Intuit Announces 2018 Global Firm of the Future Grand Prize Winner. Cloud Bookkeeping Services Takes the Lead Spot, Promotes Education Among Firms
“This year’s finalists have truly raised the bar for what it means to be a Firm of the Future. Not only do they embrace online technologies, but they have also gone above and beyond to find new technological innovations that automate processes, so they can spend more time as trusted advisors,” said Ariege Misherghi, global leader of Intuit’s Accountant Segment, Small Business and Self-Employed Group. “We are sure that Cloud Bookkeeping Services and all of our finalists will continue to serve as an inspiration to other firms around the globe.”
In June, Intuit began its search to find the most future-ready bookkeeping, full-service accounting and tax firms in Australia, Canada, India, the United Kingdom and United States, receiving entries from solo practitioners to large firms. Ariege Misherghi and a panel of qualified judges from Intuit’s global sites selected the top five finalists whose written submissions best embodied the attributes of Firms of the Future.
- Cloud Bookkeeping Services of Canada: Cloud Bookkeeping Services is committed to using online technologies and artificial intelligence for all new clients and believes in promoting education. As volunteer mentors with Futurepreneurs Canada, the firm uses the time saved with QuickBooks Online to work with mentees to give back to the business community. The firm hosts a Bookkeepers Bootcamp and recently launched a similar Business Bootcamp, which is offered to all small- to medium-sized businesses, not just bookkeeping clients. Cloud Bookkeeping Services successfully transitioned its client Brighton Sport & Wellness Centre to the cloud and now has more time to serve as the client’s strategic advisor.
- PJCO of the United Kingdom: In 2016, the firm invested in a specialist cloud services department and recruited a team of recently graduated ACCA trainees to research and develop their knowledge of business apps and cloud accounting while pursuing their ACCA qualification; and PJCO hasn’t looked back. The Cloud Services Manager and his team freely share their understanding of how technology can be used to solve small business owners’ problems. PJCO’s charity partner, Norwich FoodHub, collects food that would otherwise be wasted by supermarkets and redistributes it to people in need. PJCO introduced technology to make operations more efficient and better for volunteers, and as a result they now offer over 60 volunteering slots each week, across 14 stores, filled by a volunteer base of over 100 people.
- Reconciled of the United States: Reconciled is an online bookkeeping and business advisory firm that has grown from one bookkeeper to a team of 16 in less than three years by leveraging online sales efforts. The firm is active on social media, using Facebook Live once a month for a video series called "Everyday Entrepreneur" in which the firm interviews one of its small business clients or an entrepreneur in its network. Reconciled also leverages email marketing and its brand story to connect with new customers. Its client Ogee wanted to have accounting systems ready as it launched its product, and Reconciled advised Ogee on the best method to record sales by channel, including how to invoice wholesale customers from QuickBooks Online. Ogee was able to focus on making and selling their product, knowing that they had a strong accounting process and partner behind them.
- Regional Business Services Pty Ltd of Australia: Thanks to the power of QuickBooks Online and online technologies, Regional Business Services now serves 450 businesses each year across the Eastern Australian Coast, and has developed its own specific finance system and workflow process. The firm has worked with client Townsville Service Group for the last five years, since the client’s start. Now the client turns over more than $2 million per fiscal year, and Regional Business Services meets every month with the client’s accountant, with whom they have a great relationship, to discuss performance, strategy and areas for improvement.
- Wealth Café Business Advisors Pvt Ltd of India: Wealth Café serves close to 125 small businesses end-to-end for bookkeeping, accounting and tax requirements and has been using QuickBooks Online since the product’s launch in India. Having the firm’s entire process on the cloud has enabled it to implement a policy internally wherein it has a turnaround time of no more than four hours to resolve a client query. Its client Pepper Mint Studios transitioned its entire finance operations over to Wealth Café, thanks to the robust system the firm set up to meet its client’s needs.
As part of this year’s contest, Intuit will make a $25,000 USD donation to Kiva.org in recognition of every vote received during the voting period, which ultimately determined the grand prize winner.
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