Moe Tabesh: Q&A – LeanLaw Accounting Pros

LeanLaw Accounting Pro Moe Tabesh understands that accounting isn’t just about completing the required paperwork and submitting your taxes on time—it’s about understanding where your money is coming from, where it’s going and how you can maximize your savings. Moe is an Advanced QuickBooks ProAdvisor.

What are your best practices for onboarding a new client?

I interview the clients, listening to their concerns and explaining our process.

We have developed a checklist for a series of actions once the engagement contract is signed: Right away we set up QuickBooks Online, Dropbox, receipts bank, and obtain consent from for the Canadian Review Agency.

We connect apps to QuickBooks Online based on client needs and specification. Then, we set a schedule for deliverables, such as bank and trust reconciliation, tax filing, payroll, remittances, and reports. When everything is mapped out, the clients know what to expect and our offering is clear.

Law firms have unique forms of compensation. How do you help them organize and execute?

The major area that we need to focus is on the trust accounting which Leanlaw makes much easier than QuickBooks by itself.

How do you advise your law firm clients with regard to IOLTA trust accounts?

Trust account reconciliation is on the top of our list:

  • To make sure everything is booked and expensed adequately
  • To submit to law society (Canada) when they are asking for it.

Why did you become a QuickBooks ProAdvisor?

I have been using QuickBooks for the past 20 years and from day one, it was the most user-friendly software I had come across. Our firm uses QuickBooks Online for 100% of our clients. We are at Elite Pro Advisor Level with Intuit.

What financial information should an attorney be reviewing to ensure her practice is fiscally healthy? With what frequency should this data be looked at?

First, look at comparative financial statements, which include balance sheet and income statements. Pay attention to numbers, they do tell a story.

Analyze and identify trends and compare that with what you had expected to pay or earn.

Next would be to drill down to places where the percentage of changes were drastic from one year to another. Identify what caused the fluctuation.

If a principal attorney were to look only at one report, which is the most important?

I would look at financial statements, meaning balance and income statements. The monthly income statement reveals a story about the overall health of the law firm operations. The fluctuation of data and changes in ratios can help the practitioner make decisions and see the results of his efforts, growth, profit and so on.

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.

Get a backup from the old version and go to QuickBooks Online as fast as you can. Choose additional apps for your firm, timesheet apps, artificial intelligence apps, cash flow apps, budget apps.

The artificial intelligence app, for example, knows where to go and get reports: A lawyer can type, “how much did we bill last month?” and the software CHATA AI will retrieve the info without the lawyer going into software and finding the command or report. Some valuable time can be used.

Helm cash flow software reveals cash flow in an animated graph. Once the lawyer sees a red line (negative cash flow) the lawyer can move a box on the graph to where the blue line exist. The software then suggest what can be allocated to the blue period. It is extremely user friendly.

The budgetO app links with QuickBooks Online and retrieves data with a few simple tweeks. A budget can be created in 15 minutes.

Tsheets takes care of employee hours and sends it automatically to QuickBooks so payroll can be prepared. Employees can use their own smartphones, when on a client site or log in at the law firm. A great feature is a satellite pin, telling the user where they were at time of work. Lunch and breaks can be tracked as well.

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?

My advice is convert to QuickBooks Online right now. This is just like when the automobile was invented and some people still wanted to use a horse and carriage. If you want to be faster, better, smarter, you must use cloud technology.

What makes QuickBooks Online a better tool for small law firms?

Again, the cloud feature makes your data more powerful, more efficient, more effective. Smarter.

How is QuickBooks Online affecting the accounting community? Is it changing how bookkeepers and accountants interact with their clients?

It has revolutionised our community and this is just the beginning. We are more proactive. Being constantly connected is just like us being present in the clients’ offices.

To learn more about Moe Tabesh, you can go to his website or give him a call at (613) 266-7013

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