Remote Access, and Accountant’s Copy Transfer Files – Their Function, Pros/Cons

Remote Access and using Accountant’s Copy Transfer Files is the way to go these days, when travel time to and from a client can be more time and money consuming.  More and more, I am conducting training and support with people geographically far removed, using Remote Access tools like “Gotomypc,” “GoToMeeting,” and/or “LogMeIn.”  The three previously mentioned are several of the more commonly used tools to access a client’s computer remotely, and are tools I use personally to assist my clients.

Additionally, within the last couple years’ releases of QuickBooks, one can even send their Accountant’s Copy Transfer file to their accountant directly through a transfer utility Intuit has created.

For those that aren’t sure of what an Accountant’s Copy does, it allows the company (you) to send a “restricted” file to your accountant to review, make postings or adjusting entries into, and other related accounting activities, to produce clean financial statemtents.  For example:  You pick the date 6/30/11, as your cutoff date.   You can work on anything after that date, so your business doesn’t have to stop while your accountant is working on the file.  Meanwhile, the accountant has access to everything BEFORE the cutoff date of 6/30, allowing the accountant to make adjusting postings, run reports, etc.

Once you use the “Send to Accountant” feature, via an Intuit utility a copy of your data file will be sent to the accountant with some restrictions.  When the accountant is done, they simply send the file back via the same Intuit utility, and Import Accountant Changes.  This ‘blends’ the files back together, and removes the date restriction from the business owner.  Now, the business owner can work on anything prior to the cutoff date if they would like to.

Cons

-The business owner cannot work on or change any transaction prior to the cutoff date, thus restricting them if a change is needed.  However infrequent this issue may be, I have seen a few instances of a business owner needing to modify a form or doc in an accountant’s copy, and have to wait until the file has been returned.  Or if unable to wait, the owner would Remove Restrictions, modify the form, and re-do the whole procedure of submitting another accountants copy file.

Pros

– The business owner can operate their business going forward day-to-day, and can process transactions, reports, lists, as needed.

– The accountant can make the needed adjustments to clean up erroneous or omitted entries.

– The transfering of an accountants copy file is MUCH faster, and saves you time, than a normal backup file, as it is smaller overall.

– Combining the use of an accountant’s copy, and remote access software tools, can allow much more efficient and productive work to be done between the business owner and the accountant – it saves one countless hours of driving and non-billable time.