The rise of Netflix and fall of Blockbuster

Netflix and Blockbuster paint the perfect picture of what it means to embrace change. Survive and thrive or resist change and die. 

Blockbuster dominated the video rental industry during the 90s. However, Netflix’s launch set out to rival Blockbuster in a way unimaginable. Rapid technological evolution coupled with changing customer needs meant there was a new opportunity on the horizon. Netflix capitalised on this lucrative market opportunity, championing an innovative new model. Overly reliant on its brick-and-mortar business model, Blockbuster missed pivotal opportunities. Today, only one Blockbuster store remains. 

Are you the Netflix or Blockbuster of accounting?

Netflix’s rise and Blockbuster fall is a cautionary tale demonstrating how easily accountants can fall victim to Blockbuster blind-spots. The root of Blockbuster’s failure was a mix of poor decisions and resistance to embrace change in customer needs.

Anticipating the impact technology would have, Netflix capitalised on this with on-demand services. Netflix started where Blockbuster stopped. Sensing vulnerability, Netflix created a simplified, better customer experience.

Stop. Take a look at your business model. Assess your customer dynamic. Like Netflix – are your processes making customer’s lives easier? Are you listening to your customers? Are you innovating and simplifying your customer’s experience?

The key to survival amidst economic turbulence and technological upheaval is to stay attuned. You need to be willing to disrupt yourself and not be afraid to fail. The old mantra ‘if it’s not broken, don’t fix it’ isn’t enough to future proof your business. You need to see opportunities and adapt to the changing landscape. 

Covid-19, Change and The Need for Digital Transformation 

In just over a year the Covid-19 crisis has dramatically shifted the world as we know it, accelerating the pace of change. Abandoning traditional physical interactions, many have been forced into a virtual existence. Consequently, Covid-19 has exposed the shaky foundations which many built-in their 9-5 office confinements. 

Rapid changes to work practices and customer expectations have urgently demanded the need to remain competitive and relevant. However, the pursuit to stand in a field of largely indistinguishable competition has moved to a new battlefield: technology. 

If there were any lingering doubts about the necessity of technology to business longevity Covid-19 crisis has silenced them. Technology has become a primary point for communication, innovation, and decision-making in a contactless world. Post-Covid the impact of digital transformation to future-proof your business is undeniable. 70% of the new value created in the economy over the next decade will be based on digitally enabled platform business models. 

This new and urgent demand further emphasises the significance of the Netflix and Blockbuster story. Covid-19 is a reality check for accountants that have been reluctant to embrace digital transformations and now find themselves woefully unprepared. Inefficient in business operations may have been able to persist before, but are now unable to. However, businesses that have not only developed digital strategies but executed them before the pandemic are now in a position to get ahead of their less nimble competitors.

That is not to underestimate Covid-19 related challenges. However traditional accounting processes are not sufficient to address the demands of Covid-19. Technology empowers you to forge forward and thrive during a time of uncertainty. It will help you respond successfully to new demands in customer expectation, recruitment, work practice, and core business functionality. You can do this by taking a digital-first approach. You must reshape your business model to successfully leverage the digital world. Digital tools such as Zoom, Microsoft Teams, Connect4, Cloud accounting platforms reveal a new value chain and experience that can be created virtually. 

What does this mean for talent? 

Remote working brings an array of challenges and new distractions to work-life such as recruitment, direct team engagement and the potential to feel disconnected, less creative, and less productive. However, technology has created a greater opportunity to recruit top employees from a larger talent pool. Today you are no longer limited to recruiting from your local borough but you can recruit from across the globe. This can enable you to attract the best team with the core skills needed to enhance your practice. It is also vital to maintain the best talent. Candidates look critically at the technology your practice uses. Outdated technology can harm productivity, morale, and growth. Your practice’s ability to recruit and maintain the best talent going forward will depend on how well you adapt to technology now. 

Cloud accounting for example is far from outdated systems and clucky manual processes. You need to implement cloud software to make it easier for your current team to keep accounting processes running smoothly. Cloud allows you to easily save everything in an online database,  making it easy for users and clients to log in and access data and collaborate anywhere and anytime. 

What does this mean for flexibility?

As the majority of firms try to decide the best way forward, new challenges and trends such as child care, home-schooling, homeworking, and flexible hours caused by Covid-19 mean that firms must redesign a new future. 

Covid-19 has debunked the work practices we once tethered ourselves to. As many have become undone from these realities, a new sense of normality has been created, and is critical to implementing going forward to maintain current employees and recruit and maintain new ones. 12% of employees want to return to full-time work and 72% want a hybrid remote-office model. Although the promise of hybrid work is finally here to truly achieve the benefits of flexible working, a digital-first approach is critical to survive now and post-Covid-19. What if the high-street is indefinitely opened? You must create a responsive flexible working strategy that includes technology. 

Client collaboration for example ensures real-time data transfer between you and your client through the cloud environment and flows through into other tax services, allowing you to collaborate more effectively with your clients on an ongoing basis. Or digital planning tools like email templates, e-signatures that allow you to take control, creating a seamless customer experience, meeting customer needs, and implementing an efficient work practice. 

Challenges and choices

Now you know how vital technology is to your practice survival, your next step is to select the right accounting software.

Since Covid-19 emergence has your tech stack pulled you through? Has your software enabled you to successfully meet your customers’ needs, support your business and work practice changes?  It’s no use having software if it doesn’t meet the needs of your practice.

It’s time to review the needs of your business. Software will be valuable if it can either add a key service you are interested in providing or if it can make your current processes easier. When choosing the right software for practice, consider how easy implementing the software is, can you create the reports you need? Is collaboration promoted? Is compliance built-in? Can you manage everything in one place? What support will you get?

Is exporting and importing data a seamless process? Not all softwares is connected when the API is linked, this can make the process challenging. Issues relating to data diligence, such as data duplication can arise which is harmful to your clients and your reputation. 

Are you getting a competitive price for core functionality? Don’t just go with the shiniest software with all the glitter which is costly. Ensure you are paying for what you need. Some software layer up costs from cloud integrations. You don’t need more ‘’things’’ to keep your company moving. Choose software that gives you the core of what you need. 

How can Capium help you now?

We created Capium to help you remain innovative and stand out from the crowd. We’ll help you keep moving with the changes and difficult times by giving you the tools, software, and support to future-proof your business, so you can be more like Netflix and less like Blockbuster. 

Capium is a true cloud platform, innovative to the core, Capium is a remote working solution. With Capium you can create a seamless customer experience, meet urgent business needs, while enabling your team to work effectively and flexibly. Get ready to experience client collaboration like no other.

We’ve got you covered. Capium is  fully compliant software. We are MTD compliant, ITSA MTD future-proof, and we offer integrated AML checks and more. 

Manage every aspect of your practice from bookkeeping to tax returns in one place at your fingertips. Streamline your practice with integrated timesheets, task and deadline management, email templates, and SMS reminders. 

Unlike our competitors, you don’t have to break the bank to get what you need. You’ll pay less for more with our attractive price plan. 

Get stuck into all these benefits with our free support and free seamless onboarding and training experience. All with the added benefit of limitless users.

Like what you hear? Book a demo today to find out about our services or talk to our product specialist to find out more about how Capium can help you modernise and move into digital transformation successfully now and in the future.  

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