Why is it harder to scale and grow professional services businesses organically compared to a software business?

Advocating Professional Services Excellence

“Starting a Professional Services company is easy, but scaling it is hard. Growth stalls at a certain point even when great services are offered. There’s a reason behind this which you need to understand and address. If the business is not scaling, then it is at risk of eroding in value and no leader wants that.”

-Matt Lentzner, CEO, Bizinta and SaaS Industry Expert

Quick Reads:
Self-Learning Quiz - How Good Is Your Invoicing? No email required (2 minutes)
Q&A with Matt Lentzner, CEO, Bizinta (1 minute)
Software Advice FrontRunner for Time and Expense Software (1 minute)

Is Your Invoicing Efficient? Assess Yourself  - It Takes 2 Minutes.

This short assessment will measure how efficient your invoicing process is - having a streamlined invoicing process is a key fundamental in scaling your business No email required - just answer three questions and click submit for instant feedback. Take the Quiz Now.

Even if your company invoicing involves customization and approval reviews, it should all happen quickly and correctly each month.

Featured Q&A With Matt Lentzner

Question: Matt, why is it harder to scale and grow professional services businesses organically compared to say a software business?

Answer: Well software businesses are more difficult to start - while the barrier to entry is lower than it has ever been it’s still expensive to build and launch good software, create a business around it, and have satisfied customers - but once you’re there, the momentum picks up and the margins can be great so profits can support new innovation and customer support.

In contrast to that, it is easy to start a professional services business - the barrier to entry is lower compared to product companies. Typically, one or more experts start it. Then demand grows. They may get to a staff of ten or fifteen serving several clients. At this point they are typically still using spreadsheets and simple, individual tools for things like time-keeping and reporting. Their back-office and mid-office operating model is still very manual. And now, at this size point they may see demand for their services increase so they grow to a staff of twenty. When that happens, those manual processes using separate tools like spreadsheets become cumbersome to manage - they take a lot of time. That time would be better spent on clients and gaining new business. The more manual your processes and individual tools, the slower things get as you grow. QuickBooks is great for bookkeeping, but you need to elevate your other tools and processes around time-keeping, invoice customization, and reporting.

The way to fix this so you are prepared to take on new business and grow is to put in an easy to use integrated and automated toolset that can simplify your operating model and work with your QuickBooks. For example, it should take your time-keeping, calculate each invoice for each client and make it easy to approve and send them so you receive payments quickly. It should use all your time-keeping, financial, and consultant utilization data to give you instant reports on each client and each consultant so at any given point you can quickly make decisions about adding new talent or onboarding new clients.

If you look at the companies succeeding in the professional services industry, the ones  that are doing well and loved by their clients, you’ll see they improved areas of their operations, which saves them time and helps them become more profitable.

If growth is your aim then examine and fix your operating model using the right tools that will enable you to scale by giving you the breathing room to focus on your business, not on tracking, reporting, and invoicing - let technology do those things for you.

If you want to learn more, I’ll be speaking and writing on the topic and will share in the future. Essentially, the nugget of wisdom to take away here is - services company leaders have to make sure your operations are prepared to scale and handle growth. If you have questions about this, message me directly on LinkedIn.

A Software Advice FrontRunner for Time & Expense Software

While Bizinta offers a broad set of integrated web based applications for Professional Services companies, the company was recently named a FrontRunner for its  Time and Expense software by Software Advice. FrontRunners is designed to help small businesses evaluate which software products may be right for them.

“Bizinta software works hard to help professional services companies. Our customers increase profitability and grow. Customers report that Bizinta enables them to  increase their annual profit by an average 7 percentage points, and invoice and receive payments up to 75% faster than before. Our unified Time and Expense software combined with our reporting and other applications is behind those great outcomes,” said Bizinta CEO Matt Lentzner. “We are honored to be a Software Advice FrontRunner as it is based on how our users rate us.”

FrontRunners is published on Software Advice, the leading online service for businesses navigating the software selection process. FrontRunners evaluates verified end-user reviews and product data, positioning the top scoring products based on Usability and Customer Satisfaction ratings for small businesses. Check out FrontRunners for Time & Expense software.

FrontRunners constitute the subjective opinions of individual end-user reviews, ratings, and data applied against a documented methodology; they neither represent the views of, nor constitute an endorsement by, Software Advice or its affiliates.

About Bizinta

Bizinta is a leading provider of SaaS solutions focused on SMB Professional Services companies across all industries. Our SaaS solution makes it easy for customers to grow by streamlining many vital routine processes and to make informed decisions using real-time reports.

Contact us at: insights@bizinta.com