Cloud Accounting, From Beginning to End

Intuit® ProConnect™ News Cloud tax preparation

In my previous article, “Make Your Life Easier … Leverage Technology,” I mentioned how QuickBooks® Online Accountant (QBOA) is quickly becoming the “smartphone” for accountants and their practices. QBOA is becoming the place for tax professionals and accountants to work, grow and collaborate with their clients.


That is a question I get asked a lot when visiting with tax pros across the country. When you think about the number of applications it takes to run an office, it makes sense to ask that question! There could be dozens, and the majority of the time, these applications do not work together. However, when you take a step back and review the process, it can be broken down into four parts that feed off each other to provide a seamless, end-to-end process: QBOA, workflow management, books to tax and Intuit® ProConnect™ Tax Online.

QuickBooks Online Accountant – QBOA is the centerpiece. This is the core of the whole process. Without QBOA, the entire process breaks down. QBOA gives you the ability to easily connect with your small business clients and become the trusted advisor they need. QBOA not only increases the collaboration between the accountant and the small business; it is also a collaboration tool for the firm. QBOA is a firm-wide application that allows for all members of your staff to get connected – and stay connected – with your clients. Once connected, those staff members have the ability to grow and expand their knowledge through the QuickBooks ProAdvisor® Certification and Advanced Certification process.

Workflow Management – Your work is extremely deadline-driven, and there always seems to be another deadline around the corner. The process to track deadlines, and the work to meet those deadlines, is very challenging and stressful. Located inside QBOA, “work” gives accountants the confidence that nothing falls through the cracks. You now have the ability to create projects and tasks, and assign those projects and tasks to the different staff members in your office. While keeping your staff on track to meet critical deadlines, it is also important to keep your clients on track as well. “Work” gives you the ability to set deadlines for your clients and securely share documents related to those deadlines.

Books to Tax – One of the newest accountants’ tools located inside QBOA is “trial balance utility,” built by accountants and only for accountants to help save valuable time during tax time and at year end. The trial balance utility feature is built directly into QBOA, allowing quick access client information and the ability to make any year-end adjustments that will automatically be updated in the QuickBooks Online file. Trial balance also offers the ability to directly save any documents or work papers related to your clients’ books. Trial balance, in my opinion, is where the magic happens. This is where you can assign all the numbers of a client’s books to a line item of a tax return that will be completed in ProConnect Tax Online.

ProConnect Tax Online – There is no better place to wrap up the process than ProConnect Tax Online. Tax time is one of the most stressful times of the year. ProConnect Tax Online is a 100 percent cloud-based tax software focused on online integration to reduce the pain of client data collection and data entry into the tax return. With integration to QBOA through the trial balance feature in Intuit Link, a built-in portal, ProConnect Tax Online is truly coming through on reducing that pain of data collection and entry. As QBOA is the foundation to process, ProConnect Tax Online is the closure that all accountants have been looking for.

This is only the beginning stages of cloud accounting. QBOA is laying the foundation where you can work, grow and collaborate with their clients. Now is the time to invest in that strong foundation and plan for the future.