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Accounting Firm Practice Management Insights with Ian Thompson (Uncut)

On today’s deep dive special edition episode, Rob Brown of the Accounting Influencers Podcast interviews Ian Thompson of Iris Star on what is working for accountants with practice management software.

Ian Thompson is a Senior Manager at Iris Star Practice Management. Providing solutions to accountancy firms since 1984, Ian joined Star in 1996. In 2019 Star joined IRIS Software Group. Primarily focussed on developing new client relationships and maintaining an existing client portfolio, he also has involvement in marketing, development and managing key vendor relationships, such as payments portal provider Apxium.

Ian’s experience with Practice Management covers all sizes of firm in the UK and overseas and has helped many firms to operate more efficiently and profitably. When not working, Ian is a keen cyclist, swimmer and skier. He is also looking forward to being a regular cinema and theatre goer again.

Key shownotes from the whole interview include:

➨ Whether 25 years in a tech/software business is a long time or not

➨ What Iris Global actually means and stands for

➨ How the acquisition by Iris changed what was happening in Star with more resources and assets

➨ The kind of accounting firms Iris Star Practice Management is perfect for

➨ What makes Practice Management so hard to define in the accounting world

➨ The big trends in Practice Management across the accounting profession globally

➨ The two essential outputs of a good Practice Management system

➨ How Iris Star Practice Management stacks up against the competition

➨ How the market narrows for more demanding Practice Management systems in accounting

➨ The two kinds of Practice Management challenges faced by accounting firms internationally

➨ Analysing the cloud vz desktop options for accounting firm Practice Management

➨ The big reason North America accounting firms lead the world in Practice Management

➨ Why it’s so complicated for accountancy firms to get something simple like a timesheet right

➨ What makes many accounting firms inefficient in the way they bill and use legacy systems

➨ The responsibility of software vendors in helping accounting firmsmake better tech choices

➨ Why Practice Management for accountants has not innovated and evolved as much as it could have

➨ How technology is changing Practice Management for accounting practices globally

➨ What the great accountancy firms do that the rest don’t when it comes to Practice Management

➨ How hybrid working models, mobile apps, AI, bots and data security are affecting accountancy Practice Management

➨ What has changed in the way accounting leaders run their firms over the last 30 years

➨ The battle between progressive accountancy leaders who want to drive change, and others who are reluctant to change

➨ What a push versus pull attitude to change has stifled innovation and imagination in many accounting practices

➨ The critical role of culture in driving change and adopting tech in accounting firms

➨ The % of revenue growing accountancy firms should be investing in technology

➨ The challenge of talent recruitment, especially with accounting firms being unwilling to jettison unprofitable clients

➨ The pain points or alarm bells an accounting firm might experience to prompt a fresh Practice Management conversation

➨ Whether Covid will change how accounting leaders run their firms

➨ Why there will be a lot more consolidation in the accounting market over coming years

➨ What gives us all hope for the future of the accounting profession

Star Iris Website: www.irisglobal.com/star

Ian on LinkedIn: https://www.linkedin.com/in/ian-p-thompson-b2bb2b5

NOTE TO LISTENERS:

This is a full-length interview (usually 20-30 mins long) from which the highlights show earlier in the week was taken. You can listen to this on a previous episode.

Martin and Rob love to hear from the show’s 6000+ listeners in 140 countries around the world. If you have any questions, suggestions, comments or success stories, just type sayhi.chat/aip into your browser and leave us a quick and easy voice message. We may just feature you on the show!