Case Studies

How this accounting practice broke free of a never-ending loop of inefficiencies

Realizing that plenty of time was being wasted asking new clients the same repetitive questions every day sparked DFK Hirn Newey’s team to search for a better solution. 

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Before Content Snare, DFK Hirn Newey followed a similar process to a lot of accounting firms — sending regular information requests to its clients over email. Without having any awareness that there was a better way, it quietly accepted all the problems and delays that came along with this method. 

Today, Content Snare has become crucial to the firm's operations. The tools’ request process has not only helped the firm break free of a never-ending loop of inefficiencies and delays but it’s also contributed to improving client relationships as a result. 

DFM Hirn Newey is a Brisbane-based leading accounting and business advisory practice that provides accounting, taxation, and compliance services to fast-growing businesses. 

We spoke with Hannah Olson, a senior Manager specializing in tax and compliance work, to find out more about the role Content Snare played in transforming the whole way that they do business. 

A cadence of confusion

Hannah describes a familiar scenario in accounting firms: the daily grind of sending queries, receiving piecemeal responses, and engaging in endless back-and-forth emails. 

Relying on email to send out client requests caused several problems. For one, they’d spend ages following up on their requests or trying to decipher confusing notes on documents. 

We’d send out questions and clients would say “I’ve got my responses in red”, and then we’d respond in blue, and they’d respond in red again, and it just got confusing, not just for us, but on the client side.

The team also didn’t have a way to determine what questions to ask their clients or how to set up a logical flow of conditional questions based on their answers. 

We’d end up asking not enough questions to get what we needed, or on the other hand, a million questions that weren’t even relevant to the client. 

Even when they did ask the right questions, they wouldn’t always receive answers in the format they needed. For example, a client would respond to a question asking them when they sold a property with just the year as the answer. This wouldn’t be sufficient because they’d need to know the specific day, month, and year. 

We need to standardise this!

Recognizing that plenty of time was being wasted asking new clients the same repetitive questions every day sparked Hannah to search for a better solution. 

I just went to a partner and said, 'Can I just have a go at using this Content Snare, just a one-off?' And we just found that it was a really smooth, easy process.

What followed was a drastic improvement in DFK Hirn Newey’s query process.  

1. Asking the right questions 

Hannah quickly noticed how much Content Snare’s questionnaire templates guided her team on the most relevant questions to ask, be it for client onboarding, a tax questionnaire, or compliance. 

The questionnaires gave me good insights on what I could be asking. I was able to ask more relevant questions than I would usually ask before. I also learned to ask clearer questions.

Hannah also noted Content Snare’s AI feature as a go-to feature the team often uses to speed up the creation of questionnaires by having AI generate the question list. 

2. Receiving the right answer formats

Having the ability to immediately accept, reject, or comment on a client response or document upload helps the team significantly. When the wrong document gets uploaded, it’s much easier to flag issues with the document and provide a small explanation for the correction that’s needed. 

The team is now receiving answers in the format that they need from the start, like receiving actual bank statements rather than typed-out numbers. 

3. Breaking free of the never-ending query loop 

With its original process, DFK Hirn Newey would spend considerable time on these three things:

1. Sending queries
2. Following up on queries
3. Reviewing answers. 

With our original process, we were stuck in a never-ending loop between these. You send queries, and then you have to manually follow up, and then they answer, but then you need more, so now you're back to square one, and then you have to follow those up. 

With Content Snare, the query part is easy - we have templates to use and we have the sending part down. Following up is already done automatically, giving us peace of mind. We just have to spend our time reviewing the answers. We don't end up in this never-ending loop.

4. Forming better relationships 

Even though Hannah was initially worried that the transition to a questionnaire tool might limit the firm from offering their personal touch over emails, she found that the efficiencies the tool provides on both ends has actually helped the firm form better relationships with the clients than it would have before.  

One tool, multiple applications 

Today, Content Snare is the new standard within DFK Hirn Newey. Everyone in the office is a user and it no longer relies on email to gather information or follow up.

Not only does it actively use Content Snare to provide services like individual tax returns. It has also found multiple other applications for the tool and formed an implementation committee.   

Once we saw how smoothly it worked, we decided to use Content Snare for more functions. We figured maybe we could expand this to annual compliance work, advisory work, etc. 

It really has formed an integral part of our firm.

Continuous improvements

Even with the success of Content Snare, Hannah and her team continually refine their processes. 

We're creating new templates every day because we still see, 'Oh, maybe we shouldn't have asked that.

This iterative approach ensures that their system remains effective and client-focused.

The result: focusing on what matters most 

Before Content Snare, the firm found that it spent so much time chasing around information and queries that it had less time to focus on the services it provides. This even led it to go over budget just to satisfy the requirements of the job. 

Having Content Snare allows us to focus on our knowledge and expertise. It lets us focus on the client to add value and get the job done right and well.

If someone asked me whether to try Content Snare I’d say “Give it a go and you’ll very quickly see the value of it” — how much less time you spend on emails and how much more time you can spend on the important jobs at hand. 

The smart way to collect content and documents

Hannah's story is a testament to the power of embracing new technologies in traditional fields like accounting. Content Snare helped DFK Hirn Newey break free from the inefficient loop of email queries, saving time and enhancing their ability to focus on client service. For other firms facing similar challenges, Hannah's experience is a compelling example of how adopting the right tool can revolutionize your workflow.

Ready to give your processes a complete re-work? Give Content Snare a go today with your free trial.

DFK Hirn Newey


DFM Hirn Newey is a Brisbane-based leading accounting and business advisory practice that provides accounting, taxation, and compliance services to fast-growing businesses.


The firm was experiencing plenty of inefficiencies with its request process, leaving plenty of room for confusion and limiting its ability to focus on its core competency.


Implementing a data-collection tool to help with client queries reduces the number of instances that lead to confusion in the query process, sparing the firm plenty of time on back and forth and helping them focus on the important tasks at hand instead.




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