What is your biggest technology need for 2007?

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Better backup solutions for our customers. Tapes are still expensive and unreliable for the most part. We are constantly being asked about viable alternatives. Most customers are comfortable with off-site storage, but the cost is still considered a little on the high side by most, and size limitations generally rule out DVD/CD media formats. Bryan L. Wilton

InterDyn Progressive Group

Houston, Texas

Partner Insights

An integrated practice management application. The CPA industry has been offered applications which meet their professional service needs, workpaper management, deadline tracking, write-up solutions, tax preparation all in integrated systems which share appropriate data. With most CPA firms having less than 15 or 20 employees, many of these systems are reasonably priced. Reseller practices are more based on project management and the related billing functions, which must be tied to support tracking, lead development, and opportunity management. For us, a fully featured CRM is required, but needs to be tied to a system which manages both support and implementation departments and the related billing functions. We have yet to see a truly integrated system at a reasonable price.

Gary C. Crouch, CPA, CITP, MCP

Crouch, Slavin & Co.

Tulsa, Okla.

To beef up training for our development staff. We will concentrate on delivering services around Microsoft technologies like SharePoint, InfoPath, CRM and Business Scorecard Manager. The release of Microsoft Office 2007 will spawn a huge demand for professional services around these products.

Steve Lublin, CPA

InterDyn CFO Consulting

Lublin, Fla.

Evaluation, testing for compatibility, and deployment of Microsoft's Vista operating system. With Microsoft finally coming to market with Vista, it is inevitable that all new PCs that we'll be acquiring in 2007 will come pre-loaded with the new OS. The options are slim: We could hold out, wipe those new machines clean, and load XP or we could take the initiative and start testing for compatibility with Vista. At WS+B, we've decided to take the latter approach and take a look at how this new OS works with the many apps found in a typical CPA firm (time and billing, tax preparation, document management, engagement management, etc...). Although we have no plans to risk disruption of tax season, we'll be looking to deploy VISTA post-April 15, assuming all compatibility testing goes well.

James C. Bourke, CPA, CITP

WithumSmith+Brown

Red Bank, N.J.

Achieving a single fully integrated scheduling/time management solution that integrates with our Exchange server, our tax tracking application, our engagement management application for financial services, provides for consulting project management, and time and billing software.

Marilyn L. Lunnemann

CPA, CITP

Humes & Barrington

Kirkwood, Mo.

To get our Web site developed. We've got a blank page and our No. 1 goal is to get that up and running so we can get newsletters out and people can find us.

Linda Fletcher

A-Soft Professionals

Houston, Texas

The answer is mostly being addressed right now with all the WiFi and Wireless options: Greater access between my clients and my organization. The pocket PC is a great ideal, but not very functional regarding software administration.

Jackie E. Pruett

AMBR Technologies

Dyersburg, Tenn.

Faster, more reliable wireless. (However), I feel the biggest technology need in the future is learning to establish proper behaviors towards the onslaught of information and interruptions created by the technology we have embraced.

Mike Palmatier

Sikich LLP

Aurora, Ill.

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