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Introduction to Level 5 - A Structure for the Client Centered Firm

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May 3rd 2018
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At one time, the AICPA Vision project identified the profession’s need to make sense of an increasingly complex array of information sources to improve the quality of information for decision makers.

But it’s been years since that came out and the question is, how many firms have actually re-tooled their professional staff to address this required competency? Moreover, what is the missed opportunity for firms that have not?

In the past, small to medium-sized businesses were largely managed based on lagging information. Relying heavily on historical financial statements that were months or weeks old, owners and managers were left with the task of trying to manage their future with a limited or delayed view of the company’s performance. But that’s not good enough anymore.

Level 5 Service, provided by CPAs, provides business owners and managers the business intelligence they need to compete in a global economy. Level 5 Service is a defined service continuum that addresses the desired Vision competencies.

CPAs that deliver Level 5 Service help their clients leverage information resources, develop new performance measures tied to the goals and strategies of the organization and organize those measures into a cohesive reporting system. The ideal performance reporting system has the flexibility to provide valuable decision support for owners and managers while also providing real-time line of sight feedback for all levels of employees.

The traditional role of the CPA plus their objectivity and independence puts them in the unique position of seeing the company from a very balanced, big picture and detailed perspective. Level 5 Service is not just a new process for delivering accounting services, but a philosophy that starts with the realization that accountants can provide a very accurate set of financial statements without providing the insight their clients seek.

It encompasses what we think of when we hear the term “trusted advisor” for firms who are able to live up to that moniker. It provides a tangible definition of what it means to really add value to a client’s business.

Level 5 service goes beyond our current perceptions of a traditional CPA, the Mind Set, Skill Set, and Tool Set required for the next generation of CPAs to be successful. The process includes a step-by-step linear progression of service offerings and corresponding value for firms to adopt. Additionally, it is a service approach that helps accounting firms attract and retain quality staff.

To learn more click here to download a guide to the thinking behind Level 5 service.

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By Saurabhcloud64
May 4th 2018 02:47 EDT

Thanks for providing the detailed and very informative article

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