade.
Simple Strategy in Complex Times
So in the interim, I suggest a simple approach:
- Ensure firm systems are efficient and effective
- Keep the team engaged
- Keep our services profitable (which is not possible without the first two)
That’s three distinct areas that I work with my clients on. Each requires a different approach, a lot of work to set up and some dedication to maintain.
The good news is that it can be made much more straightforward by taking a mentored approach.
Keeping Compliance Profitable during Changing Markets
Regardless of where the industry goes from here, if a firm cannot maintain profitability throughout the change, they cannot remain a viable business.
I believe the key to profitability of our compliance services remains:
Ensuring we have:
- The most efficient systems in place
- Maximum leverage of Partner and team roles
- Excellent client communication about value
Get Independent help with Pricing in your Firm
One of the best things we did back in practice was to get in an independent industry expert to help us benchmark ourselves against other firms and to offer rational advice on how to position our firm.
Book in for a complimentary Pricing Review in the next 30 days and get 30 minutes to discuss your current number one hurdle to taking your firm to the next level.
Get advice on:
- Pricing strategies, including how to transition to a premium pricing model;
- Turning your Team into experts who can automatically generate more work from existing clients as they deliver compliance work;
- Simplifying your delegation process so the Partners have more time higher value work; and
- Strategies for bringing all the Partners together as a tight knit management team.