About

2perrcentagepoints

Welcome to a simpler, more profitable business model

In 2006 I joined a suburban accounting firm in Brisbane, Australia. The founding Partner had a well-defined vision, the business was growing, a second partner had joined to allow for growth, financial planning represented 10% of revenue and it was my role to introduce business advisory services. The firm was progressive in all the right ways.

However we were plagued by one persistent problem. We couldn’t attract the team members we needed.

Larger firms had bigger budgets, better locations and more appeal.  Competition from local firms was not particularly strong, however the available talent pool was very limited. How could we create an offering that would attract people over and beyond other, more tangible benefits?

So I addressed the number one frustration of employees in professional firms – timesheets.  I built a new model that focused on customers and prices, then aligned every area of the practice with that model. We introduced it to clients, one by one as they brought in their work. We didn’t lose a client.

The headline for our next job advertisement read ‘No Timesheets‘ and not much else. The content of the ad was mostly populated with our vision for the future, with little detail on the role itself other than a position title and salary range. We received a record number of applications, which was not that many, but previously we received few or none.

From that day forward we hired every team member we wished to hire. A 100% strike rate for the next 6 years.  Every candidate asked the exact same question within the first five minutes of the interview commencing: “How did you do that?” The change created excitement, which lead to momentum, that drove acceptance of more change, which resulted in growth.

The impact on our clients, lives, scheduling, cash flow, profitability, confidence, happiness, you name it – every single area of the business improved when we replaced timesheets. The amount of time that was freed up was extraordinary. While productivity in the traditional sense would have improved, it was the significantly less administration and reporting that created focus and capacity – and plenty of each.

Replacing timesheets and updating your business model is easier than you think – provided you follow a framework that has been proven. You’ve been evolving your model ever since you went into business. Otherwise you wouldn’t be using cloud based anything. This is just another update.

By this time next year your existing firm could be timeless.

Your journey to a timeless career can begin right now, by contacting me to arrange your initial consultation.

Michael Stewart

 

Career Highlights


Managing Partner

Integrity Wealth

“Truly firm of the future 2.0″
Ron Baker, Verasage Institute
  • Fixed pricing introduced 2007
  • Replaced timesheets Accounting division 2007
  • Replaced timesheets Financial Planning 2008
  • Replaced timesheets Bookkeeping 2010
  • Lockup (WIP + Debtor days) reduced to 45 from 120+
  • Direct debit only payment method accepted from 2008 (95% of clients accepted direct debit; the other 5% paid upfront)
  • Workflow – always booked to capacity 3 months in advance with signed engagement letters and direct debit forms from each client
  • Corporate model replaced Partnership
  • Flexible working conditions including working from home and 5 weeks annual leave
  • Profit increase 300%
  • Revenue increase 100%
  • Client numbers reduced by 25%
  • Administration reduced by 30%
  • Diversified into 5 other services

Chief Executive Officer

DLA Partners

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  • Double-digit top and bottom line growth

Chief Executive Officer

Irish Bentley Lawyers

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  • Double-digit top and bottom line growth
  • Successful beta-trial of replacing timesheets methodology
  • Implementation of fixed pricing and direct debit

Content Manager /
Start-Up Team

Businessfitness

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  • Creators of the How Now Document Management system and How Now Portal
  • Creators of Reportance
  • Good Bad and Ugly Benchmarking Reports, Polls & Surveys
  • Now in use by over 450 firms across Australia

Senior Client Manager

Principa

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  • Owned and run by Ric Payne, Principa relocated Michael to the USA to establish their northern American Division. After a successful launch, Michael returned to Australia to support Principa members back at home

Panel Member

Firm of the Future Forums

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  • Presented by Ron Baker of the Verasage institute, Michael was a panel member alongside ‘timeless’ professionals from other industries

International Applications and Content

RAS (Results Accountants’ Systems)

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  • Working for Paul Dunn and Ric Payne, and based out of Pleasanton California, Michael was responsible for the development of software, practice management and business advisory services for accounting firms internationally