Cloud-Based Tax Practice Guide –
– Leveraging Digital Tax Document Automation

cloud-based tax practice document automation is DA bomb!Cloud-based tax preparation document automation solutions allow
practices to move into entirely cloud-based tax practice modalities

digital tax prep guideTax preparation has evolved considerably from the old era of service bureaus, couriers and paper forms. Computer-based tax applications permitted tax returns to be prepared entirely in-house. And now, thanks to advanced Optical Character Recognition (OCR), source documents like W-2s, K1s and brokerage statements can be scanned and automatically bookmarked and organized.  From that the critical tax data can be directly exported to tax software without redundant manual entry.

- See also: White Paper: Digital Tax Practice Cloud

If your goal is improved efficiency, the time and work you save not needing to organize your files and data into tax software is crucial, but it isn’t the most critical part of a modern cloud-based tax practice.

Cloud-Based Tax Practice Files and Workflow

With most cloud-based tax practice document automation systems the process begins like this: First you scan the paper docs from your tax client and then you process the scanned files through OCR.  The end result is an organized PDF file that can be opened in a PDF editor like Adobe Acrobat or Nitro PDF.  

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White Paper: Digital Tax Practice Cloud Hosting
– A Paperless Environment, the Flexibility of Paper

digital tax practice basics to advanced for serious digital tax practitioners

                                                  - Image credit: Fast Company Digital Tax Prep Tools

A Key Component of the Digital Tax Practice is OCR

Tax preparation has come a long way since the days of service bureaus, couriers and paper forms. Personal computer-based tax software allowed tax returns to be prepared entirely in-house. Now, some tax document automation solutions are allowing firms to embrace a completely digital tax practice. Through Optical Character Recognition (OCR), source documents like W-2s, K1s and brokerage statements can be scanned and automatically bookmarked and organized. Then, the relevant tax data from those source documents can be exported to tax software.

digital tax practice sureprep white paperIf your goal is increased efficiency, the time you save with a Digital Tax Practice by not having to organize your files and key punch data into tax software is important, very important, but it isn’t the most important component of a truly automated digital tax practice. To understand the most important component, think about how and when a 1040 tax return flows through your office.

File Types and Workflow in a Digital Tax Practice

With most tax document automation solutions the process works like this: You scan the paper documents that were provided by your client then you run the scanned documents through OCR.

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Intuit SmartVault Integration Announced

intuit smartvault integration announced recentlyintuit smartvault integration is safe and secure from cyber attacks and intrusionsCloud9 solution partner SmartVault is a cloud-based document management system (DMS) that works with a growing ecosystem of products, providing a single full-featured repository for yours (and your clients’) documents.

The Intuit SmartVault integration  provides essential DMS for both Intuit ProSeries and Intuit Lacerte tax products, supplanting Intuit’s own DMS product that has been part of the Lacerte and ProSeries products in prior years.

The Intuit SmartVault integration provides users of ProSeries and Lacerte with a best-in-class cloud-based document management system, plus the addition of a secure client portal for transferring documents.

Prior to the Intuit SmartVault integration Intuit used various DMS features in a cacophony of products that it supports, and therein lies the rub. 

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Webinar Thurs May 1st: Tax & Accounting Success on Cloud
- Best Practices for Moving Tax Season to the Cloud

Tax Practice Cloud Hosting for serious digital tax practitioners

                                                  - Image credit: Fast Company

If you’ve just pushed through another tax season on excess paper and in-house servers this webinar is for YOU. Cloud-based tax and accounting systems not only make life easier, a modern day practice can build new revenues and offer advanced technologies to clients. Join Kacee Johnson, Cloud9’s Executive VP, on Thurs May 1st as she covers best practices, lessons learned, and how to make tax season easier next year. She will review the latest and greatest in cloud computing tax and accounting tech and how Cloud9 clients are taking advantage of new technology to save time and money. Webinar will include a brief Q&A and all SMB owners and managers are welcome.

- Register for Webinar: Thursday, May 1st, 2014 @ 11am-12pm PST

2013 Readers' Choice for AccountingThe technological advances in tax and accounting practice cloud hosting have made in-house server and IT headaches a thing of the past. Hosting tax, accounting and business applications  through a managed service provider, gives accountants and business owners instant connectivity from any computer or tablet with internet access to their files, folders, data and applications.

- Register for Webinar: Thursday, May 1st, 2014 @ 11am-12pm PST

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Take a Section 179 Software Tax Deduction in 2013

Section 179 cloud software tax deduction 2013

A software tax deduction afforded by IRC Section 179 has been enhanced for 2013.

Remember Section 179 this year and get your new software tax deduction if you purchase additional applications before year’s end.  

This little enhancement of the IRC is a great tax advantage presently available for small business owners. Section 179 doesn’t increase the total amount you can deduct, but it provides for the entire depreciation deduction in one year, rather than a little at a time over the term of the asset’s in service life.

If you have been considering adding or changing software to increase productivity and streamline the operations for your business, you may find 2013 is the right time to do this.  Although software cost is generally amortized over a 36 month period, if purchased or financed  in 2013, software costing up to $500,000 may be deductible against income this year.

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Tax Application Hosting on the Cloud

Tax Application hosting on Cloud

Tax application hosting – No longer limited to QuickBooks and Microsoft software cloud hosting!

Cloud9 private virtual server solutions provide clients with a private cloud to host all their desktop office, organizational, and financial applications including tax application hosting, time & billing programs, CRM systems etc. Tax application hosting allows users to access the programs anytime, anywhere via internet access and work remote with their tax applications being hosted at a SSAE 16 Type II Data Center.

See related: Cloud9 Real Time has been honored with the 2012 & 2013 Reader’s Choice Award by CPA Practice Advisor for Favorite Accounting ASP/Hosted/Cloud Solution Provider

tax application hosting by cloud9 voted #1 by more accountants and tax preparersWhy would you want to host your tax software? A multitude of reasons! The most common reason for hosting tax software is that the firm does not want to buy and maintain a local server. Second, the firm has remote employees or the need to work outside the physical office on their programs. Finally, the firm desires to have a more secure infrastructure then the traditional client-server infrastructure.

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White Paper: Paperless Tax Preparation w/ Paper Flexibility

Paperless Tax Preparation White Paper

With our third and biggest annual Cloud Summit behind us, we will be recapping the benefits proffered by the Summit’s showcase vendors, beginning with an overview and white paper from SurePrep, a cloud technology that garnered a lot of excitement among attendees for its paperless tax preparation platfor..

Integrating traditional paper-based processes with paperless tax preparation technology offers tax and accounting practitioners the organizational and review flexibility of paper plus the efficiency of a digital workflow

White Paper author David Wyle, CPA, leads the SurePrep team as president and CEO. Prior to SurePrep, he founded ePace! Software and was a CPA with the accounting firm of Coopers & Lybrand. Over the years, David has emerged as a leading voice in the tax and accounting profession, specifically in the areas of the paperless office.

SUREPREP paperless work flow on cloud9Over the last decade, the accounting and tax professions have undergone a slow and steady evolution to the paperless office—a transition that began in the area of audit. As audit professionals started to reap the rewards of more efficient, paperless tax preparation workpapers, tax practitioners took note and soon followed suit—putting the tax department at the center of the paperless movement.

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Tax Preparation Software Survey Highlights

2012 tax preparation software survey

2012 AICPA tax preparation software survey highlights

“Cloud Computing a growing trend”

Over 6,000 certified public accountants assessed the tax prep applications they used to prepare year 2011 tax returns, indicating what they did and did not appreciate about their tax software in a recent survey by the AICPA.

This year, the tax software survey also examined newer methods of utilizing tax software, finding that cloud computing, while not yet proliferate, is a distinct relative shift among tax return preparers.

See also:  Tax Software Hosting and Cloud Computing

Overall user bliss was close to those surveyed in 2011, with the ratings for most applications hovering near the 4.3 (out of 5) average for all tax prep softwares (in 2011, all apps also averaged 4.3). UltraTax won the overall #1 spot again this year at 4.5, narrowly besting out Lacerte (4.4)

NEW TAX PREP TECHNOLOGIES

For 2012, the survey examined respondents’ adoption of new trends in technology, such as cloud computing. Cloud computing has achieved common phenomenon status outside the field of tax prep software, both in consumer software applications and in business.

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Automating the Tax Preparation Workload

SUREPREP

Cloud9 Real Time and SurePrep® have teamed to offer a series of free webinars for accountants and tax preparers

This featured new 3-Part webinar series is aimed to educate accountants and tax preparers on moving to paperless, the cloud and automating the tax preparation process. Cloud9 Real Time and SurePrep®, the creators of 1040SCAN tax document automation technology, have partnered to offer a real treat to accounting professionals: a free 3 part webinar Series.

The first of the 3 webinars is centered on The Flexibility of Paper in a Cloud Environment on September 25, 2012 at 11am PDT. Hosts include David Wyle CPA, CEO of SurePrep®; and Kacee Johnson MBA, Executive Vice President of Cloud9 Real Time.

Cloud9 Virtual Office Cloud SolutionsCLICK TO REGISTER:  Tues Sept 25th 11AM – 12PM PDT

All webinar registrants will receive Free trial software and Evaluation Guide (a $100 value) as well as a Complimentary whitepaper.

Cloud hosting technologies allow tax and accounting firms to utilize best-of-breed solutions in the cloud.  New paperless binder technologies allow firms to enjoy the flexibility of paper files in a paperless environment. In the first free one hour webinar the David and Kacee will demonstrate the benefits of flexible paperless binder tools, automated tax workpapers and discuss how a private secure hosted environment allows firms to:

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Lacerte Tax Software Hosting on the Cloud

Lacerte Tax Software Hosting

Accountants have long been restricted to their offices due to specific program access limitations. But not Lacerte Tax Software Hosting.

The technological advances in Cloud Computing have made that headache a thing of the past. Lacerte tax software hosting as well as other tax applications like Proseries, ATX, Ultra Tax, Drake, etc. through a managed service provider gives accountants instant access from any CPU with internet connectivity to their files, folders, data and applications.

See related: Cloud9 Real Time Voted #1 Accountant’s Cloud Provider

lacerte tax software hosting and Readers Choice Cloud Accounting WinnerThis multi-user Lacerte tax software hosting environment allows accountants the convenience and benefits of staying in touch with their staff and sharing files while working on them simultaneously without being limited by their geographic locations. The ability to access data and apps from anywhere provides remote access professionals a secure solution. Tax software Lacerte hosting improves productivity while saving on time and expense.

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Tax Software Hosting on the Cloud

Tax software hosting and tax preparation software cloud computing is a Cloud9 specialty

Tax software hosting – No longer limited to QuickBooks and Microsoft software cloud hosting!

The Cloud9 virtual server solution provides clients with a private cloud to host all their desktop applications including Tax Software Hosting, Time & Billing programs, CRM systems etc. Tax software hosting allows users to access the programs anytime, anywhere via internet access and work remote with their applications being hosted at a SAS70 Type II Data Center.

See related: Cloud9 Real Time has been honored with the 2012 & 2013 Readers’ Choice Award by CPA Practice Advisor for Favorite Accounting ASP/Hosted/Cloud Solution Provider

cloud9 tax application hosting by cloud9 voted #w by more accountants and tax preparersWhy would you want to utilize tax software hosting? A multitude of reasons! The most common reason for cloud hosting tax software is that the firm does not want to buy and maintain a local server. Second, the firm has remote employees or the need to work outside the physical office on their programs. Finally, the firm desires to have a more secure infrastructure than the traditional client-server infrastructure.

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