‘If you’re having a hard time with something, it’s probably because it’s not automated.’ Case Study: Marissa Stillwell

March 7, 2022

‘If you’re having a hard time with something, it’s probably because it’s not automated.’ Case Study: Marissa Stillwell

Marissa is the Director of Client Accounting Services at Bookkeep, an accounting automation tool that posts daily financial summaries for all your sales channels and reconciles your payment deposits to QuickBooks Online or Xero. They’re integrated with the largest e-commerce platforms such as Square, Shopify, Amazon Seller, Stripe and many more. They also offer accounting and bookkeeping services to their clients, using the latest accounting automation technologies to optimise for time and quality.  

Outside of work Marissa is a mother, a blue belt in BJJ and currently studying for her CMA certificate.

What advice would you give to new bookkeepers?

If you have a passion for business, go for it! It’s never too late to start a career, even if like me, it’s not something you studied in college. I was fortunate enough to learn from the qualified accountants I worked with throughout the years.

My advice would be to choose a business field that you’re interested in which really helps with breaking through the repetitiveness of bookkeeping and accounting. Take advantage of free resources like webinars, blogs and tutorials. Always focus on upskilling, become a Quickbooks Pro Advisor, study for a CMA, these qualifications help with building credibility and increasing the value in your services


Great advice! Why is automation so important for Accountants and Bookkeepers?

Firstly, I’d like to address one of the biggest misconceptions I’ve found when listening to accountants and bookkeeping professionals talk about automation. Automation isn’t here to replace us! Things still need to be reviewed, transactions still need to be matched.

There are so many important things you can miss out on because you’re overwhelmed with manual data entry. You’d be missing out on the opportunity to grow your business by increasing your time capacity. You can take on new clients as well as increasing the services you offer, which will only drive your value up!

If you’re having a hard time with something, it’s probably because it’s not automated.

We couldn’t agree more! How did you hear about LiveFlow?

For context, I had a client who was unhappy with the reporting we did for them and no matter how many hours we spent on reports this was still the case. Our old process was, downloading the reports from Quickbooks, importing it into Google Sheets, removing lines and highlighting key figures then calculating key metrics for the company. This takes around 2 hours per client, per month. In this case, the client had 7 entities so it was very time consuming. 

I thought there must be a way of automating this manual process. I started playing around with different API’s to sync data to Google Sheets but this didn’t solve the reporting problem. I then came across LiveFlow’s Google Sheets Add-on on Google’s Workspace Marketplace. I signed up for the free 2 week trial, and I absolutely loved it! It only took a few minutes to set up and because the data is live and always up to date, you only have to set it up once! With LiveFlow I’m able to pull reports for the 7 entities into one sheet and drill down into transactions without ever having to go back into Quickbooks.

It only took a few minutes to set up and because the data is live and always up to date, you only have to set it up once!

We’re happy to hear that, thank you. How do you use LiveFlow at Bookkeep?

At Bookkeep we’re all about the latest finance technology and automating manual processes, so coming across a working solution for manual data entry in LiveFlow was refreshing. I built a simple how to guide for the bookkeepers who use LiveFlow using the resources from LiveFlow’s website. One of the bookkeepers who I manage had a client with 30 entities to manage, so what ended up as a solution to my problem resulted in using LiveFlow as a solution across the whole department! We’re saving over 15 hours a month using LiveFlow!

Amazing! What are you focusing on now that you save 15 hours a month?

It’s given me an opportunity to focus on building new processes and updating old ones to streamline the efficiency of the firm. Working on processes allows you to identify potential problems and implement solutions before jeopardising all the stakeholders involved. So this is something extremely important to focus on, which can be easily overlooked when spending several draining hours on manual data entry.

Now that the pain of spending endless hours on manual data entry is gone, our bookkeepers have increased their capacity to take on new clients as well as being able to produce more valuable information to their existing clients.


Want to to try out LiveFlow too? Install it for your Google Sheets for free here.

Still have questions? Get in touch at founders@liveflow.io, we’d love to hear from you! 

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