Getting started

Getting started

What is The Gap?

The Gap is a web-based portal for accounting and bookkeeping firms, enabling them to market, sell and deliver a broad spectrum of Business Development and Advisory services to the small business community. Our offering spans four key areas: education, content, marketing, and software to enable efficient delivery of value-add services to accelerate small business success.

Your App bar

The small violet toolbar in the top right-hand corner is your App bar.

  1. Use the Search  icon to search for documents.
  2. Under the question mark  icon:
    1. Help Articles: access the knowledge base (you made it!).
    2. The Gap Community.
    3. Contact Support: reach out for support here.
    4. Getting Started: a list of videos to help you get started with The Gap.
  3. Under the cog  icon: access your personal settings, email signature, and multi-factor authentication settings in My profile. Admin users can also access:
    1. Firm Settings: access your personal profile and update your user settings such as email greeting, disclaimer and signature. You can also manage the FYI integration connection.
    2. Manage Users: add, archive and send MFA setup requests to your firm users.
    3. Services & Pricing: manage your service names, descriptions, plans, pricing and payment options. These are pulled through to your proposals.
    4. Targets: Set up your business development targets and track them monthly.

The Navigation panel

The left-side column is your navigation panel.

From top to bottom:
  1. Use the Dashboard to access your dashboard, which includes My favourite content and the latest content updates under New and Updated content. Members can also access our Facebook community group.
  2. The Bridges area has all the content you need to market, sell and deliver Business Development services, webinars, seminars and workshops.
  3. The Mindset Tools includes mindset cards and videos.
  4. The Training area has recordings of training sprints and other training resources.
  5. Use the  Marketing content to streamline your firm's marketing.
  6. The  Leadership area contains internal best practice leadership content.
  7. The  Working Files takes you to your working files, where your DraftsCompleted and Template documents are stored, as well as your Inbox for documents submitted by clients and Outbox to check the status of emails sent to the client via the portal.
  8. The  Clients area is where you can view your clients. Portal administrators can add clients manually or sync clients from XPM, and access the Clients archive.
Admin users can also see the following areas:
  1. Firm settings - same as the Firm settings option under the cog on the App bar.
  2.  Services and pricing: manage your service names, descriptions, plans, pricing and payment options. These are pulled through to your proposals.
  3.  BD Targets: Set up your business development targets and track them monthly.
  4.  Manage Users: add, archive and send MFA setup requests to your firm users.

Essential set up

Before getting started with using The Gap, there are essential settings you must set up:
  1. Customise your firm's settings. This information will automatically populate portal documents for all users. For more information, see our Customising firm settings article.
  2. Set up your proposal payment terms. These must be set up prior to drafting any proposals in the portal. For more information, see our Configuring proposal payment terms article.
  3. Add your clients, either by syncing to Xero Practice Manager, uploading a CSV file or manually inputting them. For more information, see our Managing clients and client documents article.
  4. Add your team members as users. For more information, see our Managing firm users article.
  5. Set up your personal settings and multi-factor authentication. For more information, see our Customising your user settings article.

These are the minimum settings that must be set up prior to using the Bridges area.

How to use the portal

The Bridges area

This is a key area where you'll spend most of your time accessing the content to deliver services to clients. We call these services 'bridges' as they bridge the gap between compliance services and those that create enduring value for your clients.

There are over 20 bridges containing everything you need to market, sell and deliver each service. You don't need to offer all of these services; some members obtain a significant ROI using just a few bridges. We recommend starting with the Proactive Onboarding (PO) and Complimentary Client Review (CCR) bridges to systemise your onboarding processes and deliver complimentary meetings  to clients and prospects. From there, most members utilise the Business Planning (BP) and Quarterly Coaching (QC) or Monthly Coaching (MC) bridges before adding additional services to their offering.

For more information, see the Delivering the services article.

The Mindset Tools area

Our Mindset Tools are designed to enhance your understanding of key concepts and models which you can share with your team and clients to reinforce their learning. To reflect the different ways of learning, there are mindset cards which are a visual representation of the concept and mindset videos that explain the concept and demonstrate how you can present them to your team and clients. 

We recommend choosing one mindset to learn each week; watching the video and then practising drawing the mindset on a flipchart. The ability to quickly recall a mindset and share it with clients during a meeting is incredibly powerful. The Mindset Tools area contains folders with mindsets relating to key topics as well as a catalogue containing all of our mindset cards and videos.

For more information, see our article, Using the Mindset Tools area.

Share a new mindset at each team meeting. Leaders should present the first few mindsets, then choose a different team member to present mindsets at future meetings.

The Training area

The  Training  area includes recordings of The Gap training sprints as well as guides and additional training resources.

Live training sprints are held on the third Tuesday of every month; schedule this as a recurring meeting in your calendar and prioritise attending.

A recording is published in the Training area on the Friday following the live training sprint.

The Training area also contains information on how to maximise the ROI you get from The Gap and tips on how to use the portal and content.  For more information, see our article, Using the Training area .

The Marketing area

The Marketing area contains content to develop and support your marketing strategy. The Guide to Marketing Your Accounting Firm helps you understand how to develop an effective marketing strategy and provides an overview of the marketing assets available in The Gap. The Gap integrates with BOMA to help firms fast-track their marketing results and seamlessly market the services, webinars, and seminars available in the portal. For more information, see our article, Using the Marketing area.

The Leadership area

The Leadership area is designed for your firm's leadership team to use internally to ensure you implement best practice in your firm.  In this area, you'll set your Business Development Plan for the year, develop your modern firm organisation structure and job descriptions, implement a performance review process and understand best practice for accounting firms, including delivering the five essential meetings.  For more information, see our article, Using the Leadership area.

The Gap Community

This will link you to our members-only Facebook Community group. Send a request to join and get involved with other members of The Gap community, asking questions and sharing your wins.
For more information, see our article, Our Community group.

Pathways to success

We've identified six pathways our members are likely to take to get started with The Gap. Your Member Success Specialist can help you identify the pathway or pathways most relevant for you. We know the portal can feel overwhelming at first; choosing a pathway helps you maintain focus by picking key content and education resources most suitable for your firm.

The different pathways include:
  1. Best practice process - achieving efficiency gains and setting yourself up for success 
  2. Gaining efficiencies and great onboarding - prospective clients, proposals
  3. Holding effective meetings with existing clients closer to compliance, managing Scope Stretch
  4. Running events/increase marketing (and delivering other Gap bridges)
  5. Business Development services (Business Plan, Cashflow Forecast, Accountability Coaching)
  6. Capability building and continuous professional development

Championing The Gap in your firm

We recommend firms nominate a 'Gap Champion' to aid implementation and change management. They will be the key contact person with your Gap Member Success Specialist and will provide important support and accountability for your team. We've published introduction email templates and PowerPoint presentations for the Gap Champion to use, as well as a guide to being a Gap Champion. For more information, check out our Change management for advisory success article.
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