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Triage - What Do You Do

Level 11

A zillion Client Portal uploads of both new returns and additional information.

A zillion drop offs.

A zillion meetings.

And more than a zillion emails each day.

I keep going back to returns I can get out the door to boost my ego (one more done).  But the pile of unstarted keeps growing.

I either need less clients, a better system, staff (can't find), or retirement.

3 Comments 3
Level 15

That's what is nice about this place.  Whenever you are feeling overwhelmed just stop in and find out you are not alone.  As a side note, the one thing that irritates me most are those Johnny Cash clients ---------- bring your stuff in once you have all of it put together.  One piece at a time sounds funny in a song, not so much in a tax practice.

Slava Ukraini!
Level 15
Level 15

OMG, this describes my office exactly, I just cant make any headway with all the mail-ins, drop offs and portal uploads!

Im touching everything way too many times, something is always missing, shove it to the side, try another one, missing something, shove it over, try another one.   OMG please let me just get something out the door!

I love my in person appointments, all questions answered, most missing items they can find on their phones, laptops or calling home and making a kid or spouse find it right on the spot!

Level 13

If it's any consolation, I haven't found a system that I'm super happy with either.  With a varied client base I just kind of roll with the punches.

I try to have certain days per week for certain tasks.  One day may be client meetings (today for example, I'm open until my 3:30 shows up so figured I'd get caught up on the forums and some emails).  The next day may be zero client meetings but working on mail-ins.  Another day might be printing out all of the uploaded docs (yes, you can make fun of me for this but I LIKE PAPER and have a ton of scratch paper that I can print on the back of!  I can put it in whatever order I want, make tick marks on it, even do math on it for things like mixed-use mortgages.)  Another day with my review hat on.  Another day for clearing open items and (hopefully) finalizing returns.  This process really only works for weeks that have at least 12 days in them (thus the "not super happy" part).

Set expectations.  I'm telling my drop-offs today that I'm working on about a 3-week backlog so they might not hear from me for a while.  At this point I still expect to get things coming in now out by 4/18.  Shortly that expectation will change to "I'll take a look when I have a chance but we'll likely need to file an extension this year, I'll let you know if you need to make a payment by 4/18."  Then the "My 4/18 pipeline is already full, here's cut/paste instructions on how to file an extension on your own with IRS DirectPay.