In 2015, Terje Liiv took the next step in designing an outstanding client experience when the position of client experience manager was established. Her role was to focus on maintaining and developing the client relationships of the Accounting Department and to ensure that all departments in the company were able to deliver a consistently excellent client experience.
It is arguably fair to say that designing the client experience seemed like a strange plan to some colleagues at first. Liiv explains: “I met my Latvian and Lithuanian colleagues shortly after I started in my job. One of them said in amazement: “A client experience in accounting? Who even comes up with this sort of stuff!” Time has shown that I still have my job. He doesn’t!”
Liiv emphasises that the client journey does not start when the accountant starts providing the service. “Communicating with us must be a warm and pleasant experience for the client from the first moment they come to us, be it face-to-face, over the phone or by e-mail,” she says. “We respond quickly, make an offer and chime in so that we understand the client’s needs. We’re quite often told that, in addition to pleasant interaction, we were chosen because we respond quickly to requests and deal with them in a substantive way.” This, says Liiv, is a competitive advantage that is becoming increasingly important in today’s society, where time is money.
But whatever the time, it is always important to pull chestnuts out of the fire in critical situations. Liiv recalls an incident when, just before the payroll deadline, a client’s payroll software crashed. “Unfortunately, the client didn’t have a back-up copy of the data, but our people were able to complete the payroll in Excel in a short space of time, so they saved the day,” she smiles. “We later helped the client change their software, so sometimes it’s the most difficult situations that open the door to new opportunities.”
Knowing that you can always rely on a service provider is one of the many reasons why the clients of Grant Thornton Baltic have remained loyal to the company and recommend the company to others. The client satisfaction surveys carried out in cooperation with Kantar Emor since 2013 are returning higher and higher scores every year. There is certainly reason to celebrate in its 30th year of operations: nine out of ten clients recommend Grant Thornton Baltic to others and, of course, want to continue working with the company. And what could be more rewarding than satisfied clients?
I can always rely on the people at Grant Thornton
Chairman of the Management Board of Mootor Group
Cargobus, the oldest company in the Mootor Group, launched operations in 1992. We wanted to get our accounts right from the start. To that end we needed a reliable audit company, and we soon found Rimess. We had a very good working relationship with Maire Ots, who was an account manager and auditor at the time, supported by Mati Nõmmiste’s professionalism and balance. Our group of companies kept growing, so we asked Rimess to audit Sebe, Lux Express and others as well. From the mid-nineties onwards we were active in Latvia and Lithuania too, and the fact that Rimess had partners there supported our operations very well.
The companies in the Mootor Group have also received support from Rimess, and later from Grant Thornton Baltic, in the preparation of purchase and sales transactions and other areas that support business. I remember that when we started in St Petersburg in 1998, Rimess had no representation there. Mati and I discussed how we could still get our St Petersburg company reliably audited. The way we solved the situation was that the audit was done by a local company, but Rimess reviewed the reports and the auditor’s conclusion afterwards. That way we could be sure that everything had been done correctly.
In 2009, when I bought out Deutsche Touring, a subsidiary of the German state railway Deutsche Bahn, from Lux Express, the whole thing was done in cooperation with Rimess. Their contribution was also significant when the Mootor Group merged with Patria, the largest military group in the Nordic countries, back in 2017, and advising us on the deal was a big job for Mati and his team.
Despite the fact that both the Mootor Group and Rimess have grown a lot over the years, our interaction remains the same as ever: professional, personable and to the point. Audit firms tend to be cold, rigid and shackled to the rules, but we’ve always had a trusting and straightforward relationship with Grant Thornton Baltic and they’ve always been available to us: I don’t have to call the secretary to make an appointment if I want to speak to Mati. It’s very important to me that I can always rely on them.