Is Your Tax Workflow Digital Yet?

Pixelated blue text "workflow" on binary code backgroundMake sure it's not just your admins using the tools.

By Roman H. Kepczyk

The most important aspect of transitioning the firm’s tax process to a digital environment is managing electronic files that are no longer physically viewable in assorted stacks around the office.

MORE ON TECH SPENDING: Be Strict About Document Retention | Document Management Requires Firm Standards | Why Unified Messaging Matters | Get in Front of Application Updates | Why You Need Offsite Backup
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Preventing Document Retention Headaches

Last Day words written in red marker ink on a calendar date and circled as a reminder of the deadlineBe sure to set expiration dates.

By Roman H. Kepczyk

Managing digital files is in many ways similar to managing paper files in that the firm must have standards for who can

  • create a document,
  • add to or edit a document,
  • file it and eventually
  • purge the file.

MORE ON TECH SPENDING: Document Management Requires Firm Standards | Back Up Your Bandwidth | How to Choose Which Microsoft Office Version to Use | Time to Replace a Server? Consider the Cloud | Monitor Real Estate: More Is Better | Why You Need an Independent Security Review

 

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Document Management Requires Firm Standards

Businessman jumping with papers stuck to himTry to project your future space needs.

By Roman H. Kepczyk

The network drive in most firms is not very well organized and requires the most cleanup.

MORE ON TECH SPENDING: The 4 Types of Firm Knowledge | Which Wireless? | Remote Access Takes Planning | Transitioning to Windows 10 | Desktops vs. Laptops | Keep Your Tech Budget Updated | Mandate Training Programs | Turn to Portal Encryption
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This happens because it is usually managed with Microsoft Windows Explorer, which allows almost anyone to create or access a file anywhere on the drive. Unfortunately, there is seldom a firm standard that is adhered to, allowing users to create files with any naming convention they want and store it anywhere they please. The result can be files that are hard to find and slow to search across the network.
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The 4 Types of Firm Knowledge

KPI business management with key performance indicator presented by businessman... and how to capture them.

By Roman H. Kepczyk

Firm knowledge and information is usually stored in one of four “buckets.”

MORE ON TECH SPENDING: Which Wireless? | Why Unified Messaging Matters | Get in Front of Application Updates | Why You Need Offsite Backup | Use Scanners to Capture Source Documents | Develop Monthly IT Flash Reports | Centralize Contact Administration | Is Your AP Digital Yet? | A Better Way to Handle Time & Expenses | How the Best CPA Firms Capture Best Tech Practices in Procedures Manuals
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The most obvious is within the accounting applications themselves where tax, audit and accounting programs store client files in a format that can only be accessed with that program. Files are usually indexed and accessed in designated directories so there is not much the firm can do about moving these files.
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Which Wireless?

Blue WiFi symbol over a map backgroundWhat do your employees need? Hotspots.

By Roman H. Kepczyk

One of the revolutions in remote connectivity is happening within your cell phone as digital cellular providers have beefed up and expanded their networks to provide reliable Internet access to remote devices.

MORE ON TECH SPENDING: Why Unified Messaging Matters | Back Up Your Bandwidth | How to Choose Which Microsoft Office Version to Use | Time to Replace a Server? Consider the Cloud | Monitor Real Estate: More Is Better | Why You Need an Independent Security Review | Standardize QuickBooks Support (and Bring Your Clients) | Remote Deposit Saves in Several Ways | How Efficient Are Your Audits?
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Today, the vast majority of the U.S. and Canada has access to the Internet through the 4G digital cellular network at speeds of 1MBps or more, which is adequate for remote access to most applications, particularly those hosted by cloud providers.
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Why Unified Messaging Matters

Voicemail word cloudConsider tying in the email system, too.

By Roman H. Kepczyk

I've said that firms should strive to capture all data in a digital format at its “root” source. This goes for services such as the firm’s fax and voicemail systems as well.

MORE ON TECH SPENDING: Back Up Your Bandwidth | Remote Access Takes Planning | Transitioning to Windows 10 | Desktops vs. Laptops | Keep Your Tech Budget Updated | Mandate Training Programs | Turn to Portal Encryption | Deliver Reports Digitally (Even In-House) | Tech Trends for Auditors
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Traditional inbound faxes are usually printed from a fax machine and then hand-delivered to the recipient’s desk. In some cases, this image is actually rescanned and emailed to the recipient.
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Back Up Your Bandwidth

Technology center with fiber optic equipmentAnd review your options regularly.

By Roman H. Kepczyk

The Internet has undoubtedly had a profound impact on firm communications. It has become the primary driver toward the next generation of accounting applications that run entirely on the web through "cloud" computing.

MORE ON TECH SPENDING: Remote Access Takes Planning | Get in Front of Application Updates | Why You Need Offsite Backup | Use Scanners to Capture Source Documents | Develop Monthly IT Flash Reports | Centralize Contact Administration | Is Your AP Digital Yet? | A Better Way to Handle Time & Expenses
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Before we get ahead of ourselves discussing cloud opportunities, we have to assess how the Internet is used within your firm today.
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