Finding himself without his previous chartered accountant resource, Simon Morgan turned to TLC Accounts and Tracy to help.
Simon is the man at the helm of House of Morgan, a diverse set of businesses that includes events, networking and publishing.
“We’re running three businesses through House of Morgan,” he said, “as well as having a separate limited company.
“That part is quite straightforward, with transactions handled in the cloud. But the other businesses have varying transaction levels from under £50 to thousands of pounds, and these can be card payments, direct debits or paid by invoice.
“So not only are there reconciliations and VAT returns, there’s a fair amount of work towards the end of the financial year.”
Cloud accounting help
“We’d been working on desktop SAGE, which had its own issues with providing up-to-date information as well as paying for software and updates.
“Tracy came in and her first question was ‘why are you using SAGE?’ And to be fair, it was the right question to ask.”
Having weighed up the options, Simon decided to transfer House of Morgan onto cloud accounting with Xero.
“For me, it was about making all the information more accessible for Simon,” said Tracy.
“It had been a very reliable, traditional set-up with a lot of information held in different places. But he immediately understood the benefits of moving everything online with all the information in one place.”
Tracy implemented the first part of the move within six weeks. Simon was relieved and impressed by the changes.
“There were obvious tremendous advantages,” he said. “For a start, you can log in no matter where you are.
“You can automate things you couldn’t have done with SAGE. The other big plus is that it is in real time.
“With the bank feeds up and running, you can log in and see what’s actually there up until the day before. Before, we were working in the previous quarter, so that was a huge change.”
“I was slightly anxious because the last thing you want to screw up is your accounts. But Tracy laid out a plan of how she’d go through the mechanics of it and basically got stuck in.
“She was brilliant at managing our expectations, keeping us up to date with progress, and keeping us calm. I felt quite reassured during the process.
“Now, you can get what you’re looking for so much more quickly. In the office, I still raise all the paperwork but I can put a note on the system that Tracy can then read and she understands what needs done.
“The system has been the biggest help but I’m not convinced we’d be where we are now without Tracy implementing, running and the interpretation of what it means.
“The process has moved back to a true bookkeeping role, but that is what we need.
“Tracy prepares the books in real time, working on a week-by-week, or even month-by-month basis to present to the accountant.
“And of course because she’s such an expert on Xero, she flags any changes or upgrades and gently guides you through.
“Our overall spend has gone down. There is a lot more automation through Xero and that cut the bills, so after we got over the hump of making it happen, we’re now paying about a third of what we were before.”
Meanwhile, Tracy is delighted with how smoothly the new system has integrated into the business.
“What makes me happy is having a satisfied client. I could see what would improve the systems at House of Morgan, and how I could make it work for Simon with the absolute minimum of disruption to the business.
Efficient accounts help
“So we broke down everything that needed to be done and worked through it step by step.
“Now everything is much more accessible and efficient, easier to use, and seeing Simon’s satisfaction with the process makes me very happy.”
Simon didn’t hesitate to give his stamp of approval.
“Working with TLC Accounts is a pleasure and a joy,” he said. “It’s not your stereotypical number-cruncher bookkeeping, that provides you with all the information then takes a step back and says ‘good luck with that’.
“If you ask, she’ll tell you and if she doesn’t know, she’ll find out. I am hugely impressed with Tracy on a personal and on a professional level. I think you get the best of both worlds without compromising on either.”