BEST FIRM FIT:
Good fit for top 50 firms, the Fortune 500, and those who need multi-office, multi-department support for the most complex returns. The only purely browser-based application reviewed.
- Designed for the most complex returns, including multi-state, multi-national firms
- Strong integration with GoFileRoom, CheckPoint and other Thomson Reuters tools
- Partial file lock-down available to reduce repetitive reviews on static information for last-minute changes to large returns
- Hosted model means no updates to install & less infrastructure to support
- Ability to handle the most complex options may make it too complicated for those who don’t need the functionality
- Requires Internet Explorer 7 or later
- Lack of a locally installed version may not appeal to some users
- Not appropriate for users in rural areas without reliable wired, high-speed Internet options
- One of the most expensive applications reviewed
GoSystem Tax RS was introduced in 1999 as the first web-based tax preparation system available to the profession. Since this introduction, GoSystem Tax RS has continued to be a leader in the evolution of web-based tax compliance systems. Designed for more complex and multi-tiered consolidation returns, the system offers a rich feature set to efficiently service the needs of clients in these situations. New features for tax year 2010 include enhancements to print preview modes, a new print system for trust returns, improvements to batch PDF printing for partnership and corporate returns, as well as the ability to directly link capital gain activity to Form 8453. Also new for this year is a Product Assistant Display, which, when activated, filters product notifications and updates to show only those items that are applicable to that particular return.
CORE PRODUCT FUNCTIONS/FEATURES
As previously mentioned, GoSystem Tax RS is a web-based application. Users access the software through Internet Explorer 7 or later, which is currently the only fully supported web browser. Once logged into the GoSystem Tax RS interface, client files can be located using numerous filter and sorting options. Preparers can narrow search results by return type, preparer, date filters and office location. Navigation within the client files is accomplished using a standard folder tree structure. Folders are broken down by major input categories (income, deductions, carryover info, etc.) with subfolders indicating available input screens and forms. While in Forms View, users can view the forms as populated by data input, and users and reviewers are able to drilldown to worksheets, calculation screens, as well as to underlying data input screens.
GoSystem Tax RS continues full support for all federal and applicable state and local tax compliance filings. Two features that are especially useful to new users are QuickTrack and QuickForm, which help users locate the input screens and forms associated with a specific issue. QuickTrack gives direct access to input screens by input type (interest, like-kind exchange, etc.) and QuickForm gives direct access to specific forms (Schedule B, Form 8824, etc.). Diagnostics are deeply integrated into the GoSystem Tax RS experience. Many diagnostics have direct links to underlying input screens to aid in correcting input errors or omissions. Any electronic filing that is rejected is routed directly to the preparer originating the return for resolution, resulting in more timely and knowledgeable responses to e-filing issues. 4.75
As part of the Thomson Reuters Enterprise Suite, GoSystem Tax RS is tightly integrated with the trial balance, engagement, research and document management products within the suite. In addition, GoSystem Tax RS also integrates with many products within the Thomson Reuters CS Professional Suite, which has traditionally targeted the small and mid-sized accounting firm market. GoSystem Tax RS includes a trial balance module that interfaces with Thomson Reuters products as well as third-party software, including CaseWare Working Papers, ProSystem fx Engagement, ProSystem fx Trial Balance and Microsoft Excel, among others. Integration is also supported with common tools and subscriptions, including BNA for tax planning, the Thomson Reuters Checkpoint online research platform, and e-Form RS, Thomson Reuters’ online forms library. 5
In addition to closely integrating with Thomson Reuters’ GoFileRoom and FileCabinet CS products, GoSystem Tax RS also integrates with EMC2 Documentum. Both Copanion GruntWorx Populate and SurePrep 1040Scan Pro may also be used for scan-and-populate technology, greatly decreasing the amount of manually entered data. The application includes native PDF generation capabilities and can generate a fully bookmarked and indexed digital copy of the return. Supporting documents can be generated from within the software.
GoSystem Tax RS has several options for paperless review, as well. Analytical review screens for returns show prior year and current year information with the amount and percentage difference between the two, as well as any necessary adjustments made by the program. The tax review screen provides drill-down capabilities to input screens with all the detail necessary to determine how data is flowing through the return. After the return has been reviewed, the reviewer has the option to lock down portions of data not expected to change, which could reduce additional review time if there are any last-minute changes to other areas. The partnership module has an extensive review of all partner and partnership data. This is helpful for partnerships with a large number of partners and helps determine which K-1s might need adjustments. K-1 data within GoSystem Tax RS can also be transferred from the business return to the K-1 holder’s return, again reducing manual data entry. 4.75
GoSystem Tax RS can be accessed through virtually any Windows computer connected to the Internet with Internet Explorer 7 or higher. Since the software is hosted online, client files are frequently backed up, with up to 6 previous file versions of each client file usually available. The application includes numerous enterprise-grade security options that can be set at the user, office, department or company level, including IP range limitations (e.g. office, home, mobile, etc.), time of day restrictions, and return group limitations, among others.
Another feature within GoSystem Tax RS is the support for simultaneous multiple user access to a return. This allows multiple staff to work on different parts of a complex multi-state or consolidated return. If a problem arises with a client file, users can allow a GoSystem Tax RS support team member to access the file while the staff continue to input information into other areas. Additionally, through the MyTaxInfo electronic organizer module, users can generate custom organizers and assist clients with questions on their online organizer. 4.75
EXECUTIVE SUMMARY & PRICING
GoSystem Tax RS is designed for large, multi-office, high-volume tax and accounting firms. The application is especially well suited to those working with the most complex and issue-laden returns, including high net worth individuals, multi-tiered consolidated returns, and taxpayers with compliance requirements in every state and many international jurisdictions. Pricing starts at $2,500 and includes 50 returns and five user accounts. Full pricing is based on the number of returns processed and number of users needed. Custom pricing options are also available.
2011 OVERALL RATING 4.75
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