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Improving the Business of Art: Making Beautiful Business Decisions

There is a lot more to managing and maintaining an art collection than simply collecting.  In the art business, knowing where something came from, how it got to where it is now (and what it cost to get there), and keeping track of it thereafter requires software and systems to store and manage the information.  A professional art collection management solution will do much more than simply keep an inventory list of items.  This solution must store all the relevant information about the work as well as gather information while facilitating the various business processes relating to activities around the work. The first step to improvement is ensuring all the processes are being facilitated.

Acquiring the item, transporting the item, preparing the item, showing the item, maintaining the item, selling the item… all of these business activities performed must not just be accounted for, they must relate back to the work of art and become part of its historical record. Art tends to move around. Traveling from collector to collector or to different galleries, works of art may change location and ownership or custodial care frequently.  The origin of a work and the tracked purchase history, as well as the history of placements is among the critical information to be stored with each item. This most valuable data is part of the legacy of the work that any professional system should address. If information is power, then better retention and management of information regarding a work makes the entire collection stronger.

The location or exhibition of a work, its purchase history, the related museum and contact records – all this and more must be maintained and managed with each and every item in a collection.  Essential data such as provenance, condition and value is certainly kept for each work, but the key to making a truly useful system for collectors and artists both is the ability to get all the needed data in a single view or report.

Having the inventory information available for invoicing and reporting is one thing, but also being able to connect or identify individual works and collections with relevant contacts is surprisingly valuable. Tracking other information items like costs associated with shipping or framing, or storing both an appraised value as well as an insured value, provides for a comprehensive record of the work and its properties and makes forms and documents preparation not only more accurate but more efficient and useful, too.

Art businesses are like many other “product”-based businesses in that they have e-commerce needs, they build websites to show off their catalogue, they use mobile applications to display items, and they find much higher efficiency and agility when the websites and mobile applications work with the same real-time inventory data that the rest of the system works with.  The goal is to achieve measurable results through improved efficiencies, and that comes from improved information management and integrated systems.  Centralized computing models and connected cloud services establish the foundation.

Cloud hosting, remote access and mobile technologies, and location-based solutions are all part of the package for businesses involved in the business of art these days.  Implementing a hosting solution which enable anytime/anywhere access to business applications and information is often the first key to unlocking the better and more efficient art business.

Whether it is collecting, selling or showing, users involved in the business of art need secure access to all their information whether they’re in the office or not so they have the data needed to support making beautifully intelligent business decisions when it matters most. The rest is just pretty pictures.

Make Sense?

J

Like your Cheese, the QuickBooks ProAdvisor Website has Moved

Intuit is making big changes to the QuickBooks ProAdvisor program and website, clearly reflecting the desire to keep QuickBooks Online edition at the forefront of the solution set.

The QuickBooks ProAdvisor benefits are now delivered within QuickBooks Online Accountant, including desktop licenses, etc.  Earlier this year, Intuit began redirecting to QBOA for those looking for the ProAdvisor program information, and now the entire ProAdvisor site is about to be fully retired.

Those working with QuickBooks desktop editions should pay close attention here, because being a ProAdvisor no longer means simply getting training and software.  The belief is that all ProAdvisors are professionals serving a client base, and that these professionals should use QuickBooks Online Accountant to manage that client base.  Staff accountants, bookkeepers and those who wish to get accredited for their QuickBooks training, whether desktop or online, will be able to manage that activity only from within the QBOA app.

The ProAdvisor website used to be where enrolled advisors could obtain their training, certification, manage their listings for referrals, and get their software.  With the introduction of client and practice management features geared towards helping ProAdvisors manage their entire client bases (QBO and QB desktop clients), it seems that QBOA is now the sole way for professionals to engage with Intuit as ProAdvisors, too.  No longer a standalone site, ProAdvisors must now enroll and access their program benefits – including desktop benefits – as QuickBooks Online Accountants.

read more on Intuit’s website: ProAdvisor Website moving to QBOA – QuickBooks Learn & Support

Make Sense?

J

Technology-Enabled Practice is Profitable Practice

A profitable accounting “firm of the future” is not out of reach for even the smallest of professional practices, because it doesn’t take a lot of people to develop a highly efficient and profitable operation.  The key is having the right business foundation – the technology and the concentration on structure and process – which will serve the business for years to come. Profitability is really about effectiveness and efficiency… delivering more value and doing it in a more intelligent manner than the next guy.  This is how the practice not only stays profitable, this is how it beats the competition.

Powered in part by efficiency created with technology-enabled business, professional firms find that they are able to realize increased revenues by billing for services, not by the billable hour.  Data processing and performing the “mechanics” of the bookkeeping process is going by the wayside, with artificial intelligence and automation taking the lead in these areas.  This creates the opportunity for professionals to broaden their scope of service and involvement with business clients.   The higher value work, the tasks that most professionals would rather spend their time on, is now available because the lower value data entry and tabulation is handled electronically.  When accountants are able to spend less time on entering information and more time on evaluation and analysis, business clients find greater value in the insight delivered from the engagement.

It is more than possible for the professional to develop new competencies in business technologies without having to invest the entire practice and put the client base at risk. Hosting and remote access solutions, for example, bridge the gap between on-premises computing and the cloud, delivering the benefits of mobility and anytime/anywhere working models without the complete transition to SaaS applications and web-based frameworks.  This allows the firm to streamline production by taking advantage of connected systems and real-time data, which is at the core of efficiency in business.

The small business market is the economic growth sector, and the number of opportunities being presented to smaller firms is increasingly significant. With the correct technology and approach, small firms are able to compete at levels previously available only to their larger counterparts.  The business of accounting is changing because the technologies supporting it are evolving more rapidly than ever before.  The firms that embrace these changes and use them to improve and streamline practice performance are the firms that will achieve and sustain the highest levels of profitability.

Make Sense?

J

Hosting QuickBooks Desktop Editions – The Good and the Bad – Accountex Report

published on Sleeter.com blog, now Accountex Report, January 22, 2013. This is an oldie but a goodie… perhaps more relevant now than ever.

With the accounting industry moving towards cloud computing and fully online working models, users of Intuit QuickBooks desktop editions may believe that their best option is to migrate to a web-based edition of the software rather than continuing to use the version of QuickBooks they have come to rely on. While QuickBooks Online Edition may seem like the best option for anytime, anywhere access to financial applications and data, it might not provide the functionality or features that QuickBooks desktop edition users need. When the business needs the full capability of the desktop edition product, hosting that solution with an application hosting service provider may be the right answer.

“Hosting” QuickBooks desktop editions means that a hosting service provider installs and manages the QuickBooks software and the company data files on their own cloud-based servers. Users don’t have to install QuickBooks on their PC, because they use the Internet to connect to their QuickBooks software and company data hosted by the service provider. Whether the service is accessed by clicking on an icon on the local PC desktop or by logging in via a web page or portal, the underlying technology is still Windows and QuickBooks.

Continue reading Hosting QuickBooks Desktop Editions – The Good and the Bad – Accountex Report

check out MyQuickCloud for QuickBooks Remote Access and Managed Cloud Hosting

The best first step to getting started with the #cloud might be to address #remote access and #mobility

The best first step to getting started with the cloud might be to address remote access and mobility

It can be a confusing and convoluted trip if the first steps to cloud enabling the business are not the correct ones.  Rather than stumbling about and approaching the problem with trial and error, it makes sense to start by enabling the solutions already in place, creating secure remote access and mobility for the desktop solutions the company has already invested in.

Extending workflows to embrace mobile workers and remote offices is the first step to developing an efficient anytime/anywhere business.  Once the organization has developed an understanding of how remote teams work best together and has put in place the processes and framework within which they will operate, then it make sense to take the next step to investigate new applications and tools which could further improve and streamline operations.

Address remote working and mobility first to better understand what the other benefits and impacts might be with cloud computing models in the business.  Then, when the business is operating from a more informed position, does it make sense to map the strategy to more fully embrace cloud technologies.

jmbunnyfeetMake Sense?

J

 

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