Time travel is an interesting concept and you’ll probably be hard-pressed to find someone that wouldn’t want to travel to the future. Or better yet, bring the future here.
That’s the idea behind two recently announced initiatives at Intuit. The provider of financial services software wants to help bring the future to accountants and small businesses today with its Firm of the Future website and second annual QuickBooks Connect.
“We’re kicking off the summer season with lots of educational opportunities for our customers. Accountants are busy through tax season when they have little time for anything else. We know they look forward to summer to get together with each other, sharpen their skills and earn CPE. We want to give them the opportunities to do just that,” said McGinnis.
Last year Intuit held its inaugural QuickBooks Connect, designed to bridge the gap between accountants, small business owners and developers. The conference featured guest speakers such as Martha Stewart and Magic Johnson and was well-received among the small business community. Capitalizing off the success of last year’s event, the company is bringing the conference back, November 2-4 at the San Jose, California Convention Center, with an even bigger focus on connecting attendees.
“We are at a unique position at the intersection of accountants, developers and small businesses. Leveraging this position, we intend to connect attendees with those who can help them succeed, educate them on how to grow their businesses, and inspire them to move into the future,” said Jim McGinnis, Vice President, Leader Accountant and Advisor Group.
Like the name suggests, QuickBooks Connect attendees can expect lots of opportunities to connect with each other. Sessions for accounting professionals will be focused on helping their firms become firms of the future and offer more than 20 hours of CPE credit. Accountants can expect to learn best practices from numerous industry experts. Tracks will focus on:
- Cloud Adoption – How to get your firm and your clients into the cloud and transition to the trusted advisor role.
- Growing Your Practice – How to transcend global borders and build their practice across national boundaries.
- Leveraging Social Media – How to develop a great website and leverage social media sites to extend their reach.
- Top 100 Firms – Larger firms will learn how they can implement Six Sigma and streamline their talent acquisition process to successfully run a large practice.
QuickBooks Connect will also feature many resources and tracks for the ever-growing self-employed and entrepreneurs sector. With on-demand services continuing to gain momentum, Intuit has been investing in this group with recent partnerships.
“The self-employed and entrepreneurs sector is quickly increasing, and we have identified a real need where they can use help. We want to include them in QuickBooks Connect and give them the resources they need to succeed as well,” said McGinnis.
Registration for QuickBooks Connect (www.QuickBooksConnect.com) opened this month. QuickBooks Connect will run for three days, November 2 through November 4, with the main event taking place on November 3. The main stage speakers include Brad Smith, Scott Cook and Bill Rancic. The complete speaker lineup will be announced at a later date.
Firm of the Future
A few years ago, leaders in the accounting profession were trying to educate firms on the Cloud. Now, professionals and small businesses are embracing cloud technology and integrating it into their businesses.
“The past few years, the industry has spent a lot of time talking about ‘the future of accounting.’ We have come to believe that the future is here, but it’s not distributed equally. There are accountants and their small business clients that are already operating in the future. We want to learn from those firms of the future so we can bring the future here into the present for all accountants and small businesses,” said McGinnis.
Intuit believes in the idea of future firms so much that it has built an entire curriculum around it. QuickBooks Connect attendees can expect a few sessions dedicated to this topic. In addition, Intuit has launched a new website, FirmOfTheFuture.com.
Visitors to the Firm of the Future website can expect an online resource and content center to help them navigate through growing their practice and their clients’ businesses. It will focus on helping professionals leverage technology to become the trusted advisor for their clients. Visitors can also learn best practices from highlighted “Firms of the Future.” In July, firms will also be able to self-identify themselves for embracing future technology. One lucky firm will be chosen and featured at QuickBooks Connect.
“We are in the privileged position to talk to accountants and help move the accounting profession into this future we see,” said McGinnis. “We know the cloud revolution is not bound by national boundaries. It’s a global phenomenon, and anyone that is not on board is missing an important opportunity for growing their business.”
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