Smart Stops on the Web

Keep Current on IT Trends
CPAs and IT consultants can register for free to access information on evaluating client software at Hewlett-Packard’s Service Management Knowledge Center Web site. Topics to read up on include “What’s happening in service management?” and “How do you assess your needs and opportunities?”

Tech-savvy CPAs and consultants will want to visit the Center for Education and Research in Information Assurance and Security Web stop to find articles such as “Four Steps to a More Secure Corporation” and “Addressing the People Problem: Human Performance Technology” as well as links to free software evaluation kits and white papers. They also can take advantage of Cassandra—an electronic organizational tool, which lets users create saved profiles of applications running on networks.

Know Your Target Market
CPAs advising small business clients can read the section on niche recommendations at the Center for Community Economic Development’s e-page of the University of Wisconsin—Extension Web site. The Downtown and Business District Market Analysis workbook helps local business leaders and developers in small cities identify economic opportunities for their communities. It also discusses niche strategies that can help a city’s downtown compete in the retail market. Visitors also can use an employee turnover calculator to help companies find and keep good staff members.

Find Your Niche
CPAs and finance professionals can read the article “Businesses Turn to ‘Niche’ Consulting Firms” and others. Users also will find links to accounting software ratings, tax investigation and inquiry information and an IT research library with case studies, research reports and white papers.

Free Calculators and Checklists
Accountants and bookkeepers looking for links to online calculators for amortization, alternative minimum tax and taxes on tips as well as checklists for business start-ups and free trade magazines can find them at the American Institute of Professional Bookkeepers Web site. Other resources here include accounting, payroll and tax software guides, business and legal forms, dictionaries and glossaries.

This Site Runs True to Form
CPAs and legal professionals looking for documents and forms will find 25,000 to choose from at this Web site. Registrants can access corporate and real estate forms as well as Social Security, state, tax and loss bond ones. The section Legal Questions and Answers provides links to state-specific law summaries on, for example, power of attorney, premarital agreements and wills.

Newsletters for the E-Accountant
Free registration gives CPAs and accounting professionals access to this Web stop’s Consulting Insights, a bimonthly electronic newsletter with information about the accounting software and consulting business, and WebCPA Week , offering news on the latest activity in the accounting profession. Registrants also can get advanced copies of magazine articles and columns from other newsletters such as Accounting Technology.

E-ditorials and Resources
Based in eastern South Carolina, this accounting and consulting firm fills its e-stop with links to compound-interest, mortgage, moving and salary calculators, federal and state government site links, tax tips and a universal currency converter. One interesting section, Editorials, features articles from professionals such as “CPA and CPA Expert Are Not Synonymous” and “How Do You Measure Business Performance?”

Know the “Hole” Story
CPAs who want to know the ins and outs of tax rules and regulations can register for free at CPA Diane Kennedy’s Web site to find tax strategies to benefit their clients. The Phoenix-based accounting firm owner’s e-stop features the section What’s Hot, with new ways to take business trips and deduct the expenses and seven steps to wealth. Users also can access a real estate wealth builder calculator and get Kennedy’s Loopholes Update newsletter, which delivers tax tips and laws via e-mail. Visitors will find useful information on the Tax Fears and Facts page as well.

“The Smart Guide for a Whole Life”
Women dividing their time and energies between work and family can receive a one-year subscription for about $10 to Working Mother at this Web site. The October 2003 issue of the magazine features the “100 Best Companies for Working Mothers,” rating organizations in categories including advancement for women, child care, flexibility and total compensation.


Year-end tax planning and what’s new for 2016

Practitioners need to consider several tax planning opportunities to review with their clients before the end of the year. This report offers strategies for individuals and businesses, as well as recent federal tax law changes affecting this year’s tax returns.


News quiz: Retirement planning, tax practice, and fraud risk

Recent reports focused on a survey that gauges the worries about retirement among CPA financial planners’ clients, a suit that affects tax practitioners, and a guide that offers advice on fraud risk. See how much you know with this short quiz.


Bolster your data defenses

As you weather the dog days of summer, it’s a good time to make sure your cybersecurity structure can stand up to the heat of external and internal threats. Here are six steps to help shore up your systems.