5 Questions You Must Ask Yourself Before Jumping Into Advisory

All accounting firms want to attract and keep successful farming clients. These clients are ambitious, not price-sensitive, and recognize value when they see it. However, profitable farming clients don’t just want compliance services. They’re also keen on advisory services.  

This increasingly in-demand service has flipped the accounting business model on its head and emerged as the “sweet spot” of growth for all accounting firms.

For over 25 years, Agrimaster has serviced the management account software needs of over eight hundred accounting and business advisory firms. After numerous conversations and market research, we have concluded that establishing and offering a broader non-compliance advisory service takes two years, on average. This is because while developing an advisory practice within your firm is not technically or intellectually tricky, it does require planning and a long-term commitment to the process.

To make the job easier for you, we have built a 3-part blog series on how to successfully transition from accounting to advisory. We discuss everything from being prepared to make the jump to building an advisory cycle. We also share how to build a 24-month rolling cash flow budget in just a day and use it the right way to help your clients’ business thrive and, therefore, your business succeed.

But before we go deeper into it, it’s essential to understand the difference between the two.

Difference Between Accounting And Advisory Services

Farm business accounting services primarily entail helping your client become more tax-efficient. This includes compliance, asset protection, wealth management, and governance-related work like succession planning and retirement strategies. On the other hand, advisory services revolve around business planning and budgeting, strategic reviews, cash flow forecast modeling, and growth and profit diagnostics.

Since, instead of just helping clients stay compliant, the purpose of advisory changes to assisting them in growing their business and increasing their net profit by managing and maximizing cash flow, the approach changes, too. It involves finding and solving your client’s deepest pain points by practicing empathy and patience.

Considering accountants are the number one trusted source of advice for clients, advisory services become a natural extension of your accounting business. But the firms that are truly successful at it are those that free up capacity, allocate serious resources, and are patient with growth.

Is Your Firm Prepared To Make The Leap? 

With the changing market landscape, the growth prospects of advisory services appear very lucrative. However, there are some critical questions that you need to ask yourself about your firm’s vision and strategy before you jump the gun. 

  1. Does your firm have a clear strategy and vision for its growth and direction over the next five years? 

  2. When thinking about strategy, how will you split time between compliance and advisory work, if any? 

  3. Does your firm want to eliminate compliance work altogether and only focus on advisory? 

  4. What percentage of advisory revenue does your firm foresee as part of overall company revenue? 

  5. Is there low-margin compliance work within your firm that you see dropping away in the medium-to-long term? Or do you have clients that an outsourced solution may better service? 

Before commencing the journey from accounting to advisory, take time to prepare and answer the above questions. Once you know the answers, you can take the next step to transition to a strong, reliable, profitable advisory income stream with all your partners and associates. 

Follow this series to learn how to successfully transition from accounting to advisory with Agrimaster. And fulfill your dream of a successful advisory business by joining our Partner Program. You get a free Agrimaster Standard subscription to run your practice, an opportunity to connect with new clients, and priority support from our expert team. We also offer exclusive discounts for any new clients you sign up.

Start your advisory journey now and be rewarded for your farm financial expertise. Learn more about the Agrimaster Partner Program here.