With apologies to Steven Spielberg – “just when you thought it was safe to go back to the office”, we’re all back to lockdown.
With our office in Lancashire in Tier 3 lockdown, and our office in Livingston under the Scottish equivalent, we’re all still working remotely.
We had planned to reopen in October, but have recently told our staff not to expect to be back working “in person” until April next year. Pessimistic? Perhaps, but one thing that makes lockdown harder is uncertainty. How do you plan your life, if you don’t know from one month to the next whether you will be at home of in the office? By ruling out a return to the office for 6 months, it lets people plan a little bit further ahead.
So, like many people I’m going into my 8th month of working from my “study” at home. And when I say “study”, I really mean the kids old “playroom”, complete with pictures on the wall and Winnie the Pooh lamp shade!
But is it really the same as last time?
Of course not! We’ve done it before. We know it works, and we’ve learned the lessons. We’re better prepared for remote working, and it’s not nearly as scary as it was in March.
Speaking with solicitors across the country, I find more of us ready to embrace remote working, and alternative working arrangements. We’ve noticed a big increase in firms looking to outsource their accounts function. As usual, there are a number of reasons, but increasingly there seems to be 5 main drivers
- First, convenience – With The Cashroom you don’t need to worry about whether your account’s team will function if you’re working remotely – it already does! You can go in and out of lockdown as many times as you need to, without worrying about your accounts team.
- Second, security – you don’t need to worry about the security of email communication or whether somebody hacked your cashiers home computer. All our staff operate over a secure VPN, using our Portal, which undergoes regular penetration testing.
- Third, quality of information – if things are tight, it’s critical to know exactly where you are financially, and where you’re going. Previously smaller firms “skimmed” on management information. Not anymore. Our accounts team are extremely busy, producing management accounts, and most importantly, forward looking projections. We can provide quality financial information to firms who can’t afford to employ a Finance Director.
- Fourth, restructuring. Lockdown has forced many firms to look very carefully at how they work, and how they’re structured. We work with around 200 firms across the UK, and have unrivalled expertise and experience in how to structure a law firms accounts function for maximum performance and efficiency. Our projects team is helping many firms redesign their systems from the ground up.
- Finally – retirement. A lot of people have reassessed their work/life priorities during lockdown. A number of firms have come to us because their cashier has decided to retire.
Whatever the reason, there has never been a better time to outsource your accounts function to The Cashroom!
David Calder, Managing Director