Founded in 2002, Longboard wanted to join the cloud revolution. They could see value in cloud working, and wanted to impart more insights to their clients. Being Excel users, they knew the benefits of spreadsheets but wanted to provide more.
Longboard’s aim to be better advisors has been achieved with the help of Futrli. They’ve been saving time on each process. All the data they’re working with is in real-time, so when they meet with clients they can ensure accuracy. That’s invaluable to a business.
Futrli has allowed the team to get even better at advising the business owners they work with. It’s allowed the team to be more creative in their thinking. Client relationships have strengthened, which has led to much better client retention. Signing up with Futrli has meant the whole team are enjoying providing value to their customers.
Interview in full
Located in Perth and Melbourne, Australia, the practice was founded in 2002 by Michael Adams. Its senior partners combine vast academic and practical experience attained across the globe and use that knowledge to help influence the firm’s forward thinking and professional attitude.
Senior Partner, Martin Tunley, recently joined Longboard Chartered Accountants to apply his extensive experience of working with tools like Xero to help grow the firm’s already renowned reputation for enabling clients to get the most out of new cloud accounting technology.
“What attracted me to Longboard is the practice gives clients a complete business solution,” says Martin. “It’s always prided itself on being a valued partner and consultant, rather than just a firm that handles compliance.
“With Futrli we’ve been able to get even better at advising those we work with. It’s allowed us to invest more creative thinking into how we work and as the benefits of this approach become clear to our clients, so our relationship with them strengthens. It’s win-win for both sides.”
Martin’s rich experience in his accounting career with producing financial reports in both Excel and via cloud platforms like Xero, has given him the perfect perspective to see the unique advantages of Futrli over more traditional techniques.
“Using Excel has always been a time and data-heavy process,” says Martin. “Producing a report for a client that used to take four hours we can now do in a fraction of that time. What’s more, we don’t have to worry about ‘look up errors’ or mess around with importing and exporting data. Futrli eliminates formula problems and continually syncs the data we need in the background without us having to do it manually.
“If the streamlining of the process and the resultant saving of time wasn’t enough, there’s also the fact all the data is in real-time. So when we meet with clients the figures are accurate, not based on information that could be weeks old. That’s invaluable to a business.”
The improved workflow that Futrli brings to accountants also has positive knock-on effects for their clients too. By being able to increase the time available to analyse data and assist clients in planning for their future, Martin and his team are helping their customers reevaluate how they work too.
“We have one client that runs a restaurant,” explains Martin. “Before most of what we did for them was compliance. We handled their bookkeeping and we could spend anything up to eight hours a week just doing reports for them. Everything was reactive.
“Thanks to Futrli we’ve cleaned up the process and now spend most of our time advising them on business matters.”
It’s been so successful that Martin’s clients now have changed some of their own working practices as a result.
“They now regularly sit down with their staff to swap ideas on how to grow their business,” says Martin. “From menu ideas to potential cost savings, they’ve found the time to be more creative in their planning and are reaping the rewards That’s all because the accounting process has gone from being reactive to proactive.
“A worrying number of businesses don’t have the time or expertise to budget, plan or forecast. Futrli frees you and your clients up to do just that.”
Futrli’s ability to dramatically cut down on data entry and reporting time, yet still yield more valuable and more easy to understand data than other methods, is one of the reasons more and more firms are buying into cloud accounting.
“It’s probably the most exciting time ever to be an accountant,” says Martin. “Seeing the progress being made in our profession thanks to tools like Futrli is phenomenal. It’s changing the perception of what accountants can do and how important they are to a business that wants to grow.”