With the corresponding adoption of web-based professional programs for accounting, tax preparation, payroll and other key practice services, professionals are also showing a willingness to trust their client data to these trusted technology vendors. The benefits of using hosted applications have been made clear: Decreased IT costs and management of the technologies and anytime/anywhere access to the data, allowing professionals to work from anywhere and be more responsive even in an increasingly mobile world. Technology experts also agree that even sensitive client data is safer when hosted by a secure data facility run by a trusted vendor. Likewise, the use of client portals for collaboration and file sharing is a sign of an increasing demand for secure modes of data transfer.
The result, eventually, will be that nearly every program run by an accounting practice will be a hosted application, and the data they use will also be securely hosted. That is, essentially, the definition of a cloud-based computing environment. We won’t get there next year, but the transition is underway.
WHAT ELSE CAN WE EXPECT?
Becoming a technology visionary isn’t a matter of simply deciding to be one, but rather the product of years, even decades, of good, bad and indifferent experiences. Just as wisdom acknowledges the value of incorrect decisions in the overall learning process, failures can also be valuable to better understanding a challenge and realizing success in the future.
The real visionaries and forward thinkers are professionals who’ve successfully adapted new technologies in their practices and the technology experts who develop those innovative technologies, putting their own time, effort, money and names on the line to help tax and accounting professionals be more productive and profitable in their practices. In the following pages, several of these technology leaders offer their views on what the current year has taught us and what we can expect in the near future.
- - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -
Click on one of these accounting technology leaders to see their assessment of the past year, and also what they see for the future.
CEO and Founder
BQE Software Inc.
- As the CEO and Founder of BQE Software Inc., Shafat Qazi possesses in-depth knowledge of business management and accounting practices for small and medium size professional service businesses such as accounting professionals, attorneys, architects and engineers. With over a decade of annual face-to-face customer visits, time set aside daily for customer and prospect conversations, and regular participation in conferences, Shafat gains insights and monitors trends in technology usage and management styles and capabilities. BQE Software also proactively reaches out to its customers to get their ‘Wish Lists’ of additional tools and capabilities they’d like the program to offer. This helps Shafat and BQE continue to develop new and innovative features, products and services.
CCH, a Wolters Kluwer business
- During his 28 years in the software, technology and information industries, Sabbatis has successfully led businesses domestically and globally including activities in strategic planning, sales, marketing, business development and consulting. Sabbatis is a featured speaker with a focus on technology, industry trends, leadership and business effectiveness. He’s presented at industry conferences as a keynote speaker at the CCH User Conference and at the Wolters Kluwer Global Leadership Forums. Previously, Sabbatis was the executive vice president of global sales and marketing for Wolters Kluwer Tax and Accounting focusing on the US, Canada and Asia Pacific businesses.
President, Professional Software & Services
Tax & Accounting, Thomson Reuters
- Jon Baron joined Thomson Reuters in 1992. Prior to his promotion to president in July of 1998, Baron held the position of vice president of Development and was responsible for the design and development of all Tax & Accounting products for Professional Software & Services. Baron has almost 35 years of technology development and management experience, all of it serving the accounting profession. He holds a Bachelor of Business Administration in Accounting from Siena College and a Master's of Business Administration from Boston University.