A recent research project announced it had grown an expensive Mediterranean truffle in the UK for the first time. The Perigord black truffle , which can cost up to £1,700 per kilogram, was recently grown in Wales. The results of the research project holds exciting possibilities for the future as this particular species was never actually expected to grow in the UK. Through continuous monitoring over many years, the researchers were able to gradually see the opportunity that was presenting itself and to recognise its potential. 

It’s another example of change prompting us to revaluate our preconceived thoughts and challenging us to see the opportunity that change brings.  The question is can you recognise the opportunity when it presents itself?  I’m sure we have all read how compliance work is decreasing and that there’s an urgent need to move to business advisory services.

But is it really that simple?

Whilst it’s true the expectation of our clients is changing, it would also be true that many clients underestimate the services their accountants could offer them. Clients understand the requirement to submit Tax Returns and Final Accounts; compliance work primarily driven by the government. However many clients would not think of asking their accountants for management reports, cashflow forecasts or ‘what-if’ modelling. When presented with this information most clients would recognise how it can help them to improve their business. 
The first challenge of building a Value Added Service offering is understanding what services you wish to provide and to which clients.     

Why do you want to provide advisory services?

You wouldn’t give financial advice to a client without a basic understanding of their objectives, and this principle stands when considering advisory services in your own business. Questions to consider include:

•    You want to increase your income but the return from compliance work is declining
•    Your clients’ needs are changing
•    You want to embrace the opportunities arising from technological change
•    You want to have better engaged staff

Once you are clear on your offering you need the correct tools to make the job easy. IRIS Insight financial forecasting is the future of complementary accounting software.
Based in the cloud, IRIS Insight is the ‘go-to’ tool for every professional adviser who wants to get more from their data, make smarter business decisions, and have the ability to forecast more accurately. Business advisers can also easily monitor actual performance and KPI information. IRIS Insight integrates seamlessly with KashFlow and Xero to provide an overall package your clients won’t fail to be impressed by.

Some changes are easier to adopt. Adding a Value Added Services offering holds exciting prospects for practices and it’s a change that an increasing number of practices are adopting. With a clear client demand, easy to use tools and attractive returns it’s an opportunity for change that should not be missed. 

So the next time you drizzle truffle oil over your pasta take a moment to consider its origins, it could well have come from North Wales.