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BGL: Leader of the pack

SMSF Service Provider Awards: SMSF accounting software/administration

Despite building software since the late 1980s, BGL Corporate Solutions managing director Ron Lesh believes the business’s success has come from its approach to its client service proposition, rather than on the software itself.

We’ve been in the SMSF marketplace for over 16 years, so we’re pretty good at writing compliance software that works,” Lesh says.

What we find is that people release software and put a few videos up, but they won’t necessarily be there to answer the questions or provide the support that people really need. Our focus is making sure our clients get the service and are able to use the software effectively, in order to help them improve their businesses. Support, training, seminars and webinars – all those things give them value from what they buy.”

In addition, the company has always provided a feedback system for clients.

This strategy resulted in BGL taking home the CoreData SMSF award for SMSF accounting software/administration in the SMSF advising accountant category.

It was very important for us to have won the award,” Lesh says, attributing the victory to BGL’s experienced and hardworking team of 70.

When you’re a dominant supplier in the industry, people often have preconceptions about you or the way you operate. The other thing that’s nice is that we’ve got all these new competitors in the marketplace making a lot of noise, but we’re still able to win the award and lead the pack.”

In terms of accountant demand for software, he says BGL’s sales have been consistent over the past five, although it is becoming more of a challenge to keep clients interested and aware of its services.“We have a net client growth per year of somewhere between 450 and 500 clients and that’s been consistent for many years,” he says.

Our biggest challenge as an organisation is not to produce the services or the software, but to get our clients to understand what we can do for them because our clients are so time poor – getting them to read up on us is difficult.”

In August, BGL launched the closed beta rollout of its Simple Fund 360 web application to a limited number of clients. “We’re going open beta on 1 December,” Lesh says.

What will be interesting is when we move to the web product and the clients start paying for the daily services and product. We think that will change the way our revenue’s earned. “It’s been a reasonably consistent year. I think the next 12 months will be interesting to see if we get confidence back into the economy.

More SMSF Service Provider Award winners

  • Perpetual: Australian share fund
  • PIMCO: Fixed income
  • Magellan: International shares
  • Macquarie Adviser Services: Cash and accounting
  • Colonial First State: Investment platforms
  • Multiport: SMSF administration
  • TAL: Life insurance
  • ING Direct: Term deposits
  • AMP Capital: Commercial property
  • AMP Bank: SMSF term deposits
  • NAB: SMSF property loans

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