Given the changes in markets from banking to hotels and from publishing to retail, accountants have been guiding their clients through the most challenging business climate in decades. Yet just as taxi firms and shopkeepers can be blindsided by fast-emerging online businesses, so accountancy practices are not immune to a new breed of competition. While you’re busy investing your energies into your clients, have you had time to plan your own digital era survival?
The positive for accounting firms, of course, is that there is no replacement for the skills and relationships that have been hard-earned over years. Still, we are in an era where brand loyalty can be pushed aside more readily in favour of new services. This means there is an opportunity for the more tech savvy practices, and a very steep challenge for others.
The key is getting the underlying technology foundations right, so you’re ready to capitalise on opportunities. It is all about having agility to test out new ideas, and roll out new services quickly. And of course, about supporting all your business-critical applications without overspending on your IT budget. This collaborative approach is at the centre of mcr’s success.
Technology is now closer to a consumable than ever, but there is every reason to be cautious. When you’re handling sensitive business information, you probably don’t want everything to be in the cloud. There are enough cautionary tales to keep most IT managers awake at night. With competition intensified in their own market, IT vendors like HPE and Cisco have been quick to pour resources into developing on-premise alternatives that create a best-of-both-worlds hybrid cloud approach.
The cloud-like scalability of technologies like hyper-convergence and composable infrastructure, or opting for managed infrastructure services, means always having access to more capacity when you need it, without paying for IT infrastructure you don’t need. The designs for these new models enable significant reduction in IT staff time, which is perhaps one of the most underestimated benefits of all.
Why? Your existing IT staff are a rare breed. They know your business fully, in all its complexity. And they see the possibilities that new technologies allow. What they have lacked previously, while they spent their days keeping the essentials working, is time.
Getting underlying infrastructure in order and building on automation means some of your key innovators have time to get creative with ways to attract customers, streamline processes, or identify efficiencies. They can get busy analysing the volumes of data your business has been storing all these years, and help you to understand your customers better.
Professional services are among the five industries accounting for half of all analytics investment, according to IDC. This means it is likely that the largest accounting firms are already starting to exploit the knowledge that can be gained. The cost, once in reach only of those with very generous budgets, has now dropped – meaning that smaller and mid-sized business can also exploit deeper customer and business intelligence.
mcr is here to provide you with the ability to assess your current technology capability and work with you to develop a plan to achieve an agreed future state. We do this in collaboration with your business and our network of partners and vendors. The result is a well explained and understood journey of change that delivers a reliable, cost effective and up-to-date environment that leads to more business and greater employee engagement. Get digital ready with mcr!