Utilizing Technology to Streamline Tax Form Filing

Originally published in Intuitive Accountant – see original article (and more pictures!) here.

KORE Accounting Solutions was highlighted in online accounting publication, Insightful Accountant, for one of the many ways we utilize technology to better serve our customers.

Form Filing the Easy Way

1099 & W2’s

When it’s time to send your customers their 1099 forms, every accounting firm knows the drill. Pull together the paper forms, manually feed them into the printer, sort the copies to be kept and those to be sent, and make sure each form is lined up. And if there are any corrections, the process gets even more arduous. Since each pre-printed page has two forms, making a change to one of them requires trashing the other.

In the throes of tax season, when every client wants everything yesterday, every minute matters.

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Inna Korenzvit, Principal and Founder, KORE Bookkeeping Solutions

This was the kind of exhausting exercise that KORE Bookkeeping Solutions faced every tax season. Each year, the Phoenix-based firm would mail out 1099 forms to its clients’ contractors. But in 2016, before making the annual trek to Sam’s Club to purchase another bundle of paper forms, the firm decided it needed to find another solution.

That’s when principal and founder Inna Korenzvit said the game changed for KORE. A little online research showed that the solution to its situation rested in the process of e-filing. Sure, there were some unknowns, like having to pay a higher cost and investing time into the learning curve, but the step-by-step paperless process seemed like the best way to help lessen some of the manpower hours.

The KORE team turned to efile4Biz. A member of the ComplyRight family of brands, efile4Biz is the leading IRS-authorized e-file provider, and an industry pioneer in online processing of 1099s, W-2s and ACA forms. The company offers comprehensive, front-to-back processing of tax information returns, including printing, mailing and optional electronic delivery to every recipient, and electronic filing with the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) and Social Security Administration (SSA).

“We had to send out forms for the two dozen customers’ 120 contractors,” Korenzvit says. “Also, for each company’s 1099s, we also had to send in the 1096 to the IRS. Since the IRS had pushed up the deadline for submitting the final forms to Jan. 31 from the previous March 15 (in 2016), we wanted to find a more efficient way to do it, even if it involved a slightly higher cost.

While Korenzvit admits that KORE was well versed in the process of generating and sending out paper forms, the firm felt that the exercise had become too tedious. What efile4Biz offered helped streamline the process. The step-by-step paperless process, which can be done from any location, was everything the KORE team wanted.

There were other benefits, too. For example, efile4Biz’s print/mail and data facilities are certified by the American Institute of Certified Public Accountants (AICPA) to be SOC2-compliant. That means it protects sensitive data against tampering by employing the latest technologies and stringent business practices.

And, as for the time it takes to get invested in learning the process, efile4Biz offers a host of distinctive features, including multi-payer setup, 1099 Corrections, Excel, QuickBooks and Xero uploads, best-in-class data security, and more.

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Katie Nelson, VP, ARightCo.

“The program enabled us to import the information from QuickBooks Online Plus for those customers who use it,” Korenzvit says. “For the others who use lower versions of QuickBooks, we had to enter the information manually, but it was fairly intuitive. Plus, there were only a few of those.”

Once the information was entered, Korenzvit says that issuing the forms came down to a handful of button clicks. “Not having to sort the copies, stuff them into the envelopes and mail them out was worth the investment. We remember receiving handwritten forms in the past. While those were adequate for the IRS, the printed ones certainly looked more professional to us. We were glad to be delivering the same type of professional-looking forms to the recipients of the 1099s on behalf of our clients.”

In addition, the KORE team was able to view all of its clients’ activities from a unified dashboard, which came in handy for tracking each filing throughout the process. The dashboard includes a summary and totals report, which makes it easy to review your work. Also, if an error is made on a submitted form, you can use efile4Biz to file Type 1 corrections.

These were some of the features and benefits the ARightCo. team was looking for when it approached the e-filing process. The firm began working with efile4Biz four years ago, after it found the time and expense of keeping up with 1099 forms too much to bare.

“Having to reprint mid-year 1099s or find ones that were filed already was just becoming too hard,” says Katie Nelson, VP and senior client partner for the Milpitas, Calif., firm, which offers finance and accounting services, strategic advisory, human resources and business support. “E-filing is so much better than printing and sending corrections, and it’s very easy to use.”


Richard Roddis, President, efile4Biz

For example, once you’ve entered your payer and recipient data, you can log into your account to make updates. Once you are logged in, efile4Biz not only safely stores the data under exacting standards, but it also provides full access to filed forms for four years. That means there is never a need to save and print copies for offline storage.

In addition, the simple, end-to-end, cloud-based service eliminates the need for tax filing software, meaning there is no need to download and install, or upgrade software.

Of all the benefits that e-filing offers, the one that keeps helping bridge the road to adoption is that single form, says Rick Roddis, president of efile4Biz and ComplyRight Distribution Services. “You’ve done all your filing and a client comes out of the woodwork and needs a 1099-MISC done. At that point, the easiest thing to do is set up an account and e-file. Then, once someone sees how easy it is, they are hooked and come back the next year to do all their 1099s and W-2s.”

Roddis says one of efile4Biz’s goals is to simplify the e-filing process on the client’s behalf. That is why it continually collects and analyzes feedback from customers to determine what new features and enhancements should be added next.

That is but just one of the myriad reasons firms like KORE Bookkeeping Solutions and ARightCo. are making the e-filing process a permanent part of their firms’ offerings. “After the successful run that first year, we have resolved to continue using this process,” KORE’s Korenzvit says. “The added cost is easily worth the saved effort for us. We feel that every accountant should be using electronic filing process to save time, increase the accuracy, and have more professional-looking results.”