Tax Consulting Firm Creates A Seamless Hub For Collaboration And Communication With Microsoft Teams

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Executive Summary

A professional services firm was looking to implement a single solution for internal communication and collaboration. Replacing multiple platforms with Microsoft Teams allowed the organization to utilize a single easy-to-access platform for all internal communication and collaboration.

The Client

The client is a professional services firm specializing in tax consulting and planning services and solutions to individuals and businesses, located in Philadelphia.

The Challenge

Before engaging Withum, the firm used multiple platforms to complete day-to-day tasks. This included using Windstream for calling, Zoom for meetings, Spark for chatting and email for regular communication. Using all these different tools created inefficiency and made it hard to collaborate internally. The team’s main form of communication was through email. This led to poor project management, communications getting lost and multiple versions of documents in distribution.

The firm recognized its need to consolidate its platforms to create more efficient processes. The leadership team also wanted to reduce the number of emails sent company-wide and create a better form of communication with their teams. Another major pain point was only being able to access needed documents when connected to the firm’s VPN. Their employees required a solution that enabled the team to access documents offline. The firm needed direction on where to go from here and best practices implementing new platforms and training.

The Approach And Solution

The client brought on Withum’s Digital and Technology Transformation Team to implement Microsoft Teams. This would combine the client’s calling, meeting, chatting and communication platforms into a one-stop-shop to utilize internally. The firm wanted to understand the capabilities Teams could provide their team. To best show the platform capabilities, the Withum team brought in two of their own tax department experts to discuss how they utilize the platform at Withum as a department. The firm wanted real-world experience in the industry to help them understand their organization’s best utilization options.

Withum laid out the groundwork for Microsoft Teams and provided all the needed training for the firm’s employees while going through the change. Three trainings were provided for the partners, associates and administration team members, which Withum managed. Withum also offered an advanced governance workshop for the firm to implement post busy season. This training included a roadmap for keeping files as secure as possible, data loss prevention, retention policies, Azure Protection, multi-factor authentication, and protecting sensitive information, including Personally Identifiable Information (PII). Along with Teams, Withum moved all file shares to Microsoft OneDrive, allowing for documents to be easily accessible offline without connecting to the firm’s VPN.

The Results, ROI

Implementing Microsoft Teams provided the firm with an easy onestop shop for internal communication. The platform is easy to use and provided an efficient way for the team to collaborate.

Withum’s team has monitored the firm’s digital transformation journey. To track user adoption, Withum has been tracking the firm’s productivity score. A productivity score is a number Microsoft uses to compare an organization to other organizations their size in their location and industry.

A month after implementation, the firm’s productivity score was up 20%. This brought their score up to 74%, leading to higher Teams utilization than their peers. The partner group within the firm was more resistant to implementing Teams. After Withum provided Teams trainings, the partner group showed 20% early adoption of the platform.

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