Surviving the Busy Season in Accounting 2023

December 16, 2022

For UK accounting firms, the end of the fiscal tax year is rapidly approaching. We can expect the busy season in the UK to last from January to the end of the tax year on April 5th 2023 with potential fallout lasting well into May. 

With many tax years across the globe already delivering on their end of year assessments, and FPS Submissions (or equivalent) by January, it’s important that UK firms, and the other 18 nations that follow a similar structure, stay vigilant, and keep on top of the key dates across the industry. 

Read on to find our top tips on busy season survival for 2023.

Deliver on time with automation

Whether you have already dived into the world of digital transformation, or you’re looking to make the leap. One easy way to manage your workload during busy seasons, and the best way to make sure that you’re delivering work to strict deadlines is through automation. 

 

Accounting automation is a huge technological field that supports financial institutions and accountants in their day-to-day processes. Often implemented through accounting software like XERO and Oracle Netsuite (as well as many others on the market), automation allows you to complete tasks accurately and efficiently, freeing up the accountancy professionals in your firm to focus on data analysis and decision making - and in some cases, even new clients. 

 

Automation is not a replacement for CPAs, but it does support with, or entirely handle, some that would have previously taken traditional accounts significant amounts of time to manually complete. Invoicing, expenses, payroll services, payments and cash flow forecasting are some of the time-consuming areas that can now be part, or completely, automated, as long as they are set up correctly in advance. 

 

Not only will automation alleviate a majority of the prep-work required for the busy season, it also allows for cloud-based audit trails and digital back-ups of critical data - putting financial information at the fingertips of the controlling accountants, should they need to access it during busy periods.

Prepare your clients

As accountancy professionals, we know how time consuming it can be to chase clients for assessment data, or financial documents that act as the last piece in the jigsaw for their Full Payment Submission (FPS).

 

Getting a better handle on the busy season can sometimes be as easy as preparing your clients for the part they need to play in their own success. If you haven’t already, consider reaching out to reiterate the information that you will need from them in the coming months, checking any gaps in expenses, receipts or payroll data that you might be missing from their profile. 

 

Not only will this stop you from having to chase them, it could help alleviate your time management pains during the process too. Which leads us on to our next tip…

Use a time-blocking system for time management

As an accountancy professional, you’ll find that you more than share your seasonal stresses with your clients, and this can take precious time away from your daily responsibilities. Devoteing 20 hours a week on giving legal advice as a CPA can seriously affect your performance when you have multiple clients needing your service. 

 

The solution to this is setting channels for your communication, and using a time-blocking system to allow dedicated focus time. 

 

There’s a high chance that some of your clients are going to be late filing for their deadlines, and there’s also a chance that they may not be the largest contributors to your overall business revenue. So, blocking out time to focus on working with priority clients, time to respond to email requests or answer phone calls, and time to work with lower tier clients during busy periods might be the answer to decreasing time spent with unnecessary questions and chatter.  

 

Setting boundaries like these may lead to some client frustration initially, but by allowing CPAs time to focus, rather than leaving them open to client conversations, allows more time for the prioritisation and organisation needed for a much smoother journey through the busy season.

To sum up

If you’re interested in getting more support for busy seasons across the globe from our partnered accountancy firms, or you want to apply to become a member of INAA, and join our community of accountants, auditors, and consultants, visit our join us page today.