RedGear Technologies — TaxWorks
From the May 2012 review of professional tax compliance systems (traditional workflow).
Best Fit: 1040-focused tax offices with occasional need for additional entities, particularly those wishing to offer integrated bank products, with bilingual options and remote data entry capabilities.
- Integrated support for bank products
- Client communication templates and e-mail integration
- Digital client tax organizers
- Data import from multiple accounting systems
- Built-in invoicing, AR and scheduling
- Bilingual option
- Optional tax planner and document management modules
- No client portals or file sharing
- Lacks tax automation tools (scan and populate)
- Limited tools for multi-preparer collaboration
The TaxWorks professional tax preparation system offers comprehensive capabilities for all federal and state income taxes, along with local income tax filings for New York City and some Ohio cities. The compliance package includes fixed asset management, client communication tools, taxpayer organizers and a tax practice management utility that can be used to support multiple offices or retail locations. Optional add-on modules include the ArkWorks paperless document management system and a fully-featured tax planner.
Core Product Functions/Features - 4.5 Stars
TaxWorks is offered in individual tax entity components, or in bundles that range from a 1040-only (with states) system, to the most comprehensive TaxWorks Platinum, which includes 1040, 1041, 1065, 1120, 1120S, all states, the tax planner and document management, with unlimited e-filing. The program supports multi-state taxpayer reporting associated with a single 1040. Additional tax compliance options are available for forms 706, 709, 990 and 5500.
The program’s primary workspace allows users to easily navigate between core system areas, such as client lists, asset management, e-file management tools, firm management functions, forms, diagnostics and add-on modules, along with system settings, alerts and help. Preparers can also quickly move between federal and state forms, or switch to a detailed view. The system’s client selection screens allow users to bring up tabbed lists based on individual or business entity type, and then to further refine searches by client ID or folder location, and to sort by name, SSN or multiple other data options. When creating new clients, users have the option to mask taxpayer IDs on all screens and reporting.
When working on a client return, TaxWorks opens a new window that displays a form replica work area in the main part of the screen, with form selection menu and search options on the left. A return summary view shows live data for items such as AGI, deductions, exemptions, EIC and refund or amount due. An additional screen shows the estimated Direct Deposit date of a client’s return.
Preparers have three data entry options: Advanced, Lite and EZ, plus a button for quickly switching to the Spanish language version. Each data input screen includes links to line-specific instructions and help. A quick return diagnostics feature can be launched using the Review icon on the toolbar. When viewing a client’s full engagement folder, a menu offers options for working on the forms, schedules and worksheets, as well as accessing customizable client letters, invoices and email functions.
The system includes the latest AMT rules and has an EIC due diligence checklist, and supports dependent income reporting. Preparers can quickly perform comparisons of MFJ vs. MFS.
Paperless Workflow - 4 Stars
The primary paperless capabilities in TaxWorks include unlimited e-filing, and printing of client returns and communications to PDF format. Additional tools are available in the optional document management system, which includes full encryption of stored files, PDF annotation tools, customizable filing options, document searching, integrated email functions and automated document retention management. The ArkWorks system integrates directly with, and is accessible from within, TaxWorks.