Back in July, I shared my thoughts on the QuickBooks Online Accountant Work feature, and promised a follow-up as I used it more. Well, truth to tell I have not had as much success with Work as I expected.
Why is that? Because I find my clients are not using it. Who’s fault is that? Mine!
As a brief recap, the features I highlighted include the ability to message your clients directly from within QBO, the ability to request and share documents within QBO, and the ability to create tasks and track their status. There are more features as well.
Here are the reasons why Work has not been as useful to me as I anticipated:
- I already use a third party app, Aero WorkFlow, as my task management software. So I don’t need to create and track tasks for myself in QBO Work.
- As a Sole Proprietor, I don’t have any staff, so I don’t need to assign and track tasks for others.
- I love the document sharing feature, which I believe is a much more secure method than email. I can request a document, or the client can elect to share one with me. The rub is, my clients are non-responsive to my requests to share, despite several attempts. I finally had to return to email to request the documents I needed.
If you want to adopt Work within your firm: I suggest having a firm-wide meeting to discuss the adoption of Work. Give a demo and explain how you plan to use Work within the firm, emphasizing the benefits the tools bring to the table.
If you want to adopt Work with your clients: I suggest using traditional email first, to introduce Work. Better yet, schedule a call with your client(s). Explain what Work is, why you want to adopt it, and the benefits you feel it brings to the working relationship. Then do a test, and follow-up with the client to ensure:
a) they received your communication via Work
b) they know where to look for it (did it go into their Spam folder?)
c) they know how to respond to your Work requests.
I still think the Work feature is a great tool for firms of any size for all of the features mentioned above. Moreover, I suspect the list of features will grow as Intuit continues to develop the Work area. In order to best leverage the Work features, a strategic roll-out plan will provide the most satisfactory results.
Jody Linick is an AIPB Certified Bookkeeper and a QuickBooks® Certified Pro Advisor. Her company, FitBooks Pro (formerly called Linick Consulting), specializes in remote bookkeeping services using hosted QuickBooks and QuickBooks Online. You can find her series of Blog posts here.