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It’s time to challenge the conventional wisdom

I still recall the 1980s, when accountants had just begun to use PCs. The first programs available were tax systems that mimicked the batch mode of mainframe computers to process tax returns. Accountants would fill in input sheets and hand them to key punch operators to key punch the tax returns. If changes were needed, they’d have to go through the same routine all over again.

PCs were supposed to put computing power at our fingertips, but we realized that, if accountants were to take advantage of the computing power of PCs, they would have to use their own fingertips. So we created the first interactive tax program—Tax Relief—that let accountants themselves use PCs to prepare tax returns. Tax Relief calculated the forms instantly, so accountants could do tax planning. When we showed Tax Relief to accountants, they would say, "Chandra, you must be kidding. Do you expect me to sit at the PC and 'key punch' a tax return?"

How many accountants do you know today who don’t use PCs to prepare tax returns?

The moral of this story is that, to take full advantage of any new technology, you must challenge conventional wisdom and reengineer your processes. Today, we have another revolutionary technology—the cloud. Look around you and you’ll see the many unexpected ways it is being used to transform our lives. In the accounting profession, the transformation may not be dramatic, but it will still be quite significant. Here are some examples of how it can transform accounting:

One unified accounting system: In the desktop era, clients went out and bought their own accounting software, while you used a professional system for write-up and trial balance work, and to create fully customizable financial statements. Unfortunately, most vendors are still following that same model. Just as with the first PC-based tax systems that mimicked the mainframe approach, these systems mimic the desktop approach.

Now, however, there is a completely new class of Accountant-Centric systems such as Accounting Power from AccountantsWorld that have challenged the conventional wisdom. Accountant-Centric systems provide all of the functionality you and your clients need into a single unified system that includes bookkeeping, write-up, trial balance, financial reporting, alerts to help you stay on top of your clients’ finances, and more. In these systems, offered only to accountants, you remain in full command over the entire accounting process. You decide the functions you want each client to perform, based on their needs and abilities. Clients log in to the system from your website to enter information, and you use the same system to perform your professional work, so that you and your clients share data. As the name indicates, Accountant-Centric systems put you back at the center of client accounting. Because clients’ accounting data is available to you in real time, you can use the advanced tools available within the system to offer crucial financial advice to your clients in a timely manner.

After-the-fact write-up: You probably still have clients who write manual checks for their businesses and come to you with their cancelled checks and bank statements, which your staff then enters into a write-up system manually. That time- and labor-intensive process is now a thing of the past. Thanks to the cloud, your firm hardly needs to enter data manually for clients at all, as every day, bank transactions for your clients are downloaded into your write-up system, keeping your clients’ books current while spending a fraction of the time your staff spends now. Not only that, keeping clients’ books updated throughout the year reduces the year-end closing crunch significantly.

Automated document sharing: In the desktop era, integration between applications just meant data exchange between different applications. The cloud brings integration between applications to a different level, allowing you to automate many time-consuming tasks.

Consider how you send finished documents to your clients. You’ve probably spent a significant amount of time and money to get tax returns, financials, and payroll reports to your clients safely and securely. Now, thanks to the integration of tax, accounting, and payroll systems with online document management systems and client portals, that process is completely automated, saving you hundreds of hours while enhancing client satisfaction. As soon as you close the books, for example, you can automatically save a complete set of reports and financials in client portals that your clients can access securely at any time, from anywhere.

These are just a few of many examples of how the cloud is helping accountants revamp their processes.

As part of our Expert Webinar Series, AccountantsWorld is offering Using Cloud Technology to Improve Your Processes, presented by AccountantsWorld President Jeff Gramlich.


AccountantsWorld announces a major redesign of Website Relief

AccountantsWorld Introduces a Major Redesign of Website Relief – Website Builder Solution Designed Exclusively For Accountants.

AccountantsWorld is proud to announce a major redesign to Website Relief, its cloud-based solution designed to help accounting firms create websites and virtual offices. The new Website Relief makes it easier than ever for accountants to build websites that engage and inform both existing and potential new clients.

For over a decade, Website Relief has been a pioneer in helping accountants build fully customized sites that engage and inform new prospects and securely deliver useful tools and information to existing clients. The new Website Relief takes AccountantsWorld’s leadership in the website space to a new level. It offers the widest selection of professionally designed themes to allow accountants to design and launch attractive, easy-to-use websites in less time than ever before. And firms can create unlimited pages for their site and add them to their own menus for customized content and navigation.

But even more significantly, the new Website Relief offers a feature set unmatched by any other website building tool for accounting firms

  • All Website Relief sites are automatically optimized for display across multiple devices, including mobile phones and tablets. Recent research indicates that over half of small-business owners now research products and services for their businesses on their mobile devices. Website Relief’s optimization ensures that accountants’ sites will be presented beautifully, regardless of how viewers choose to access them.
  • With an upgraded platform based on HTML-5 and the latest web standards, the new, easy-to-use and flexible Website Relief provides improved search engine optimization, which means a higher ranking (and more leads) for websites with strong content.

Using Website Relief’s powerful and flexible features, users can: 

  • Personalize website content with firm logos, custom pages, and uploaded images.
  • Design "slider panels" to display a moving banner of multiple images across any page.
  • Include Website Relief’s unique interactive Client Survey to gather direct feedback from clients.
  • Add customizable links to Google Maps on the Contact Us page.
  • Insert access to social media platforms such as LinkedIn, Facebook, and Twitter on any page.
  • Review a Dashboard of website statistics, including recent publish dates and versions.
  • Create a blog. Blogs can boost the search relevance of accountants' sites by 30% or more, and Website Relief now delivers fully integrated blogs at no additional charge.
  • Include interactive standard or customizable forms on any page, to collect contact data and engage website visitors.
  • Mark any page as "draft" until it’s ready for publishing.

 "Ten years ago, AccountantsWorld created the first website builder solution designed exclusively for accountants, and with the brand-new Website Relief, we’re proud to continue to provide industry-leading innovation in this vital category," said Sharada Bhansali, AccountantsWorld’s co-founder and Senior Vice President. "Our mission with Website Relief remains consistent: to help accountants improve their firms’ visibility to new clients and their retention of current clients. Websites remain the most visible and critical vehicle for accounting firms of all sizes to present and differentiate themselves. Any accounting firm looking to improve their growth and retention should discover what separates Website Relief from its competition."

For more information about Website Relief, please visit

About Accountantsworld

Based in Long Island, New York, AccountantsWorld has been serving accounting professionals for the past 26 years. Over 120,000 accountants across the globe use the resources available on the website each month, and for the last 13 years, AccountantsWorld has been the leading provider of cloud-based solutions designed exclusively for accountants, AccountantsWorld offers a wide range of innovative accountingpayrollwebsite, and document management solutions to help accountants work collaboratively with clients, foster greater client loyalty, and improve the bottom lines of their practices. AccountantsWorld is also the only leading cloud solutions provider that puts Accountants First™ by never competing with accountants or selling services directly to their clients


AccountantsWorld announces strategic multi-year partnership with HBK 

AccountantsWorld, a leading provider of cloud-based solutions in accounting and payroll services, has announced the signing of a strategic partnership with HBK CPAs & Consultants (HBK), a Top 100 accounting and wealth management services firm based in Youngstown, Ohio.

HBK will use AccountantsWorld’s award-winning software solutions across its entire firm, which includes offices located in Ohio, Pennsylvania, New Jersey and Florida that offer a myriad of tax, accounting, business consulting, valuation/litigation support, wealth management and business advisory services to thousands of clients.

“AccountantsWorld takes great pride in partnering with accounting firms of all sizes with a singular goal in mind: to help them manage their evolving needs and grow their business,” said Jeff Gramlich, president of AccountantsWorld. “We view today’s announcement as a starting point for a long-term, multi-faceted relationship with HBK, and we are tremendously excited to help such a dynamic, highly recognized firm continue to achieve its strategic goals.”

“The resources AccountantsWorld provides helps accounting firms grow their businesses.  We are confident this affiliation will help enhance the wide range of the services we offer our clients, as well as in assisting with our own aggressive goals for growth,” said Martin M. Gargano, CPA and Principal at HBK.


About AccountantsWorld

For over 13 years, AccountantsWorld has been the leading provider of cloud-based solutions designed exclusively for accountants. AccountantsWorld offers a complete integrated suite of innovative payroll, accounting, and practice management solutions to help accountants work collaboratively with clients, foster greater client loyalty, and improve the bottom lines of their practices. AccountantsWorld is also the only leading cloud solutions provider that puts Accountants First™ by never competing with accountants or selling services directly to their clients.


About HBK

Established in 1949, HBK CPAs & Consultants (HBK) serves clients ranging from individuals to small businesses to multimillion-dollar corporations across the United States through office locations in Pennsylvania, Ohio, Florida and New Jersey.  HBK specializes in a wide variety of tax, accounting, assurance, and business consulting services to help individuals and businesses achieve their financial goals. HBK is a recurring member of the Accounting Today Top 100 Firms list, having been named the 67th largest firm in 2014 and being ranked #3 in the rankings of “Fastest Growing Firms in the U.S.” HBK has also been named to the “Best Employers in Ohio” list for five consecutive years.


Meet AccountantsWorld at the NY and NJ Accounting Shows

AccountantsWorld will have booths at both the New York Accounting show (April 30 - May 1) and the New Jersey Accounting Show (May 14-15). Stop by for live, hands-on product demonstrations, answers to all of your questions about our cloud solutions, and free giveaways. We'll be at booth #426 in New York and #505 in New Jersey.

In addition, our CEO, Dr. Chandra Bhansali, will be speaking at the New York show, presenting "Cloud Computing Is Here - How To Make The Most Of It" on April 30 at 4 pm. This session will be moderated by Dan Hood, Editor-in-Chief of Accounting Today.


If you're an accountant in the NY / NJ area, we look forward to seeing you in the weeks ahead! Haven't registered yet? It's not too late - here are the links for both shows:

2014 NY Accounting Technology Show

2014 NJ Accounting Technology Show


The Story of Sharada Bhansali, One of the 25 Most Powerful Women in Accounting

For over two decades, Sharada Bhansali has been at the helm of product development for AccountantsWorld (and its predecessor, MicroVision Software). Now, she has been recognized for her commitment to our company - and the accounting profession in general - by being named one of the 2013 Most Powerful Women in Accounting.

This list has been put together by our colleagues at CPA Practice Advisor. It recognizes women who have transformed tax and accounting for the better - and who are continuing to shape its future.

And who could fit that profile more than Sharada?

A Trailblazer for Accountants

Sharada created MicroVision in 1984. Her initial mission was to help professional accountants complete their tax work more efficiently by using the latest technologies (at that time, the introduction of desktop PC's). With her husband and co-founder, Chandra, the result was the flagship Tax Relief product, which was used by tens of thousands of loyal accountants across the U.S. over the next two decades.


“My focus was never on the technology itself, but rather how it could transform the work and lives of accountants.”


In 2003, Sharada and Chandra sold the Tax Relief line to Thomson Creative Solutions. Their intent wasn’t to retire, but to focus on a new realm: helping accountants leverage the Web. They started with , a portal serving as a free online community of accountants. Six months later, it received Forbes' Best of the Web award. Today, it remains free to join and continues to serve as one of the most popular destinations on the Web for accountants.

Soon Sharada and the AccountantsWorld team realized that the Internet could have even more far-reaching consequences. It offers accountants capabilities they never had before – the ability to work from anywhere at any time, unlimited computing power at very low cost, and last but not least, the ability to work collaboratively with their clients regardless of geographic location.

AccountantsWorld’s focus became to harness the power of these remarkable capabilities to improve accountants' professional lives, especially their efficiency and the value they can provide to their clients.


"One of the first things I noticed about Sharada was the focus and intensity she brings to her work. What makes Sharada’s passion more impressive is that her goal has always been to use it not only to benefit AccountantsWorld, but the accounting industry as a whole. Her commitment to helping accountants thrive solidified our organization’s Accountants First™ credo, and continues to exemplify what we’re all about today."

 ~ Jeff Gramlich, President, Accountantsworld


AccountantsWorld’s first major undertaking was to level the playing field for payroll processing. At that time, accountants could not offer payroll services profitably, while service bureaus were making 40-45% net profit. The AccountantsWorld team created a powerful processing solution that rivals the capabilities of payroll services bureaus, but at the fraction of the cost of those bureaus. Now accountants could offer highly profitable payroll services.

Under Sharada and Chandra’s leadership, the AccountantsWorld team has also made a lasting contribution to core accounting services by creating Accounting Power (formerly Accounting Relief), a new type of solution that puts accountants back at the center of client accounting. It lets accountants work collaboratively with their clients while accountants remain in command of the entire process. This Accountant-Centric model increases the relevance of accountants by making it easier to help clients run their business efficiently and profitably.

Today AccountantsWorld offers the most comprehensive suite of cloud solutions for accountants:

  • Accounting Power, the first fully collaborative cloud accounting solution for accountants and their clients.

These solutions have garnered two Innovation Awards from CPA Practice Advisor, as well as countless other accolades. And the focus on continual innovation in the cloud has driven the accounting profession – and AccountantsWorld itself - forward. [Gary Boomer quote about AW]


Personal Values

In her personal life, Sharada has made an enduring commitment to helping others. For over a decade, she and Chandra have proudly supported The Jaipur Foot Foundation, an India-based organization that has provided high-quality, durable artificial limbs and aids to over 1 million disabled persons worldwide to help them regain mobility and opportunity in their lives - all free of charge.

Sharada and Chandra have two children, Divya and Punita, and one grandson, Andrew. In her free time, Sharada enjoys cooking, reading, and yoga.


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