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Software for CPAs/Accountants/bookkeepers?

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Level 4

Hello, if you have your own firm or work for an accounting firm, what softwares do you use for your business? For tax I currently use pro series, but I am trying to scale up to offer more than just taxation. QBO I know is one, but for those full on established accounting firms, what softwares are used? Thank you. 

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Level 12

"QBO I know is one,"

But that isn't meant for you. That is meant for you to access a data file that your QBO-using client has set up and is using. You would have access through the Accountant's Portal, where you also could have your own FEIN set up as a QBO user data file, or not. Your QBO-using client sends you an Accountant Invite.

It really depends on the significance of the data you intend to manage and the services you intend to offer.

Are you only intending to be "doing books" for the clients, so everything is inhouse and under your control? Are you working with their bookkeeper, where they do a lot of things for themselves? Will you support clients that have POS? How that data is used and managed and handed off will matter for which tools and functions you will use. You would want to eliminate redundant handling of POS data.

For instance, you might want to use QB desktop or online for your own business. It has more management and operating functions than "an accounting package" because it is a business management program. That's why it goes far beyond using debits and credits. As an example:

Your business includes general bookkeeping, payroll, business valuations, and you have multiple people working for you, and you have multiple charge rates by person and service offered, and want to be able to set up, use, and report on all those options. This includes Quantity, rates, person doing the work, client done for, and all of this is what QB excels at. You might manage your own firm using QB, but use Sage for large "accounting" functions for those clients.

And other services you offer might include Supporting QB Clients. You might have some clients that use QB Desktop and bring you their files, for you to work with, and for you to give back "changes" and that requires you to be using the QB Desktop Accountant Edition (regular or Enterprise, or both) to match the file they brought you. That also means you would keep each year, such as right now, 2020 is coming out, but you would want 2019 and 2018. You would skip installing or supporting clients using 2017, since you can convince them they should move to 2020, anyway. However, Intuit will support QB 2017 until May of 2020. This is a Huge Market, so make a decision as to if this is part of what you intend to offer.

For instance: you have a retailer that has a POS system, which integrates into QB and they use that in their backoffice. Or, you have a medical services provider, a one-person operation for mental health or massage therapy. You have QB users that will do their own payroll, but want you to do their fillings and monthly reconciliation and year end prep, all of which you go to their office, and/or use the same tool they use.

I have had lots of governmental clients, all of whom were using QB, because none of the little towns and water/sewer/fire districts would use something like Sage. It's a great market, if you know governmental accounting well enough to support the town clerks and citizen volunteers.


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"Level Up" is a gaming function, not a real life function.

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Highlighted
Level 12

"QBO I know is one,"

But that isn't meant for you. That is meant for you to access a data file that your QBO-using client has set up and is using. You would have access through the Accountant's Portal, where you also could have your own FEIN set up as a QBO user data file, or not. Your QBO-using client sends you an Accountant Invite.

It really depends on the significance of the data you intend to manage and the services you intend to offer.

Are you only intending to be "doing books" for the clients, so everything is inhouse and under your control? Are you working with their bookkeeper, where they do a lot of things for themselves? Will you support clients that have POS? How that data is used and managed and handed off will matter for which tools and functions you will use. You would want to eliminate redundant handling of POS data.

For instance, you might want to use QB desktop or online for your own business. It has more management and operating functions than "an accounting package" because it is a business management program. That's why it goes far beyond using debits and credits. As an example:

Your business includes general bookkeeping, payroll, business valuations, and you have multiple people working for you, and you have multiple charge rates by person and service offered, and want to be able to set up, use, and report on all those options. This includes Quantity, rates, person doing the work, client done for, and all of this is what QB excels at. You might manage your own firm using QB, but use Sage for large "accounting" functions for those clients.

And other services you offer might include Supporting QB Clients. You might have some clients that use QB Desktop and bring you their files, for you to work with, and for you to give back "changes" and that requires you to be using the QB Desktop Accountant Edition (regular or Enterprise, or both) to match the file they brought you. That also means you would keep each year, such as right now, 2020 is coming out, but you would want 2019 and 2018. You would skip installing or supporting clients using 2017, since you can convince them they should move to 2020, anyway. However, Intuit will support QB 2017 until May of 2020. This is a Huge Market, so make a decision as to if this is part of what you intend to offer.

For instance: you have a retailer that has a POS system, which integrates into QB and they use that in their backoffice. Or, you have a medical services provider, a one-person operation for mental health or massage therapy. You have QB users that will do their own payroll, but want you to do their fillings and monthly reconciliation and year end prep, all of which you go to their office, and/or use the same tool they use.

I have had lots of governmental clients, all of whom were using QB, because none of the little towns and water/sewer/fire districts would use something like Sage. It's a great market, if you know governmental accounting well enough to support the town clerks and citizen volunteers.


*******************************
"Level Up" is a gaming function, not a real life function.

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Level 4
I saw Sage Intacct is an option. So you are saying use QBO or Desktop for my own practice and to support client's who use it as well? Do you ever use QB and Sage for the same client or do you only use Sage for clients that have large number of employees, POS, etc? Wonder of Sage integrates with QBO in some ways.
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Level 15

Sage

I want to stay healthy so I am social distancing from Intuit.
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Level 4
what does it do for you? Do you do payroll for your clients, if so, who do you use?
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Level 15
We pretty much got out of the payroll business a number of years ago.  I use Sage for our own in house accounting, for a couple of non-profits that I am the treasurer for, and for year end work for a couple of clients.
I want to stay healthy so I am social distancing from Intuit.
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Level 8

Sage.... much much better than Quickbooks

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Level 8
..we do payroll for multiple clients.. you can have up to 50 companies under my plan.  we do some actual payroll, and lots of compilations that we enter after the fact payroll and other incomes and expenses. Great for w2s, 1099s  etc.  Used for many years now. Best accountant friendly software out there in my opinion.
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Level 15
Accountants like Sage.  Folks that don't know debits and credits from door knobs and hub caps choose QuickBooks.
I want to stay healthy so I am social distancing from Intuit.
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Level 15
"... Folks that don't know debits and credits"
DR on the left, CR on the right, correct ?
Or is it DR by the door, CR by the window?
Former Chump... umm.... AllStar.
If a post answers your question, click on *Accept as solution* for future searches
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Level 15
Everybody knows the credits go on the window side. :stuck_out_tongue_winking_eye::stuck_out_tongue_winking_eye:
I want to stay healthy so I am social distancing from Intuit.
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Level 14
That's how I learned it. :smile::smile:

ex-AllStar
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Level 12
As some people here might remember, my father was a tax preparer (as EA and not as a CPA; he also was a Labor Negotiator) and a Lacerte user; but for accounting, he used Quicken. He used it for his own entity and for taking client paperwork and building their tax year. That's why it matters what you intend to be offering as your service. That's my point. It's like any set of tools; a plumber and an electrician have a few tools in common, and many specific to their own profession.
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"Level Up" is a gaming function, not a real life function.
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Level 12

You would use one accounting tool for the FEIN's financial data. You would use whatever they use, when you are working with them cooperatively, so that there is a provision for data to go back and forth. You would use whatever tool you want, when you are working with their data and your office is solely responsible for managing their data on behalf of the client, and typically presenting via reporting. You would not mix accounting packages for the same data; there is no need to use more than one tool of the type.

You would not use POS, but learn to understand their use of their POS and their data reporting. I bring this up because I support a few QB consultants (Pro Advisors) with clients using POS, and more often than not, the problem we are researching comes down to the end users not understanding the requirements for POS operation, not using the checkout process correctly, not handling the sales taxes setup, and then the accounting is a mess.

For instance, a "The UPS Store" franchise has the requirement to use the UPS software for POS and the accounting structure integrates to the QB file, but that has very specific requirements you cannot mess with. Print shops and NAPA, etc, have similar requirements.


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"Level Up" is a gaming function, not a real life function.
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