If your business provides professional services, you know that satisfying customers has never been more challenging. In a recent survey by Harris Pool, 82 percent of U.S. corporate executives said that customers’ expectations of their companies were higher than they were even three years ago. And nearly six in 10 said it was difficult for their company to please customers.

What’s driving up these expectations and heaping on the pressure? Technology. More than 75 percent of those same corporate execs think that the internet and consumer app companies have been setting a new benchmark for customer experiences. Just look at the world today’s customers live in:

Social media, with its instant feed of live updates, breaking news and messages, has changed the definition of what “fast” means. A Google search can instantly answer just about any question, so of course customers expect companies to have accurate data at their fingertips. Smartphones are everywhere, always on and always connected, driving expectations of 24/7-availability from any location.

These days, customers expect a high-level of personalization, transparency and collaboration. Delivering a high-quality service depends on seeing the full customer account picture, including financials, invoicing and payments, billable time, expenses to project status.

Such comprehensive understanding becomes a problem for many professional service providers. Too many employees are forced to pull together data using manual and inconsistent processes. This often results in issues like a monthly management report laboriously produced from inconsistent data from different sources and time periods. The data is then massaged in an attempt to provide a more accurate view. In reality, the information is often outdated and inaccurate, decision-making is impaired, and customer expectations are not met.

To meet client expectations in real-time, you need up-to-date access to reliable, meaningful data. That’s why Sage Live has partnered with Kimble to provide accurate and comprehensive financial data with seamless project management integration. By combining these tools, you can run your entire operation with both the benefit of real-time data and the insight that comes from forward-looking data. Your decision-making will improve, and your customers will notice the difference.