While some accounting firms are building better workplaces by surveying their employees, others are doing it by sending information back the other way.
Keeping staff in the loop about what’s going on in the firm helps them feel more engaged and more involved in its success.
Jacksonville, Fla., Best Firm to Work For Ennis Pellum, for instance, has an “Open Book” philosophy when it comes to its 32 staff: “We take great care to communicate and involve our people in our goals and plans, how we'll get there, progress updates, and so on,” the firm reported, “and we encourage everyone to share ideas on improvements and opportunities.”
Information shared can range from a firm’s current workload and financial results to its future strategy. San Antonio-based Best Firm ATKG shares key information like its financials, client ranking, the progress it has made and the challenges it faces with its 26 employees.
Best Firm to Work For Anders CPAs uses a number of different avenues of communication to reach its 137 staff in St. Louis. “Our SharePoint blog and announcements provide the opportunity for the managing partner and others throughout the firm to share firm information such as new programs, achievements, and volunteer opportunities,” the firm said. It also holds three firm meetings every year, in which leadership shares information about the firm, including financial updates, niche and business updates, and employee achievements.
And at Johnston, Pa.-based Barnes Saly & Co., the Best Firm gets its 16 staff together every Monday at 8:30 for a weekly staff meeting “to keep communication open between management and all levels of staff.” The firm’s partners go over the agenda, and everyone on the staff shares what they will be working on for the week, as well as any concerns they may have and any new ideas for consideration.
Obviously, some information should not be shared – salaries, for instance – and not everyone will be comfortable making their firm’s financial details public, but that still leaves plenty of areas in which to be more transparent, and the more you let staff see, the more they’ll feel that they’re on the inside looking out, and not on the outside looking in.
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