Tax season: cross your fingers or do the right thing?

Tax season: cross your fingers or do the right thing?

The Beeye Team - Jun 13, 2022 11:52:17 AM

Every year, firms prepare to tackle the tax season with some excitement. There are two schools of thought: those who hope for the best, and those who plan for the best. The good news is that there is a way to prepare optimally for this traditionally tense time.


It's never too late to make life easier for ourselves during tax season 

There's no point in lying to ourselves: when the tax season comes around, it's a little late to review the firm's production processes in depth, draft new procedures and reassess the organization of assignments. Against the backdrop of rapid automation, however, firms simply cannot avoid such structural endeavours.  

Quick and effective solutions exist to save time (without compromising the quality and conformity of the work, of course) and to make work within the firm more fluid. Here are some of them, which can be implemented quickly and which will produce results immediately.


Actions to be taken to save time on production  

There are two main types of levers available to firms to save time in producing their clients' accounts. 

Acting on the tools  

The tax season is clearly not the best time to review the firm's tools in depth, but it is still possible to automate production a little more, particularly regarding the retrieval of documents (bank transactions, invoices, etc.) and therefore, by extension, the entry of documents. 

One of the causes of bottlenecks during the tax period has in fact to do with the concomitant recurrent tasks (collection, entry, returns, etc.) and exceptional tasks (closing of annual accounts) over a short period. By adopting new data recovery tools (sales, purchases, banks) albeit belatedly, the firm frees itself from the collection and entry of documents for 2022 (the current period) and even from the entry of 2021 documents for clients who bring in their documents for the year in one go in the midst of the tax season. The time saved by these new tools is particularly significant. If the client does not want to scan the documents himself, he can simply ask one of the firm's employees (as little as possible) to do this work as soon as the documents arrive.  

The recent health crisis, with its lockdowns and the rapid development of teleworking, has convinced many previously reluctant entrepreneurs of the benefits of dematerialization. You may also have taken advantage of this period to develop or reinforce the use of these tools by your customers. 

If you have not done so, there is still time to get started. And if you have already started, there are probably still some clients who have not yet switched to these tools and who could do so quickly. These tools are easy to learn (for both clients and employees) and the time savings are immediate. 

Acting on processes  

Here once again, it is not necessary to review your firm's production processes in depth as the tax season approaches. There are however a few simple actions that can be taken that will have an immediate impact in terms of time savings for the firm's team. 

The first action is to identify and remove all tasks that are of no benefit to clients and are not required by legislation or professional standards. In other words, eliminate unnecessary tasks (overly precise work, systematic checks, unnecessary reminders, overzealous checks, etc.) that waste the team's time and weigh on schedules and the profitability of projects. 

In concrete terms, here are some ways of eliminating (or at least significantly reducing) such unnecessary work: 

  • Stop reminding the client every month to send us documents that they have most certainly lost anyway, 
  • Set up a significance threshold (for the record, this significance threshold is provided for in the presentation standard), 
  • Stop passing closing general journal for a few tens or hundreds of dollars..., 
  • Eliminate unwarranted photocopies and comments in the working file. The working file should only contain information that is necessary to understand the project; 
  • Eliminate unnecessary controls, those that take time without contributing anything to the quality of the annual accounts (general expenses without issues...). 

Of course, these actions will only save a few dozen minutes per file. But a few dozen minutes multiplied by a few hundred files will quickly add up to significant time savings. 


Actions to make the workflow run more smoothly in the firm  

Working more efficiently  

There are many sources for wasting time in the office and some of them can be easily eliminated or at least reduced significantly:  

  • Answering an e-mail or a phone call while working on a file. Of course, there is no question of not answering clients, but it is quite possible to reserve time slots for them during the tax season. The rest of the time, the employees remain focused on their files... and thus gain in efficiency. 
  • Starting to work on a file without having all the documents, which will mean having to stop and ask for the missing documents and then start again later. To avoid this, it is essential to introduce a procedure for checking the documents received on the file before starting to process it; and then to start processing only complete files that can be dealt with in one go. 

Better planning of assignments  

The organization of production throughout the tax season is also an important source for saving time for firms, one which is far too often neglected. Most firms do plan the tax season at the beginning of the year. However, due to the lack of suitable tools, this planning often has two major shortcomings: 

1: It takes up a lot of time for the partners and/or the firm's heads of assignment: to plan the files, follow the schedule with the staff throughout the tax season, adapt the planning during the season, etc. 

2: It is difficult to follow-up (and to adapt as the period progresses). However, the life of a firm is often made up of unforeseen events (absence, departure of an employee, signing of a new assignment, arrival of a new client and/or a new employee, etc.), which means that planning must be adapted constantly. 

Planning remains essential, however, as it makes it possible to meet deadlines and budgets. It is therefore vital to manage schedules in real time so as to maintain the performance of the firm and preserve peace of mind for the teams! 

"Planning projects is an important source of efficiency (and therefore of profitability) for firms. It is possible plan in Excel, of course, and many still do. Beeye is an ad hoc planning tool. It offers great flexibility in terms of planning to assign tasks and projects, manage unforeseen events, new missions, absences, departures, etc. It also enables the entire team to share information in in real time. In other words, the time saved is real.” 

The use of an efficient planning tool also makes it possible to distribute tasks on the same project among the various employees, according to their specific skills. 

"Beeye segments assignments into homogeneous blocks of tasks. This makes it possible to allocate these blocks of tasks according to the skills of the various participants in a given assignment. Employees who are always overloaded can thus entrust part of their tasks to other employees who are more available. Here again, thanks to Beeye, firms gain in fluidity.” 
Adrien Sicard, CEO co-founder of Beeye. 

Using a planning tool also makes it possible to allocate the firm's scarce resources in an optimal way (for more details on this issue, please refer to this previous article). These rare resources (accountants, project managers, specific skills, etc.) may create bottlenecks in the process and cause delays. 

When to start 

It is always possible to take certain actions to reduce the length and difficulty of the tax season, while improving the profitability of the projects, without waiting until the last moment! 

  • For actions relating to production optimization, a team meeting followed by quick decisions for immediate implementation is the best way to proceed. 

Why not use an ad hoc software for these issues like Beeye when planning the firm’s projects? To find out more about the tool's features, please go to 

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