Peter Watkins, the founder of Blue Penguin, set up his practice and works only with cloud systems. He uses Senta to ensure accuracy and regulate client comms.
Peter is very serious about a work-life balance, and this is, in fact, one of the reasons why he decided to set up his practice and work only with cloud systems, to have the flexibility to work from anywhere.
Technology is essential to reach that work-life balance, so he uses tools such as Google Meet and Zoom for meetings with his clients and delegates tasks to his bookkeeper through Senta when he needs to.
The importance of adapting workflows to your firm
“Originally we were using spreadsheets for client management but then we missed a few deadlines and realised we needed proper software. We tried a couple and decided to go with Senta.
I spent a lot of time tweaking and customising the workflows in Senta to match how we worked.
That’s the great thing about this software. I know that if I wanted to add 200 tasks to create a set of accounts, I could do that.”
Automated emails with a personal touch
We’ve recently moved all our email to G-Suite, which integrates really well with Senta.
Now, if I send an email from Senta it also appears on my Gmail. When I need to work out what I’ve spoken about with a client I don’t have to log into two systems.
It’s important to take the time to make the automated emails sound like they are coming from you as a person because everybody writes differently.
Time-saving is what people always bang on about with automation, but small firms are a bit reluctant because it requires a lot of time and input to get it to work in the first place.
In our case, as we have a very small practice there hasn’t been a massive time-saving from the automation of emails yet. But as we grow, that’s going to pay dividends, so I’m hoping that in five years we’ll think this is the best thing we ever did.
At the moment it is more about not forgetting to email clients when we need to, which is important. But it’s also about making sure that things are accurate.
For example, when it comes to payroll, we have set up automatic emails on a client-by-client basis, telling them the information they need to pay their tax. Normally there would be a risk that you might type the client’s UTR the other way around or something like that, so having the automation in place we know that it’s going to be right 100% of the time. ”
If you want to try Senta for yourself, you can have a 30-day trial, for free. Sign up here.