Getting The Most out of Dext with Michael Shafman CEO NexCloud Consulting

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At Dext, we ask the hard questions for you to help share some of the best tips possible for advancing your practice. We’ve worked with one of our partners Michael Shafman, CEO of NexCloud Consulting, to cover some of the topics we know you are curious about.

We asked Michael to share his experience and advice for getting the most value out of using our platform. Here are some of the key pieces of advice that he had to share.

How should people view Dext in their tech stack? 

It’s a piece of technology, but it’s really a way to empower a bookkeeper or a business owner to spend less time on data entry and more time thinking about what they are looking at. 

To me, Dext is your automated data entry tool. You submit and Dext comes in and extracts all the data. For traditional companies, they have AP clerks that spend so much time writing, filing, and then finally entering the data. With Dext, it allows you to shift to a manager type of role where instead of focusing on data, you just need to review it.

Dext as your data entry bookkeeper and process engineer gives you the ability to “train” the system through supplier rules. You are also removing the extra human element from the process by having a system that will consistently apply the rules you teach it.

What do people get wrong when using tools like Dext?

They are coming in with the assumption of perfection from the tool. No tool is perfect, and you never should remove the human aspect from the process. Different vendors send invoices in different ways. The data isn’t always crisp and clean. You’re speeding up the process, but it’s not fully taking over for you. These tools can help you be way more efficient, but it’s a tool to assist, not replace you.

We aren’t replacing bookkeepers, right?

Simply, you aren’t. Dext allows bookkeepers to focus less on data entry and more on helping businesses discover and understand their financial data. With that additional time, Bookkeepers are empowered to look more at the big picture and help with more critical areas like payroll or analyzing the P&L. Bookkeepers can shift their time to more effective operational activities; it’s a reallocation of resources instead of a replacement of resources.

How do you “train” Dext?

It’s an upfront time investment. As you’re getting used to the system and starting out, you should ensure you are setting up each applicable vendor’s supplier rules for your business.  Setting up these rules to apply even simple descriptions and categories can make the process simpler. It doesn’t have to be too complicated.

How does Dext help expand the role of Accountants and Bookkeepers?

It allows accountants and bookkeepers to reallocate their time and be more efficient and effective. The wrong way to look at it is as a removal of the role. Instead, these tools will enable them to spend the same or less amount of time but in a more effective way. It also allows them to spend more time in other impactful ways, budgeting, cash flow projections, or really anything that can help a business owner. It allows for a reallocation of resources to other critical items.