The accounting profession has always been a community, with state societies, conferences, professional associations, credential groups and certain high-quality accounting publications allowing practitioners to benefit from the experience and wisdom of their peers. The Internet has taken that community online in a variety of guises, from bulletin boards to blogs. One of the latest, most comprehensive, and best-named of these cyber-iterations is iShade.com, an online network designed exclusively for accountants that recently finished its beta-testing and opened up to the profession as a whole. Once registered, users can build a network of peers; access a wide range of tools, from checklists and customized Excel spreadsheets to financial calculators and business development toolkits; connect with thought leaders; create a private, secure intranet for firm collaboration and communication; and more.
Comtax and CCH, a Wolters Kluwer business
www.comtaxit.com or http://cchgroup.com
The tax man is bad enough when there's just one of him, but some of the first people companies meet when they expand abroad will be other countries' tax men, with their wildly different rules, regs and requirements. This makes it crucial to plan ahead before venturing overseas, which is now easier for U.S. companies thanks to CCH's introduction here of Comtax System, a tax planning solution that lets users determine the most tax-efficient cross-border transactions, and build templates of tax-optimal company structures and organizations. Covering regulations in up to 129 countries, with over 400,000 international tax rates that are updated monthly, it should help companies make sure the tax men don't take it all.
Just like the real world
Once upon a time, the world of nonprofits and charities was viewed as a haven for those who couldn't handle the complexities and dog-eat-dog realities of the real world. No longer - nonprofits are expected to be just as competitive and efficient as for-profits, with finance and business management processes that are just as complex and stringent. Hence the addition of Serenic BudgetVision to Serenic's nonprofit financial software, Serenic Navigator. Disorganized spreadsheets no longer cut it in the nonprofit planning process; BudgetVision helps NFPs prepare and monitor budgets with real-time access to financial information, and round-the-clock access to the budgets through the Web. It lets users create multiple "what-if" scenarios, and automates and streamlines budget reviews and approvals. With tools like these professionalizing nonprofit management, it will soon lose its never-quite-accurate reputation as a more relaxed, undemanding environment - and its only attraction will be that it offers a chance to help people.
Logical Office Ltd.
You are, naturally, supremely professional when it comes to the accounting, tax and other services you offer clients, but how professional are you with everything else? All the other things that go into running a firm - like marketing, managing engagements and workflows, time tracking and billing, and document management - often don't receive the focus they deserve, and aren't handled with the same professionalism as the client services that they support. Logical Office's multi-function system can remedy a lot of that, with a whole host of tools for automating workflows, managing engagements, time and billing, creating and managing marketing campaigns, document management, and more.
New features on Bill.com
Bill.com continues to expand the capabilities of its on-demand accounts payable and receivable solutions, exposing potential for improvement that most AP and AR staff had never imagined possible. Its latest updates include unlimited cloud-based storage, so that in addition to bills and vendor documents, users can attach all sorts of useful financial documents - from contracts and service-level agreements to estimates and financial reports - to customers, invoices and chart-of-account entries. Users of Bill.com Receivables can also share these with customers through branded "payment portals," where customers can view all past invoices and shared documents, as well as find easy ways to pay by Bill.com ePayments, PayPal, or credit card. It's also now possible to transfer invoices from QuickBooks into Bill.com, and vice versa.
Two less reasons
SMB Advisor Program and Receipt Store
Just about everyone hates expense reports - employees hate submitting them, and employers hate processing and paying them. Expense management solution provider Concur is doing its best to make the whole thing less painful, and recently unveiled two new reasons to hate expense reports a little less. The first is its new Concur Advisor Program, which gives accountants and consultants tools and resources to help them help their clients hate a little less. Program members get a free subscription to Concur Breeze for two users, courses on best practices for travel and expense management, and unlimited support.
The second is Concur's new Receipt Store, which lets users e-mail images of receipts directly to a central repository, and then assign them to line-item expenses later, complementing its other digital receipt-handling tools that let users use images from smartphones, faxes and scanners, as well its E-receipts, where participating suppliers can send detailed electronic receipts that can be automatically matched with credit card and itinerary data.
New and improved!
Intuit Inc. has released the Intuit Online Payroll Mobile app as part of its Online Payroll service, allowing users to handle payroll through their iPhone, iPad or iPod Touch. ... Thomson Reuters has released the latest version of Mobile CS, the mobile app that lets users access Practice CS through Apple's mobile devices. New features include time and expense entry, mileage tracking, receipt tracking and a call timer. ... Fund E-Z Development Corp. has integrated Positive Pay, an automated fraud detection tool that prevents unauthorized checks from being paid, with its Fund E-Z Nonprofit Accounting Software.
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