There is no doubt in my mind, after 20 years of being in the trenches with Intuit and its ecosystem of software offerings, we are now officially in a QuickBooks Online conversion crisis.
Whether you agree or not, fellow accountants, the switch is on. The QuickBooks Online for Accountant's version can make any accountant or accounting firm very useful. The dashboard tools, such as payroll, information requests, and Intuit Tax Online, make it easy to follow a client's financials in real time, all the time.
I have found the set-up time for any type of new client for QBO to be quick, easy, and effective, and the platform gives you plenty of industries to choose from. I am particularly impressed with the design of the QBO accounting ecosystem, such as for a church, where it looks and feels that it is for a church. So why is there a conversion crisis?
The crisis is brewing from within the accounting profession itself. From the intimate relationships that I share with my accounting peers across the globe, one thing stands out more than any other in the conversion crisis: the ability for accountants and accounting firms to stage effective, useful conversions from any software to QBO and the ecosystem of application add-ons. Intuit does a good job in converting data. However, they are not accountants.
Intuit has a basic understanding of the accountant and accounting firm. Yet after the client's case is converted from QuickBooks desktop product to QBO, there are other items that need to be converted and staged properly in order for the conversion to be considered a success.
As such, questions come up, usually after the fact, from the client:
- What about my payroll, merchant service, Bill.com, and other applications I have connected to by previous accounting software?
- Is there a conversion tool for these?
- How do I get my payroll out now that I am converted?
Hence, the conversion is now in a crisis for the client (who can't perform payroll or collect payment) and the accountant (who does not know who to call to resolve the issues).
One answer is to find an experienced, certified tech partner, well-versed in these conversions. These companies are the leaders and strong partners with Intuit and its ecosystem when it comes to helping any-sized accounting firm stage and execute accurate, timely data and software conversions.
Working in a midsized accounting firm, I recognized some of these problems and had to ask myself if I am in the data-conversion business or the tax and accounting business. I confirmed that I am in the tax and accounting business, ultimately adding value to my clients, their families, and their businesses.
Delegating the conversion to a separate company to take care of my conversion crisis taught me a lesson. I learned that by delegating to an expert, I was able to focus on my core business, all the while being a faithful, trusted advisor to my clients, having more time for the things that count, and adding real, sustainable profits to the bottom line.
Now that I have addressed the root of the conversion crisis and how to begin to overcome it, stay tuned for my next piece when I will address the pricing issues associated with QBO, QuickBooks Full Service Payroll, QuickBooks Payments, and other applications that we mostly use with the QBO ecosystem, and show you how other accounting firms are revolutionizing their revenue model.
Until then, may good luck and great results be with you.