13 Jun Franchising turned on its head – DoughGetters newest Franchisee speaks out
After 17 years in the corporate world, Johann Soekoe had to start over.
When he stepped down as MD of a chemical company which specialised in water purification for the government, Johann was supposed to go into the private and trade bulk chemicals. Then global COVID pandemic turned the world upside down.
During his highly successful 17 years with the company – which saw him work his way up from Financial Manager to Managing Director – he also completed his studies and became a tax practitioner and licensed Independent Reviewer. On the side he developed an accounting practice for external clients with two staff members dedicated to them. The accounting practice was eventually bought over by the staff when he became the MD of the chemical company.
Fortunately he kept all his registrations if he needed to get back into the accounting industry. The thing is, he didn’t want to.
Today, he is the newest DoughGetters Franchisee… Here (in his own words) is some insights into what he’s learned (so far):
ON BEING PART OF THE FAMILY
I’ve never really been a sole proprietor, so, to be quite honest I am (very pleasantly) surprised by the cohesiveness between all of us, even though we all work remotely. The way the organisation is structured is absolutely superb. You have to think twice when you start an accounting firm on your own today. The industry has changed a lot over the past five years and it would be very difficult for a sole owner to survive with all their values and nerves intact. In that regard then, having the backup and support system of people I can call when something is afoot business-wise, or just for a general chat, is awesome.
Apart from that, and this almost goes without saying – the way DoughGetters portrays accountants and the accounting industry and how we provide our services to our clients, is way, way ahead of any other accounting group.
I mean just look at the competitors at the Xero awards, DoughGetters won Xero Partner of the Year just one year after being named Emerging Firm of the Year by Xero, and this all within the first four years of its existence. To me that says a lot about what DoughGetters is doing and achieving in the accounting market.
ON BEING ON YOUR OWN, BUT NOT
In so many businesses the traditional franchising format is for franchisors to sell a business and then expecting the franchisee to just go it alone from there.
This is not the case with DoughGetters. They, and I mean ‘they’ as in the franchisor and all franchisees stand together when a new entrant arrives. From assisting me with setting up all the systems, to sourcing clients as well as helping with mundane tasks and checking in on general ‘well-being’ – it has been an amazing experience.
As a DoughGetters franchisee, there are always opportunities to express your view, while changes in systems are explained in detail. And, out of the blue you will receive a call for a lunch date. In my experience, DoughGetters goes far and beyond of what their Franchisor License requires them to.
ON CLOUD-BASED ACCOUNTING SYSTEMS
Coming back into accounting after some time away I was genuinely astonished to see what kind of apps (and how many) there are these days out there to do accounting. The implementation of the core accounting apps such as, Xero, SimplePay, Dext and Syft is amazing – a true digital, cloud-based ecosystem whereby the client takes responsibility for his ‘paperwork’ but receives the greatest benefit of live-data.
So many accountants these days claim to be going paperless but as soon as their client’s work needs to be done everybody is running around with stacks of files. With DoughGetters’ digital ecosystem, we can operate truly paperless.
In addition, we as remote-working accountants don’t have to work through those dreaded client files. The learning curve was quite steep for me. Or perhaps it was more the mental adjustment – one has to get your mind around how everything is integrate-able, but after one or two integrations under your belt you will get the hang of it.
You really don’t have to be an IT genius to handle apps, just apply some brain power or a willing partner and you’ll get it done. The apps that are used together with the ecosystems that are developed for each clients, you really can go paperless – totally.
ON WORKING REMOTELY
I can’t wait to do all the fun stuff: Going on holiday to wherever, whenever and for what amount of time – that is now possible. The term ‘workcation’ is now a real thing. As long as you have the internet you have an office address!