This post has nothing to do with sales tax, but I was fascinated by the conclusions of a survey recently done by L. Harris Partners. They recently surveyed 4,000 different clients of CPA firms and 600 partners of CPA firms. The surveys took place throughout 2012 and 2013. The survey’s covered a lot of different topics and reached a variety of conclusions. The conclusions that were most significant to me are:
- 29% of clients surveyed were not aware of the range of services offered by their CPA firms,
- 32% of the clients surveyed said that they use multiple CPA firms to get the services they want,
- only 8% of CPA partners believed their clients used other CPA firms!
So why do I find surveys like this interesting? Because I get a lot of my work from clients who have other CPAs who they use for other work. In essence, I am grateful that 32% of the companies are using firms other than their CPA. I wish it were more.
However, there is no excuse for a client not to know the services provided by their CPA. It’s also perfectly reasonable for CPAs not to offer all the services that their clients need. In that situation, the CPA must have the network of specialists to refer clients to in that situation. This is how I work with CPAs since most firms really don’t have a deep bench when it comes to multistate sales tax matters. www.salestaxstrategies.com.
If you are a CPA then you should pay close attention to the results of this survey. Make sure your clients know what you do and make sure, if they are going to use another CPA, that you are involved with that selection process so you can hold onto that relationship and the revenue.
Ned Lenhart, CPA