QUICKBOOKS LIVE COMMUNITY – INTUIT
The other major technology vendors in the tax and accounting space also offer online communities geared toward helping their users get more from their programs and collaborate. For QuickBooks users, Intuit offers the QuickBooks Live Community, a website where professionals interact and discuss program usage, engagement strategies and business topics in forums that are divided into groups for the type of user and the program. The Community is accessible from within QuickBooks Premier Accountant Edition, as well as from Lacerte, ProSeries and Pro-Line, Intuit’s new web-based professional tax compliance system. It allows users to seek advice and receive answers from other users or support staff while still working inside the program. Intuit also has the free online tax research website TaxAlmanac.org, which offers a Wikipedia-style reference and collaboration system for tax professionals.
CCH Community – CCH, a Wolters Kluwer business
Immediately after the deadline for the print edition of this issue, CCH announced the creation of its new CCH Community, an online resource for users of CCH's systems that provides these tax, accounting and audit professionals with resources and the ability to interact with their peers. Visitors to the CCH User Community will be able to share problems, solutions and best practices in discussion forums, receive information and analysis from thought leaders, take advantage of network capabilities and give feedback and receive updates on CCH products and services.
PEACHTREE ACCOUNTING USER COMMUNITY – SAGE
Sage offers an online community that doesn’t require usage of their accounting products, which can be helpful if a professional is using Peachtree in his or her own practice or even if they aren’t using it but have clients who use the system and may need some support when it comes to program functions. The site also provides links to forums for practice areas, blogs and advice for practitioners and business owners.
DRAKE SOFTWARE FORUMS – DRAKE SOFTWARE
Users of Drake Software’s tax, practice management, document management and client write-up systems can access and participate in online forums moderated by Drake staff. Users frequently share program tips and business strategies, and can ask questions of support staff or of other users.
ACCOUNTANTSWORLD COMMUNITY – ACCOUNTANTSWORLD
While AccountantsWorld offers a suite of web-based and traditionally installed programs for professional accountants, the vendor’s website also offers a large array of free research, tools, white papers, best practices, tax and accounting news, and discussion groups divided into categories for various practice areas. Additional sub-groups allow users to discuss specific issues involving taxation of various entities, HR, payroll and practice management.
MyATX & TAXWISE TV – CCH SMALL FIRM SERVICES
Online user communities are also offered by CCH Small Firm Services for users of its ATX and TaxWise professional compliance systems. The sites provide similar forums for users to get tips and advice from other professionals, along with access to training and support resources. Through TaxWise TV, professionals can also watch brief educational videos that cover important taxation issues and program tips.
NETSUITE USER COMMUNITY – NETSUITE
The provider of the widely used on-demand (web-based) accounting, CRM and ecommerce NetSuite offers an online community for its customers, solution providers, developers and employees. By bringing all of these groups together, the NetSuite User Community provides them with the ability to interact and share their wealth of deep product knowledge and extensive technical expertise. Members of the community also share best practice ideas, discuss third-party solutions and participate in other networking opportunities. With a worldwide user base, the community also offers users the ability to connect with potential international partners.
TAXWORKS FORUMS – REDGEAR TECHNOLOGIES
TaxWorks offers a company blog and user forums for its registered users, with topic-specific forums for general product information as well as support and message boards for e-filing, document management, training and other topics. Through the company’s blog, TaxWorks staff offer additional tips and product advice, from data input sheets and generation of financial reports, to invoicing and using the tax program’s built-in scheduler.
OTHER SOFTWARE VENDORS/PROGRAMS
In addition to these larger developers of professional tax and accounting suites, many developers of programs not limited to the profession also offer user communities. Whether using a program in-house for client services or seeking advice on a program in order to help a client who uses it, these online resources offer additional means for a professional to find the answers he or she needs.