Question

Project Manager Role/Job Description?

  • 22 February 2023
  • 6 replies
  • 97 views

Userlevel 1

Hey All -- hoping to solicit some feedback from the group from folks who have someone at their firm in a “project management” type role.

In an ideal world, I would want someone to be the owner of all things Karbon and fill a project management / account management role to augment our client services team. 

For those of you who have someone in that role in a dedicated capacity, how do you define their day to day responsibilities?  I have a general sense of what it might look like (see below) but for awhile now I have struggled with how to properly articulate the job description.  A sample list of the representative responsibilities would be things like:

  1. Assigning workload / capacity management of team members’ work
  2. Monitoring and ensuring delivery of client deadlines
  3. Scheduling / planning new client work
  4. Oversight of Karbon hygiene (making sure due dates are set appropriately, statuses are being used appropriately, etc.)

We are a team of 20+ and have used Karbon for a few years now.  Up until this point, the “project management” responsibilities have been handled by partner level and manager level resources.  However, it seems like that is sucking up too much valuable time that could otherwise be spent elsewhere.

If anyone here has someone that handles this at their firm, what are the representative list of responsibilities? How do you define the role?  What aspects of it have gone well?  What has not gone well?

Thanks in advance!


6 replies

Userlevel 7
Badge +19

Hi @Curt Mastio, we are about half your size and the managers handle this. I’m curious to learn how other firms handle it.

Userlevel 7
Badge +10

Hi @Curt Mastio 

We have a client services team that looks after the initial assignment to a bookkeeping or accounting team, they will do as much of the set up as they can with the information that they have. 

From there each team has a Workflow Manager whose responsibilities include the project management - the responsibilities you listed and general team leadership.  Typically, our Workflow Managers are responsible for a team of 5-9 accountants and bookkeepers.  

To ensure projects start on the right foot we have a couple of Onboarding templates that cover the set up and ensure the team understands the engagement.  These templates start with onboarding the client into our processes and finishes with the team getting to work.

We started this when we were about 30 people, we are at 80ish now, it’s key that the Client Services Team gets the projects into the hands of the Production Team as quickly as possible. 

We also conduct random ‘audits’ of the process to see what is working and what is not, ideally Workflow managers will audit their peers - it’s a great way to learn from each other.

We review, revisit and revise on the regular!

Badge

Hi @Curt Mastio,

I am a project manager with an accounting firm and the position can be a big challenge. I have found much of the accounting world is laser focused on the idea all work needs to be in a work item. This is not always the case for all staff members, we often have roles that perform non-client focused tasks and developing the understanding was important for our company to utilize this position appropriately. That being said, the accounting industry does not define workflow models used in numerous other fields. So my first goal was to establish and determine how to implement a workflow model. I have been a Project Manager within the technology sector for a fair number of years with certification in many of these styles. I chose to use what I believe is the best for dynamic environments, Agile. With having a work flow framework I got to work developing, teaching, and implementing this process. our partner team no longer has to worry about workflow and assigning work as it is my role and I know at any given moment where my teams are and what they need help with.

Our time utilization ends up looking as such:

Client team 90%+ client time

Admin 50-70% client time

Project Manager <10% client time

If you want a further explanation please feel free to reach out to me and we can discuss. A lot is behind bringing on a project manager and allowing them to function properly. It can be a large change management process depending on how you are setup. The most critical facet of it all is having a clear and defined workflow process. I would say what is happening now in the accounting industry is what would be called waterfall, it is essentially whatever is next gets assigned. It is messy in comparative but can still work.

Userlevel 3
Badge +3

Hi everyone, this thread came up when I was searching for a job description for a “Workflow Manager” or “Karbon manager”, as we’re looking to create a dedicated role at our firm to take care of all aspects of Karbon management.

 

@Curt Mastio , did you ever get a list of job responsibilities from anyone, or create your own list?

 

If anyone else has a list, please do share. I’d love to see what folks have come up with and can of course share what I have as well once drafted. Thanks.

Userlevel 1

Hey @amlbmo I unfortunately did not-- this is something that’s still on our radar so I would love to compare notes on what you come up with!

Userlevel 3
Badge +3

Hey @Curt Mastio , no worries, here you go (aided by ChatGPT and using some of your initial requirements above in the prompt) - hope it helps.

 

Job Title: Workflow Specialist

Job Summary: The Workflow Specialist will be an integral part of our Virtual CFO business, ensuring that our project management and workflow systems, particularly within Karbon, are optimized for peak efficiency. This role will focus on the meticulous documentation and management of workflows, supporting the client services team and enhancing our service delivery.

Key Responsibilities:

  • Tool Optimization: Configure and optimize Karbon settings for streamlined operations.
  • Deadline Management: Monitor and report on the delivery of client service deadlines, providing management with comprehensive status updates.
  • Onboarding Precision: Ensure the accurate and timely creation of work items for each client during the onboarding process.
  • Karbon Hygiene: Maintain Karbon hygiene, monitoring due dates, statuses, and overall use of the tool to meet project and client needs.
  • Documentation Development: Develop and maintain step-by-step documentation in Karbon for all standard procedures and recurring tasks.
  • Documentation Enhancement: Regularly review and improve existing Karbon documentation to keep it current and effective.
  • Template Creation: Design and refine Karbon work templates for consistent and efficient task execution across client accounts.
  • Training & Support: Provide team support and training on the effective use of Karbon, enhancing team proficiency and consistency.
  • Process Feedback: Collaborate with the team to gather feedback and identify opportunities for process improvement.
  • Best Practices Leadership: Lead by example in adopting best practices in workflow management and documentation, ensuring our processes are scalable and adaptable to client needs.

This role will suit a proactive, detail-oriented individual with a passion for technology and process optimization, who is eager to take ownership of this vital function within our growing team.

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