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CCH SFS Deals with Problems in ATX Upgrade

By Michael Cohn
February 4, 2013

A number of customers of CCH Small Firm Services have been complaining about problems with the latest version of the company’s ATX professional tax software, and the company said it has been working to address the bugs.

One reader wrote to Accounting Today that "the program released in early December was essentially inoperable, but an update promised in early January was supposed to fix the problem.  It helped very little.  Another update released today has increased the number of crashes reported on the ATX user message board."

Accounting Today also received another comment from a CPA last week who reported, "The 2012 ATX software continues to crash. I’m not able to complete any returns today and still can’t efile a return completed yesterday.  ATX has not posted a solution or even acknowledged the problem. I’d be more than happy to provide more specifics. I’m sure you understand how stressful this situation is to ATX users."

Other ATX users have also been reporting problems in comments left on Accounting Today (see Tax Preparers Struggle with Software Glitches).

Accounting Today contacted CCH SFS last week and received the following response Monday from product marketing manager Marie Jung:

“This is the first year of this platform for ATX software,” she wrote. “We worked with customers on the development of the platform, and we incorporated many of their suggestions in the software we shipped in November. Once the software shipped, we began an aggressive campaign to educate our customers on the enhancements and functionality changes they would experience as well as the configuration requirements of this platform.

“Many customers are successfully using the software to file their clients’ returns. We have already processed millions of returns. However, we understand the challenges this has caused many of our customers, and we are working diligently to resolve them and ensure a successful tax season for all of them.

“As customers have reported their issues to us, we have responded in a variety of ways, including accelerating the development and release of software updates. We have added more personnel to our phone lines to handle customer calls. If hold times have risen, it is because we are not trying to rush through every call as quickly as possible. We are staying on the line with each customer until we get all the questions answered. It can take time to handle calls that way, but we are trying to treat each customer the way we would want to be treated if we were calling.

“We have sent communications to the entire customer base, answered individual e-mails and made contact with customers who have reached out to us. As long as issues remain, we intend to use all of the resources at our disposal—e-mail, community boards, blogs and SFSTV—to communicate with our customers about their concerns.”

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