Latest News

What’s New With HiLivePro

  • Home

Developments in technology are changing our everyday lives. The economy and the ways we do business have been transformed. Financial professionals are seeing innovations in technology change client demands, employment practices, and business operations. CPAs aren’t immune to the impacts. We know you’re feeling the pressure, and we’re here to help you keep pace with the speed of change.

You’re not alone

Keeping up with the newest tech and consumer demands is not as easy for every CPA, especially if you’re a solo practitioner or a small firm. Attracting new clients, staying up-to-date with the software, optimizing for mobile devices, and managing cash flows and late payments can all become overwhelming. Many CPAs admit to having a very hard time keeping up with large firms and their ability to adapt to the rapid changes in technology, market trends, and client expectations. According to a recent survey by IFAC Global SMP, a couple of the most difficult challenges for small and mid-sized accounting practices are:
• Technology developments (38 percent)
• Pressure to lower fees (48 percent)

What’s Changing

One of the most challenging technology developments for solo CPA is the increased competition from online tax services. These services often provide more convenient communication platforms for clients and lower rates. This drives at the second, and larger, issue expressed in the survey: Pressure to lower fees. Today, along with managing and operating daily business operations, CPAs are expected to provide the same conveniences and 24/7 access that consumers have become accustomed to through the use of online portals and other digital tools.

“As new tools augment our profession and streamline certain tasks, accountants will not only have to embrace new ways of working but take on expanded roles—as data analysts and other specialists,” said Deloitte CEO Cathy Engelbart, in Accounting Today. “Being a solo CPA or sole proprietor now means not only being a great CPA, but also requires the flexibility to adopt new systems and the analytical skills necessary to optimize performance.”

Simple solutions

If you’re one of the CPAs experiencing pressure to lower prices, then a good first step is to enhance the services you provide with technology that adds value for your clients. There are tools designed specifically for small to mid-size CPA firms that can improve your clients’ experience, increase your own productivity, and help even the playing field with larger firms.
Some areas prime for optimization are client communications and giving your clients options to easily pay you with credit, debit, or electronic checks online or in your office. Let’s dive into some of the opportunities advances in financial and business technology provide:

Virtual Assistant Solutions

Appointment Scheduling: Virtual Assistant
Schedule appointments with ease with HiLivePro virtual assistants

We’re biased, but it’s because we’ve witnessed first-hand how much a virtual assistant can help solo and small CPA firms. Not only do virtual assistants field incoming calls and schedule appointments, but they can also prepare documents, accept payments over the phone, and even scan and forward mail. With the help of an HiLivePro virtual assistant for the financial industry, you can keep your sights on the bigger picture items while the tedious tasks that eat up your day get taken care of by experienced professionals.

Many Officense clients can attest to seeing results almost instantly. One particular financial advisor has seen conversion rates skyrocket since adding HiLivePro virtual assistants to her intake process. While previously clients would leave a voicemail and often wait several days for a response, now HiLivePro’s team of assistants will answer live calls and book consultations on the spot. The Baltimore based firm has seen conversion rates for new callers climb from around 35% to nearly double in their first month using an HiLivePro live answer receptionist.

We know what you are thinking; scheduling and live answer are great, but how will this integrate with my lead tracking software and how do I catch these new leads before they call? Beyond phone answering services, HiLivePro back office support extends to services such as data entry, CRM management, and 24/7 live web chat. With customizable live chat services, our agents will respond to your website visitors through instant web chat, turning them from window shoppers to clients in no time. Many CPAs request that customer information is entered directly into a CRM or sales funnel when calls are received. We’ll not only enter customer data but can also assist with the optimization of CRM fields and retargeting strategies, based on our over 10 years’ experience in the industry.

The resources and amenities provided by HiLivePro are what every CPA needs to beat the competition and reach their potential.

Officense is happy to announce our partnership with the Maryland State Bar Association (MSBA).

Maryland State Bar Association Member Exclusive

MSBA members will receive exclusive discounts on helpful resources for your practice. As a result of the partnership, we will provide a 10% discount on all service packages.

What Officense Has to Offer Your Practice

Officense provides a wide range of packages including administrative support, back office services, office space. Also, our professional address, private deposition/video conference rooms, and furnished meeting space will add to your practices credibility and present a professional image reflective of your firm.  The best part about Officense is that our A-La-Carte pricing options mean pay for only what you use.  Whether your firm is large or small, Officense has the tools to help create and run a successful practice. 

   

The Officense Difference

       Officense has been helping legal professionals since 2006. With over ten years of experience in the legal industry, we know the challenges of running a practice, and have proven methods to help you run an efficient law firm.  Our packages and phone answering service is customized specifically for the legal community and we deploy a team of highly trained, locally based Executive Assistants to help you with any task that may arise. Our assistants are prepared to answer calls and forward calls directly to you after being screened. At the office, we can provide an array of services like notary services, outbound calling, and lead tracking.

    Full-service private offices are also available when you need them. MSBA member can choose to have a permanent office or use the office on an as-needed basis. WiFi, kitchen use, coffee, tea, water, and utilities are always free of charge.

Please visit the MSBA site to learn about additional benefits your membership provides, as well as our home page for pricing.

https://www.officense.com/msba-member-discounts/

https://www.msba.org/member-discounts/

                  “The Office that Makes Sense”
Startup Phone Services and Marketing

A MORE SCIENTIFIC APPROACH TO SMALL BUSINESS MARKETING:

For years small businesses have been unable to compete with big budget marketing campaigns from larger competitors. Today however, small companies can easily use the abundance free data tools to take advantage of local and niche targets through better segmenting and targeted promotion. Below are some ideas on how to integrate freely accessible data to create a more numbers driven marketing plan for your company.

COMMON MISTAKES:
You may think of marketing and advertising in dated, creativity focused, Mad Men–esque terms. Today, no matter how creative a catch phrase or slogan, it will be worthless without the necessary insights to reach an audience which is growing ever more segmented by the year. While messaging is still important, it is no longer the driver it once was and must always be backed up by clear demographics and solid audience data.

As a small business, you may think there is no way to keep track of all this customer information and might feel you have no time to collect all the information that is necessary to shape your marketing campaign. Many small business owners are simple overwhelmed with the number of available advertising option today, and unable to determine whether to spend valuable dollars on tv, radio, networking, or online ads.

The good news is you do not need to undertake the task alone.

THE HiLivePro SOLUTION:
No, you can’t afford to go out and hire a professional marketing consultant, but what you can do is use HiLivePro. There are many ways to track data and become more informed through the administrative services offered by HiLivePro and all are affordable to any small business owner.
Take a look at some of the ways we can better inform your marketing decisions through our phone and lead tracking processes:

• Have our staff compile a marketing log with all sources of new business inquiries.
• Have inbound calls integrated with your CRM system and customer data input for each caller.
• Have staff survey customers on each call with direct questions about their experience, background, or specific product interest.
• Collect inbound call lead’s email addresses to target through an email marketing campaign.
• Have our staff track customer zip codes and area codes so you can target new business using geographic data.

HOW TO BEGIN:
The easiest way to begin focusing your marketing efforts and targeting customers is by simply collecting contact information. Maybe you are currently answering your own phones and forget to collect all information for every call. Instead, have our executive assistants answer your calls to ensure every bit of information is collected. This phone, email, and address information can easily be converted into a direct mail or email campaign down the road.

With the proper support and help from Officense you will be collecting the right information and can use this data to inform your marketing decisions. No longer will you be unable to compete with larger companies and have to depend on your gut when deciding how to advertise. Instead you will know exactly who your customers are, where they live, what they do for a living, and what first attracted them to your business.

Stop wasting time and money on ads that reach the wrong audience! Call HiLivePro today and start making smarter business decisions (410-814-7600)!

THE 2017 BALTIMORE RUNNING FESTIVAL: FINISH LINE MOVES TO THE INNER HARBOR

Last weekend runners and supporters of the 17th annual Baltimore Running Festival flooded the streets of Downtown Baltimore. The Baltimore Sun article talks about the big change that was made to the course this year. Race organizers “rerouted the race’s endpoint from the parking lot between M&T Bank Stadium and Camden Yards to Pratt Street, the Inner Harbor not far off”. The finish line change developed by borrowing a motto from the runners themselves, “It’s not how you start that matters. It’s how you finish”.

IMPACT OF THE INNER HARBOR

The Sun describes the feel of the new finish line on the Inner Harbor. “After as many as 26.2 miles of pounding pavement and perfect weather, it was a special kind of runner’s high to see glimmering water within walking distance”. One Baltimore raised runner describes the change as making the race more about the city. She explains, “I love Baltimore and I feel like it’s a fun thing that brings everybody out. This is Baltimore-centric.” The simple change of moving the finish line to the Inner Harbor had a lasting impact. Both runners and viewers felt the Baltimore pride.

SUPPORTING BALTIMORE BUSINESS

As a business located on the Inner Harbor, we too find pride in being Baltimore-centric. At HiLivePro, we support local Baltimore by providing customized solutions for any sized business. We offer executive assistants to answer your calls, handle your mail, greet your clients, follow up with leads, schedule appointments, and much more. Give us a call at (410) 814-7600 to meet your new office staff in the center of Charm City!

Solo Summit

Officense Sponsors MSBA Solo Summit

MSBA Solo Summit

On November 10th, our parent company Officense is going to be at the MSBA’s Solo Summit. We are a proud supporter of the event this year. Our table will be set up during the lunch session of the Summit. Stop by our table to learn all the way Officense can help you as a solo practitioner of the law.

Our Services

For example, we offer a la carte office and conference spaces to our attorney clients. Our services are perfect for those of you starting your solo firm. You have the best of both worlds: low overhead for space and professional office space only when you need it. We also offer a wide variety of reception services, some are even included at no cost to you! Just imagine, you could have a real person, answering your important call and greeting your client even when you are out of the office. Running a solo firm can be a difficult journey, but not with Officense.

All our plans are crafted to fit your budget and your needs. Your services can grow as your firm grows. To attend the Solo Summit, register for your seat here. Don’t forget to stop by and see us during the break.

For more information about Officense services for attorneys visit: Officense Legal Professionals Page

What is a Virtual Assistant?

With advances in technology, it is now becoming more popular to use a virtual assistant. But, what exactly is a virtual assistant? The article “What is Your Definition of a Digital Work Space?” searched to find out.

WHAT IS A VIRTUAL ASSISTANT or VIRTUAL WORK SPACE?

In the article, they explain that “emerging technologies now make it possible to deliver the infrastructure needed to enable employees to work securely and productively from home, the office, or on the road”. They believe this is because “new technologies are unlocking new possibilities”. But, what is it like to use a virtual office? How efficient is it? To see how virtual-office-users answer our question, they asked the attendees at its EUC Insights 2017 Conference: “What is your definition of a digital work space?”.

HERE ARE A FEW OF THEIR RESPONSES:

“A digital work space is the virtual equivalent of a physical workplace that allows users to work from anywhere, potentially increasing productivity and changing how we see optimal work environments”

“My definition of a digital work space is all of the technological means required to allow me to reach people for collaborative work”

“A digital work space provides all the devices and tools needed to get the job done. Basically, it’s a ‘single pane of glass’ to provide me with everything I need such as browser email, voice, etc.”

Basically “it’s clear that the concepts of mobility, flexibility, and productivity are universally understood to be key attributes”. A virtual work space needs to “deliver everything an individual employee needs to be productive”.

THE WORLD OF THE VIRTUAL OFFICE

The article, “What You Need to Know About the Rise of the Digital, Global, Virtual Office”, explains “it’s been predicted that by 2020, more than half of employees will work remotely”. But, they also talk about some of the problems that may arise when companies start to use a virtual work space. Dr. Stagl, a virtual office expert, explains that “one of the first problems that most teams have when members start working remotely is a drop in the quality of communication”. He continues, “The first thing that poor communication will impact is your production- both efficiency and quality drop when teammates fail to communicate details”. This is a problem that I would expect to come from working in a separate space that your coworkers. But since working virtually is flourishing, how is this being remedied?

The best way to prevent the drop in communication is to “find the best collaboration software for your company’s needs”. By “finding a tool that solves multiple communication, collaboration, and documentation challenges will prevent the possibility of compatibility failures”. This is a solution to maintain the level of communication with your co-workers, when using a virtual work space.

COLLABORATION TOOLS FOR YOUR COMPANY

Finding an amazing collaboration tool to help you and your coworkers communicate can be priceless for your business. At HiLivePro, we give you virtual communications solutions to make working remotely work for you. There are virtual assistants and live receptionists to answer your calls and handle your administrative needs. We give you a professional face, help you communicate with clients, and provide you with the tools to work remotely.

HiLivePro offers many services that can help your virtual business run smoothly. Virtual phone services with virtual office assistants to handle your calls, set appointments and follow up with leads. We also provide a business mailing address and virtual address mail forwarding. We give you the tools and technology to increase productivity and communication, all at an affordable price.

Give HiLivePro a call at (410) 814-7600 to find your live answered phone solution, today!

phone answering service

If you would have told someone 20 years ago, that you could handle work calls, manage your office, and save your business money, all from the golf course, they would have called you crazy. They might remind you that you were forgetting about putting on a suit, struggling through the commute, briefing your secretary on your schedule, and sitting behind your phone waiting for calls. Fortunately, they’d be wrong. In 2017 work is happening everywhere and anywhere thorugh the use of phone answering services, and employers and employees are loving it.

More and more, the brick and mortar office of the past is adding up to be a poor decision in the current fast paced, technology driven business world. The trend line is clear. Offices are falling by the wayside and new services are replacing them. Research from Global Workplace Analytics reports that work being performed out of an office and in nontraditional spaces has increased 103% among non-self-employed workers since 2005. The reasons behind this trend are easy to see. The costs of a traditional office are simply too much for some small businesses or start-ups and increasingly, entrepreneurs are rejecting these unnecessary expenses for more efficient solutions. Besides costing less, the advantages of being virtually connected to your work through a phone answering service are higher productivity and general job satisfaction. Anyone would be happier taking a work call while relaxing on the couch rather than in an office!

However, while the physical idea of the office is changing, the implications and thought process behind the word are not. People are interactive and social beings and still need a way to communicate face to face comfortably and efficiently. For this reason, the traditional office is dead but the virutal asistant, phone answering service, and remote administration aid are all alive and well. Working remotely and using technology doesn’t eliminate a need to present a professional office image occasionally, but it does make it foolish to pay for a traditional space year-round, 24 hours a day, and go through expensive staff training.

Maybe we’re a little ahead of our time here at HiLivePro, offering creative alternatives to the traditional office for nearly 10 years. But it’s like Shel Silverstein said, “If you’re behind the times, they won’t notice you. If you’re right in tune with them, you’re no better than they are, so they won’t care much for you. Be just a little ahead of them.”

Work From Home

Does Working from Home Work for You?

The journey towards our current 40-hour work week started in 1866, when the American Labor Union petitioned the federal government to create an eight-hour workday (Lebowitz, 2015). Until it became a professional norm in 1940, Labor Unions continued to push for institutionalizing the 40-hour work week. Most Americans have been following this set work week schedule for over 75 years, but many professionals still work more than 40 hours (Lebowitz, 2015).

A PERFORMANCE BASED WORK WEEK

What is a healthy and productive balance of work hours in the work week? Evidence suggests that longer hours over a period of time equals lower productivity, but that periodic bursts of longer hours can improve a worker’s performance (Joseph and Yarrow, 2015). An Article published by The Independent, highlighted a Swedish study and a Stanford University study, which both showed data supported the theory that shorter work hours leads to increased productivity and output (Greenfield, 2016). Wouldn’t it be nice to work less, but still meet your goals?

It’s time for American professionals and companies to embrace this trend. Our Office supports the new short work week by offering a flexible office environment. Perhaps you or your employees are more productive between the hours of 2 AM to 5 AM or 10 PM to 1 AM. Normal office settings may not allow you the freedom to work when and for however long you will be productive.

With HiLivePro, break free from the traditional office with our unique live answered phone service which will keep you connected even when at home. If your business operates on non-traditional hours or your employees work five-hour days, look to HiLivePro for your business solution.

HiLivePro Phone Services

Appointment Scheduling Phone Services

Virtual Workspace with HiLivePro

With advances in technology, it is now becoming more popular to use a virtual work space. But, what exactly is a virtual work space? The article “What is Your Definition of a Digital Work Space?” searched to find out.

WHAT IS A VIRTUAL WORK SPACE?

In the article, they explain that “emerging technologies now make it possible to deliver the infrastructure needed to enable employees to work securely and productively from home, the office, or on the road”. They believe this is because “new technologies are unlocking new possibilities”. But, what is it like to use a virtual office? How efficient is it? To see how virtual-office-users answer our question, they asked the attendees at its EUC Insights 2017 Conference: “What is your definition of a digital work space?”.

HERE ARE A FEW OF THEIR RESPONSES:

“A digital work space is the virtual equivalent of a physical workplace that allows users to work from anywhere, potentially increasing productivity and changing how we see optimal work environments”

“My definition of a digital work space is all of the technological means required to allow me to reach people for collaborative work”

“A digital work space provides all the devices and tools needed to get the job done. Basically, it’s a ‘single pane of glass’ to provide me with everything I need such as browser email, voice, etc.”

Basically “it’s clear that the concepts of mobility, flexibility, and productivity are universally understood to be key attributes”. A virtual work space needs to “deliver everything an individual employee needs to be productive”.

THE WORLD OF THE VIRTUAL OFFICE and PHONE ANSWERING SERVICES

The article, “What You Need to Know About the Rise of the Digital, Global, Virtual Office”, explains “it’s been predicted that by 2020, more than half of employees will work remotely”. But, they also talk about some of the problems that may arise when companies start to use a virtual work space. Dr. Stagl, a virtual office expert, explains that “one of the first problems that most teams have when members start working remotely is a drop in the quality of communication”. He continues, “The first thing that poor communication will impact is your production- both efficiency and quality drop when teammates fail to communicate details”. This is a problem that I would expect to come from working in a separate space that your coworkers. But since working virtually is flourishing, how is this being remedied?

The best way to prevent the drop in communication is to “find the best collaboration software for your company’s needs”. By “finding a tool that solves multiple communication, collaboration, and documentation challenges will prevent the possibility of compatibility failures”. This is a solution to maintain the level of communication with your co-workers, when using a virtual work space.

COLLABORATION TOOLS FOR YOUR COMPANY

Finding an amazing collaboration tool to help you and your coworkers communicate can be priceless for your business. At Officense, we give you virtual office solutions to make working remotely work for you. There are virtual office assistants and live receptionists to answer your calls and handle your administrative needs. We give you a professional face, help you communicate with clients, and provide you with the tools to work remotely.

HiLivePro offers many services that can help your virtual business run smoothly. Virtual phone services with virtual office assistants to handle your calls, set appointments and follow up with leads. We give you the tools and technology to increase productivity and communication, all at an affordable price. So, give HiLivePro a call at (410) 814-7600 to find your virtual office solution, today!

Appointment Scheduling: Virtual Assistant

Everyone at some point has trouble managing their time. Time is a limited commodity and it is stressed to the max in many business settings. Doctors, Lawyers, Financial Planners, Contractors and even CEOs can feel the strain of poor time management affect in their businesses and performance at work.

Late Arrivals

For example, if a doctor runs overtime with a patient at 8 AM, then he’s late for all his other appointments or playing catch up because of not keeping to the schedule. Being late, running over, or forgetting appointment is extremely costly to businesses in every industry. According to a survey by CareerBuilder in 2017, 25% of employees are late at least once a month and 16% are tardy more than once a month to work. Being late effects everyone, no business is immune to this phenomenon. Wouldn’t it be great if there was a scheduling solution to help make yourself on time as a business owner?

HiLivePro has your time management solution at the ready with HiLivePro’s appointment scheduling professionals. Our college educated assistants will use your shared calendar to set appointments for your business, while collecting a detailed set of information for you to better asset your clients’ needs before appointment take place. We use intuitive thought to anticipate your customers’ needs and what is important to your business. That’s the added value of HiLivePro, we can even classify your appointments for more complex scheduling. Don’t let disorganization affect your business. Have HiLivePro keep you on track for business success! Call 410-814-7600 to find out more.

About

Contact Us

410-814-7600

info@officense.com

300 E. Lombard St. Suite 840

Baltimore, MD 21202