The Office Space: Can you tell me a little bit about account.able and what the company does?
account.able Director, Chris Jenkins: The short answer: we’re an accounting firm. We like to think we offer more than the stereotype would have you believe. While we do offer traditional accounting and tax services, our main focus is on helping our clients understand what is going on in their business and advising on how to improve. We try and use technology to automate or streamline business processes where possible so our clients can work smarter, not harder.
TOS: You guys take a really fresh approach to business accounting. What would you say is different about your approach?
CJ: I don’t think many people enjoy going to see their accountant. Often it is because the information being discussed is out of date and not relevant to what is going on in their business today. The coffee is usually terrible too! We realise that accounting doesn’t really excite anyone and that we need to offer our clients advice that is timely, relevant, practical and approachable. To do this, we generally go through the following steps: 1. Automate and streamline the boring bits in our client’s business. 2. Idenitfy key business metrics and pressure points and develop a reporting framework to track these. 3. Review and analyse reporting to make sure they track to their targets/goals. Our clients enjoy coming to see us, and get value out of the information and advice we provide. We get great coffees too!
TOS: What do you think has changed in the accounting industry over recent years when it comes to small business management?
CJ: A big disrupter in small business accounting and management is the development of a wide range of cloud based software packages (also known as Software As A Service, or SAAS). There are a number of systems available now that can be used to help manage and track all kinds of things. Small and medium businesses can now access the sort of system functionality and information that traditionally only big business has had access to (due to cost). This levels the playing field for the little guys and allows small business to be more dynamic and responsive. It makes what we do more exciting.
TOS: What’s next for account.able?
CJ: We’ve got some pretty exciting jobs in the pipeline, working with some well recognised brands and some exciting start ups. We’re also on the lookout for the magical machine that can do all our work for us. Sadly, I think this is still a while away…. We’ll let you know when we find it though!
TOS: Where is your favourite Surry Hills lunch spot?
CJ: This is like asking us to pick our favourite child… Honorable mentions must go to Single Origin, Bamboo dumpling house, Madame Nhu and Chur Burger. The Sandwich Shop is our pick. Possibly the best bacon and egg roll in Sydney. Friendly atmosphere and good coffee.
TOS: What do you like about working out of The Office Space?
CJ: The staff are great; the other tenants in the building are doing great things in their respective industries; everyone is friendly; great location; great food nearby. I guess you could say it’s great? The Office Space is a great fit for us, the approach to the service offered is the same as account.able in that the boring bits of being a tenant are taken care of for us so we can focus on what we need to focus on.