It's time accountants got some stimulus money
"The accounting and tax profession is not insulated from the economy. It's imperative that practitioners operate at peak levels of efficiency to meet the needs of their clients and to grow their own practices," said Jill Ward, senior vice president and general manager of the Intuit Accounting Professionals Division. "As the leader in providing time-saving tools to accounting professionals and their clients, we are doing everything possible to ensure they are able to meet this challenge head on."
Saving Accounting Professionals Time and Money
To help accounting professionals save time and money as they collaborate with their clients, Intuit is offering a 50 percent discount on a bundle of QuickBooks Premier Accountant 2009 and QuickBooks Pro 2009 products. With the new Client Data Review feature in QuickBooks Premier Accountant 2009, accounting professionals save time by quickly troubleshooting client errors, which saves hours in month- and year-end closings.
The Power to Get More Done  Web site will be updated throughout tax season for the best offers on Intuit's products and services.
Stimulus Grants Give Accounting Firms the Power to Do More
For accounting professionals who want to start new firms and grow existing practices, Intuit is awarding grants of $10,000 – plus up to $10,000 in free products and services – to 10 new or established firms, giving them a boost to hire and invest in their businesses and thus get more done.
Accounting professionals can download the entry form  and prepare a brief, high-level business plan that explains how they will use the money to stimulate growth. Entries are due by 9:30 p.m. Pacific time on April 30. Judges include a panel of Intuit and accounting profession executives, and winners will be chosen each month from May through July.
Intuit Director of Accountant Services Rich Walker suggested the business plans should be small, perhaps two pages, and they should address questions like, "What are they going to do to grow, create jobs, stimulate the economy? We want people to say, 'I'm going to hire, or get clients in a particular field.'"
New Training to Help Accounting Professionals Increase Productivity
Accounting professionals can save time and money with the latest practice tips and techniques through Intuit Academy podcasts . This free podcast series, with new installments available every two weeks, trains accounting professionals to increase productivity through the use of Intuit offerings and provides a great way to learn best practices from Intuit experts and their fellow practitioners.
For example, attendees at the Intuit 2008 Lacerte Tax Software Update course reported that, due to the podcast training, they saved 30 hours on complex business returns and 54 hours on individual returns during the tax season, based on a customer study conducted by Intuit in July 2008.
Saving Clients Time and Money
Nearly 70 percent of accountants who recommend QuickBooks recommend it as a way for small businesses to run their businesses more efficiently, according to a recent survey by International Communications Research, on behalf of Intuit.
Now, accounting professionals can help clients save time and money by passing along free software and more than $2,000 in savings on select Intuit financial and business management products and services to their clients. The client offers include:
- Free small business tools for clients just starting out: Free QuickBooks Simple Start, free Intuit Websites Starter Package, six months of free Intuit Online Payroll, free incorporation services, and free QuickBooks Cash Register Plus download. These offers are also part of Intuit's "Small Business United" initiative, which is being announced in conjunction with the accountant-focused Power to Get More Done.
- Discounts up to 60 percent on accounting, payroll, credit card processing and mid-market offerings for established clients: Substantial discounts on QuickBooks Pro 2009, QuickBooks Enhanced Payroll, QuickBooks Assisted Payroll, QuickBooks Merchant Services, and QuickBooks Enterprise Solutions are offered throughout tax season.
Brad Smith, president and chief executive officer of Intuit, said, "It is our time to further help out and make an added difference. For the past two decades, we have supported small businesses – the backbone of our economy – and the accounting professionals who are of paramount importance to the success of businesses. We are in a unique position to help accountants increase productivity, offer some of our best-selling software solutions for free, and provide stimulus grants for the accounting profession."
The Power to Get More Done initiative is just one example of Intuit's company-wide focus on helping its customers save and make money. While this benefit is particularly relevant in today's environment, it has and always will be Intuit's hallmark as it continues to deliver innovative products and services for its customers.