Late last year, Luis Sanchez, the leader of Intuit’s ProAdvisor Program, transitioned to a new position within the company passing the ProAdvisor torch to Chris Hamilton to lead the way. Hamilton has been busy carrying on the initiatives that were already in place for the ProAdvisor Program, while simultaneously planning for the program’s future.
As Global Leader of the QuickBooks ProAdvisor Team, Hamilton is most excited to work up close and personal with some of QuickBooks Online’s biggest advocates and product leaders.
“I have a lot of passion for our clients and customers, and I’m really looking forward to continuing to connect with ProAdvisors. Luis Sanchez achieved great things with the ProAdvisor Program, and I want to continue to double-down on the work that he started when he was in this role,” said Hamilton.
Under Sanchez’ reign, the QuickBooks ProAdvisor program saw tremendous growth, more than doubling the number of QuickBooks ProAdvisors to 130,000 worldwide. Intuit has also launched and revamped several versions of QuickBooks Online, as well as various ProAdvisor certifications and training. Hamilton has no plans to slow down this momentum either. He plans to continue to explore and roll out new approaches and offerings for the ProAdvisor Program, including a new QuickBooks Advanced Certification that will launch on March 28, 2016.
“The areas that the team has focused on in the past have been spot on and we will continue to focus in those areas. As a result of their efforts, we have award-winning training and certification opportunities. We are also working on increasing the number of partnerships with third-party apps in efforts to help accountants grow their practice online,” said Hamilton.
Intuit has built an entire ecosystem focused on helping accountants and their clients get onboard with their third-party app partners to eliminate pain points for small business owners. It has also worked hard to create a harmonious and seamless experience within this ecosystem. So, it’s no surprise that its ProAdvisor program is closely aligned to helping accounting firms become a Firm of the Future. Intuit has worked to deeply integrate its ProAdvisor program into QuickBooks Online Accountant and plans to continue to do so in future versions. Every aspect of the integration between QuickBooks Online Accountant and the ProAdvisor Program leverages one of the three pillars of a Firm of the Future: embracing the Cloud, being a trusted advisor and staying connected. In fact, Intuit’s Find-A-ProAdvisor directory helps ProAdvisors connect to new small business clients.
“The whole idea behind getting connected and growing your practice is really about ensuring that accountants have a presence online. Firms need a website because, as Jim McGinnis has repeatedly said, ‘The web is the new lobby.’ That’s why we are really focused on revamping our online directory to not only help find leads for accountants, but also the best possible match between small businesses and accountants. It’s really all moving towards the Firm of the Future,” said Hamilton.
One of the many benefits available to ProAdvisors who are already using QuickBooks Online Accountant is free life app licenses for using one of their partner apps and discounts that they can share with their clients. Intuit encourages ProAdvisors to get connected with the apps because they can now get deeper insight into their clients’ workflows that previously may have been unavailable to them. Another benefit is being able to see firsthand how these apps work before recommending them to clients.
“We are thinking very deeply about how we can continue to invest in our ProAdvisor offerings, along with the entire QuickBooks experience for our customers. As they continue to grow their businesses, we want to empower their accountants to move to QuickBooks Online Accountant, if they are not already using the software. The deep integration between our ProAdvisor program and QuickBooks Online Accountant provides great benefits that can help accountants take their firms to the next level to become Firms of the Future,” said Hamilton.
Intuit is also investing in the marketing resources and tools it provides to help accountants get online and build their practice. The resources are designed to give accountants best practices for social media and focus on building and establishing a business presence online, as well as tips for gaining followers and following others. The company regularly revamps the resources and tools that are available in its ProAdvisor Center.
“The market is constantly shifting, which is why being a Firm of the Future is so important. You have to be ready for and willing to embrace the change that’s coming. For us, that means continually talking to ProAdvisors and putting our ear to the ground. We want accountants to know that we’re listening, and if we’re not meeting their needs, we want to hear about it,” said Hamilton.
For more information on the ProAdvisor program, the new certification, as well as FAQs, visit the Intuit Accountants News Central (http://blog.accountants.intuit.com).
See inside February 2016
A Tech Message to the Accounting Profession: We’ll Be Here For You
Technology will continue to evolve, as will you, but you can take a deep breath and move at your own pace, and new solutions will be there for you whenever you are ready for them.