Vend Advisor Heidi Seal, of Bay Business Services, partnered with Vend last year and has already activated 6 clients to Vend. We caught up with Heidi to learn more about her amazing work, her methods and her love of all things cloud.
Do you think the cloud is a revolution for small business?
Absolutely. The cloud makes high level and historically high cost systems available to SMEs for a fraction of the cost and enables SMEs to:
Access their data anytime, anywhere and anyplace (imagine the implications of this on business!)
Grow and scale with minimal cost and disruption
Expand their operations into new areas and simply ‘clip on’ another application from the eco-system to take care of business
Gain data in a timely way and make informed decisions based on actuals and transparency rather than speculation or gut feel
Collaborate more effectively across trusted advisors, staff, bookkeepers and accountants
Why did you choose to partner with Vend?
I love the problem solving aspect of offering implementation and training services for selected Xero Add-Ons like Vend. It’s an extremely important and satisfying process to scope & recommend – and sometimes implement and train – a business owner in applications that will enable their business to fly.
Bookkeepers live and breath SME business and often have a wide and in-depth knowledge of the nuts and bolts of the accounts and business operations. There is a prime opportunity for bookkeepers to show businesses ways to improve efficiency, save money and increase productivity.
Applications like Vend, when integrated with Xero, empower the business owner and accountant to see exactly what is going on in the business at any given moment. With clear and up-to-the-minute reporting, informed business decisions can be made in a timely manner, giving the business a real edge.
It’s exciting to be going beyond bookkeeping and helping businesses grow and develop in this space!
When your clients use integrated apps, does it make your work as a bookkeeper easier? How?
Yes! The obvious is that it’s a major time saver. Not having to double handle data gives mega efficiency gains. For example when an on account sale is raised in Vend, this automatically updates the debtors ledger in Xero.
Likewise when a payment is made in Vend against this account, the new balance is reflected in Xero. This means a business owner can TRUST their data – rather than running two systems or relying on manual updating / data entry. Once again it’s a major win in terms of time saving, cost saving and increased timeliness and accuracy.
What are your top 5 tips for consulting with small businesses?
1. Build strong relationships through clear and timely communication, delivering on your promises and giving superb service.
2. Don’t be afraid to ask important questions. Is there anything you’re struggling with in your business? Are there areas you need extra help? What’s on the roadmap for your business?
3. Listen to your client. Rather than falling in love with your own voice, listen to what your client is saying, both in the plain and underlying messages.
4. Don’t be afraid of not having all the answers. You don’t need to be omniscient. If you don’t know the answer admit it “I can’t answer that question with 100% confidence, however I’ll find the answer and get back to you tomorrow”
5. Follow through. If you say you’ll do something for a client, then do it. If you can’t, then communicate in a clear and timely manner. Simple follow through is key to building trust in the consulting relationship.
About Tara Benedict
A former retailer (and unabashed nerd) who daydreamed about integrated POS software, Tara now delightedly recruits, promotes, and enables Vend's wonderful channel of add-ons and partners. An ardent sharer of Vend news and events, connect with Tara on Twitter, LinkedIn or Google+ and never miss an opportunity to meet up with the affable Vend team.