How we at Benefitax manage to continue working with high quality, punctuality and motivation despite of the coronavirus

Germany and many other countries are currently affected by a pandemic. This has consequences for companies and private individuals. At Benefitax, we care about the health of our employees. At the same time, we are concerned that our clients can continue to expect the usual quality and punctuality of our services. This article is intended to show how we at Benefitax deal with Corona.

The turnover of the tax consulting industry is currently only slightly affected by the pandemic. This is also the case with us, and we are working without restrictions, such as short-time work program, even during the crisis. All work is done as usual and submitted to the tax office on time. In the case when the legislator has extended deadlines, our clients benefit from this. We have also sent out a lot of information about tax and financial aid for companies affected by Corona.

Applied Hygiene Concept

In order to protect our employees, we have been following a comprehensive hygiene and clearance concept since the beginning of the crisis. From the very beginning, instructions for protection and prevention were attached, disinfectants were provided and the seating was rearranged so that the minimum distance of 1.50 m to the seat neighbor was maintained. Those who feel uncomfortable can work from home. Anyone who shows signs of corona or returns from a risk area is no longer allowed to enter the office and is urged to have themselves tested. Only after presenting a negative test may he or she return to the office. Fortunately, none of our employees has yet tested positive for Corona. IT access has been set up for all employees to work from their home office.

Benefitax’s everyday working life in times of pandemic

As the crisis worsened and the measures recommended or ordered by politicians were implemented, we also made further progress. Our specialist teams work alternately in the office and in the home office on a weekly basis. With this and an attendance plan, a single room is available for each employee present in the office. There are no more client meetings that take place in our office, but all communication happens by phone, via email or online. We also no longer travel to our clients for personal meetings. All training courses are now only completed online. Our Christmas party 2020 was cancelled and instead every employee is allowed to wish for a present. Internal meetings are also generally held online. Should it nevertheless be necessary for training or coordination purposes to meet with several employees in one room while observing the rules of distance, one of the air filter units with HEPA filter purchased for this purpose will be used and the room will be regularly ventilated.

Our employees also have the option of working from a home office on a continuous basis if they wish or feel more comfortable doing so.

However, we refrain from forcing them to do so. Many employees who work in a home office on a long-term basis complain of social isolation and talk about the feeling that “the ceiling is falling on their heads” at home. With this procedure we are preventing this isolation. In addition, we hold a weekly team meeting online with all employees. Furthermore, the leaders of the team located in the home office are required to hold a daily online meeting with all members of their team to confirm the daily tasts with each other. This method was chosen in consultation with the employees to ensure regular communication within the group. We provide medical surgical or FFP2 masks free of charge to the employees who come to office.

For the office new ergonomic office chairs were purchased for almost all employees at the end of 2020, and they were offered to take the previous (old) office chair to their home office. Headsets and cameras were purchased for the online meetings and training sessions. Training sessions and test sessions were held to teach employees how to use the common online conference tools. Additionally we have already adopted a “Benefitax GmbH Data Protection Guideline for Home Work (“Home Office”)” at the beginning of 2020, which ensures that unauthorized third parties cannot gain access to confidential data.

However, we refrain from forcing them to do so. Many employees who work in a home office on a long-term basis complain of social isolation and talk about the feeling that “the ceiling is falling on their heads” at home. With this procedure we are preventing this isolation. In addition, we hold a weekly team meeting online with all employees. Furthermore, the leaders of the team located in the home office are required to hold a daily online meeting with all members of their team to confirm the daily tasts with each other. This method was chosen in consultation with the employees to ensure regular communication within the group. For the office new ergonomic office chairs were purchased for almost all employees at the end of 2020, and they were offered to take the previous (old) office chair to their home office. Headsets and cameras were purchased for the online meetings and training sessions. Training sessions and test sessions were held to teach employees how to use the common online conference tools. Additionally we have already adopted a “Benefitax GmbH Data Protection Guideline for Home Work (“Home Office”)” at the beginning of 2020, which ensures that unauthorized third parties cannot gain access to confidential data.

Progressive digitalization – despite of and because of Corona

The digitalization of our work, which was planned for 2020 anyway, was somewhat accelerated by Corona. As a result, we now work largely paperless. This has been achieved by the audit-proof storage of documents in a document management system (DMS) and individual process documentation for replacement scanning. Clients provide us with scanned documents and contracts for processing almost exclusively. Anyone who still sends us paper receipts will receive them back after processing, without us making paper copies of them. In this way we contribute to less paper consumption and to climate protection. Clients receive online access to their receipts and evaluations via DATEV’s “Unternehmen Online”. We also offer digital payroll accounting via “DATEV Arbeitnehmer Online”. For clients who also want to change over and become paperless, we offer support in creating their own procedural documentation to replace scanning and our IT service provider in selecting a suitable document management system.

Stay healthy. You can count on us as a reliable partner for tax and accounting issues, even in a pandemic.

Digitalisierung bei Benefitax