Steady growth, coupled with the needs of a fully remote team, required these accounting pros to establish efficiencies around client work or risk losing productivity and the opportunity to scale.
When Susie Schade recognized that small to midsized businesses didn’t have the support they needed for accounting software implementations and managing their daily finances, she knew she could help fill that void. Thus, Vector Business Solutions was born.
The fully remote team provides QuickBooks® and NetSuite consulting and outsourced accounting services to companies nationwide. They deliver streamlined financial processes and, ultimately, peace of mind.
Since she founded it in 2007, Susie’s business has steadily grown and now boasts a team of 12 dedicated finance professionals.
About a decade into business ownership, Susie had an established client base but recognized that she needed to focus on smoothing out internal operations — and that the right software platform could be the answer.
But Vector had already gone through several different work management platforms. They attempted to use Amicus Premium, a legal case management solution, to manage clients and jobs. Still, the team needed more robust capabilities than it offered. And that seemed to be the problem over and over with various systems.
“We needed resource management, a client portfolio and a better sense of our workload,” Susie recalls. “At the time, we couldn’t see how full our plates were, so it was difficult to determine whether the team was being over- or underutilized. I was always worried that somewhere along the way, we were going to miss a commitment with too many clients, too many different schedules and too many team members.”
Even with software that was supposed to make them more efficient, Susie’s leadership team spent about eight hours per week on unnecessary manual work: figuring out who was working on what, who was available to take on more work and who was overbooked. Resource management became a high priority.
“Each of our clients has a unique schedule for all our different service offerings,” Susie said. “We needed a platform that would help us manage that better.”
She began an extensive search to address the business’s pain points, researching PSA, CRM, time-tracking and project management solutions. Her list consisted of 40 potential tools. But there was something that stood out about one of them.
Susie was intrigued by how all-encompassing Accelo seemed to be.
“There are a lot of project management and ticketing systems out there, but I couldn’t find a single one other than Accelo that handles both retainers and projects in one,” Susie says. “Our team members work on both one-time and recurring work, so we desperately needed to be able to track where their time was going for each type of contract.”
Implementation went smoothly, and Susie was immediately optimistic about the potential the platform afforded her growing business.
“I felt really good about it,” she explains. “Accelo covers a broad set of features that are 100% tightly integrated. I can see what’s going on with a client, their prospective work and what’s already been done — all in one place.”
Vector has been with Accelo since 2019, and in the three years since, the firm's leaders have cut their admin time in half, gaining back 200 hours per year that they now devote to billable work.
Not only has this shift in priorities upped Vector’s revenue, but the need for less administrative oversight has reduced its overhead by 10%.
Another major area in which Vector has seen improvement is billing. Because Accelo automatically generates detailed invoices, Susie says they never get questioned about an amount due.
Vector’s clients are happy because of the high-quality service they receive in a timely fashion. The team can keep that up because they use templates to standardize project completion. Plus, with Accelo, Susie says prospects become clients much faster than they used to. That’s because it’s so easy to build a new project plan after consulting with a client — it’s often done in under an hour.
Her old worries about missing a deadline or overlooking a deliverable are long gone.
“I’m at ease with the level of control we have,” Susie points out. “Accelo ensures that we’re performing all the services we are contracted to do while staying on schedule.”
Susie and her powerhouse team are cruising through this year of high inflation and economic uncertainty with Accelo by their side.
Like many businesses, Vector has made recent changes to its pricing structure. Using Accelo’s Divisions feature, Susie says they’re starting to manage different pricing models for different types of clients.
She sees steady growth in her business’s future, despite the global challenges of late, thanks to its ongoing relationship with Accelo.
Accelo helps us make good on our commitments to our clients, saves us time, and gives us visibility into resource utilization. Plus, the platform is so CLEAN!
Susie Schade, Founder