LeanLaw Accounting Pro and certified ProAdvisor for QuickBooks Online, Kanika Redd, understands the challenges, stress and distraction that come along with keeping track of your company’s financials and the day-to-day operations of your business. With 15 years of corporate accounting and financial reporting experience, her aim is to give her clients the opportunity to focus on the growth of their business while she concentrates on the books, analyzing financial data to help maximize profits and growth opportunities.
How are law firm clients different from other clients?
The main differences, as far as bookkeeping/accounting are concerned, are in the way the trust accounts are handled, understanding how the billing and invoicing flows, tracking time and reimbursable client expenses. Otherwise, it is very similar to other clients in recording transactions, running and interpreting financial statements and reconciling accounts.
What makes QuickBooks Online a better tool for small law firms?
QuickBooks Online offers a more user-friendly platform and a collaborative environment to work with the bookkeeper/accountant. It makes working together easier and can also be accomplished virtually.
How do you advise your law firm clients with regard to IOLTA trust accounts?
The best way to handle the IOLTA trust accounts using QuickBooks Online is to set up separate liability accounts for each client and/or matter. This way, there is no commingling of funds and you can easily reconcile to the trust account.
What financial information should an attorney be reviewing to ensure her practice is fiscally healthy? With what frequency should this data be looked at?
I recommend an attorney review the income statement, balance sheet and trust bank account to G/L to trust liability account reconciliation. This should be reviewed monthly. This ensures that the trust accounts are always in balance and billing is up-to-date.
If a principal attorney were to look only at one report, which is the most important?
I would say the trust account reconciliation is the most important since attorneys can be disbarred if they are not correct, kept separate and in compliance.
Why did you become a QB ProAdvisor?
Most people have heard of and/or used QuickBooks so they trust it and being an advisor says to people that you are an expert at QuickBooks Online and can also be trusted. I became an advisor for that reason as well as the training involved in the certification process.
Good bookkeeping seems to be about repeatable workflows. How do you get an organization trained when you start working with them?
While repeatable workflows are important, good bookkeeping/accounting involves much more. Properly recording transactions and interpreting the information is far more important. Once you understand your clients’ goals, you can use the financial information to advise your clients on what they need to do to meet those goals and be even more successful in their business. After all, the main goal of hiring an outside bookkeeper/accountant is so that the client can focus less on bookkeeping and focus more on running and growing their business and making sure it is successful. It really is a team effort to ensure the success of the client’s business which leads to your success as a bookkeeper/accountant.
We have a slew of clients moving into QuickBooks Online from non-QuickBooks accounting platforms. What guidance can you offer to help them manage this migration.
I would say for them to be open to the change. It’s actually a great platform when set up properly.
Given an inherent bias that folks have who use QuickBooks desktop over QuickBooks Online, what do you say to those considering moving online? Is the bias valid?
I think with the constant changes QuickBooks Online has and continues to make, the bias is no longer valid. QuickBooks Online is a great platform that offers more efficiency and collaborative work environment between the attorney and bookkeeper/accountant.
How is QuickBooks Online affecting the accounting community? Is it changing how bookkeepers and accountants interact with their clients?
I think it has changed how bookkeepers/ accountants interact with their clients. Meetings can be over the phone or Zoom where both parties are logged in together and can see the same things. It helps meeting go quicker and information is assimilated easier. Also, the attachment capabilities and the app integrations, make QuickBooks Online more efficient and a quicker process so the bookkeeper/accountant can focus more on analysis.
For more information about Kanika, you can go to her website, www.primaryfocusbookkeeping.com
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