By: Paul Murray, Posted on: September 28, 2017

Welcome to our new Software Spotlight Series—where industry leaders share their favourite cloud solutions. First up is Jonathan Kane, head of RBK Advisory, a Melbourne firm of accountants and financial advisors. RBK Advisory launched in November 2016 and now has eight staff and five referral partners in four office locations across Melbourne.

What do you like about using cloud software across your business?

JK: It allows us to compete with the big guys. We can be fluid and flexible, offering quick and efficient services and advice to our clients. Because cloud solutions save manual time, we can deliver services and advice much faster than firms using traditional systems. Also, we care about sustainability, so cloud solutions help us reduce our paper usage. So, it’s is a secondary bonus we appreciate.

What practice tools did the firm historically use?

JK: As we launched in November 2016, we’re too young to have any history of practice tools!

What’s your IT setup? Cloud or a hybrid?

JK: We are 100% cloud based, and mostly paperless, except for a few notes taken during meetings or calls. We rarely print documents or use notepads. The cloud tools we use make it easy to go without paper.

What are your favourite software solutions?

JK: First on my list is Practice Ignition. It’s amazing. We use it to quote upfront for our work so our clients don’t get bill shock. We customise it to our parameters so it’s really easy to build a professionally branded quote detailing our services and scope. Once the job is approved (digitally of course) and the job is completed, it automatically draws the funds. It helps debtors know when bills are due and helps us get paid quickly. It processes credit card payments, and the credit card details are stored securely and safely—we don’t manually store any details. It allows clients to spread out payments for larger jobs in installments which is great for our cash flow.

NowInfinity is another favourite. It manages all our ASIC and compliance. We use it to set up companies, trusts and bank accounts for clients, all done online. We pay a fixed fee for as many trusts as we want. It links with the ATO so it’s fantastic for ABNs and TFNs. Because it syncs with Xero Practice Manager, we can set up a new entity, and push it straight to our system without having to enter extra details again. Also, it pulls data from our system to prefill forms, saving us manual time. And, NowInfinity looks after all our clients’ superannuation contributions, withdrawals and pensions. We love that it provides legal documents such as power of attorney, confidentiality agreements, commercial loan and lease documents, which we customise for when our clients need partnership agreements. There is much more potential for documents—we are continually exploring and finding new resources. It’s terrific.

Docusign is great because we have four co-working spaces and we don’t waste time running between offices to sign documents. With no physical files, it saves clients time too—they don’t have to visit our office to sign every single BAS. With the app, clients can easily sign and send back documents, saving us time waiting for signatures. It integrates with all other software, and all our logging requirements go out through DocuSign. It is a big part of our commitment to being a paperless office.  

Any others you like to use?

JK: We like AccountKit of course! We use OneNote for note taking on client correspondence and chats. I like that there is different levels of access to notes, so we can keep confidential discussions private. Trello is an integrated workflow system that runs all our jobs. Because we are moving away from email, we use Slack for interoffice correspondence, which links through to Trello as well. Spotlight is good for monthly reports and we use HubDoc and ReceiptBank for bookkeeping projects too.

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