2018 conferences showcased Intuit’s commitment to making QuickBooks more focused on user needs than ever.
I recently returned from spending a week in San Jose, California where we focused on QuickBooks. I was invited to participate in the QuickBooks Solutions Provider (QSP) Conference called “Better Together,” the Intuit Influencer and Media Event, and the 5th Annual QuickBooks Connect Accounting Conference. I learned a wealth of information and news that I want to share with you.
QSP Better Together
The first conference was the QSP Better Together event. CBG received four awards, which included the Bonnie Nagayama Award. This award was created after Bonnie Nagayama lost her battle to cancer. She was a CPA, Top Reseller, Advanced ProAdvisor, an Elite member of the Intuit Trainer Writer network (TWN). She regularly contributed to our community with webinars, articles, classes, and was a wealth of resources.
When I became an Advanced ProAdvisor in 2008, I met Bonnie through the community. I subscribed to her weekly QuickBooks Tips and Tricks newsletters and read them from cover to cover. She created a QuickBooks File Checkup Program that many of us use today.
We often get calls from clients who have set up their own QB file and they need us to help them get it set up correctly. These cleanup projects can take many hours and are very hard to quote. She taught us to use this tool to review the file which enabled us to create value to the client in the form of a report that we could charge for. The prospect can then decide to use the cleanup report to do the work themselves, hire our firm or find someone else. When Bonnie became sick, she stopped selling the tool, so I created a blog with some of her ideas to share with other Proadvisors.
Here I am with Bonnie’s husband, Edward Nagayama, and her sister, Kathy Lorenz, as they present the award. I told them how honored I was to be selected for this award and that she left a significant mark in our community. I am dedicated to carrying on her high standards.
When I posted on Facebook about this award, Alison Ball, Sr. Manager – Global Influencer Strategy, Small Business Group at Intuit, commented, “We co-wrote the first course for what would become the trainer writer network (TWN), in late 2004: ‘Top 10 Things My Clients Do Wrong in QuickBooks, and How to Fix Them.’ It was a smash hit. But the coolest thing about it was that the Chief Architect at QuickBooks (Keith Olsen) got hold of it, and his engineers systematically worked their way through all 10 common errors so that people no longer make them! Think of the millions of peoples’ lives Bonnie impacted by writing that course. I told that story at her Celebration of Life. She was so humble that I was positive she hadn’t told her family. I was right.”
During this conference, we also heard from the QuickBooks Enterprise Marketing team, Marc Stein, VP, Head of WW Partner Sales & Business Development, and Todd Stanley, Vice President & Segment Leader, Quickbooks Desktop Ecosystem, who all reassured us that Intuit is continuing to invest in our desktop products. An interesting statistic was that the marketing budget for this year is $10M, in comparison to the year before, which was $3M, and the year before that was $1M.
This aligns with the thinking that although Intuit is very much committed to investing in QBO as the future, they realize the need to continue to invest in QuickBooks Enterprise because it is a well-suited product not just for job costing and inventory clients but for higher volume, high-value clients too. This was well received by Intuit resellers in our group. We support all products in the vast array of offerings, and many of us are focused on the high-value client.
Todd Stanley also reported that Intuit received lots of feedback from the ProAdvisor community that we do not want them to end the QuickBooks Advanced Desktop certification program. He said they are currently re-evaluating. Intuit listens, and a clear example of that is in 2016 they announced they were no longer launching new versions of QB Mac, but because of the feedback of ProAdvisors, in 2019 they brought back QuickBooks Desktop for Mac. As we shifted to QuickBooks Connect, the message that QuickBooks desktop is not dead was heard loud and clear in some breakout sessions as well—they were featured in the center of the vendor hall. Thank you, Intuit! This allows us to right fit our customers in the Intuit ecosystem.