Taxpayers own their TaxCaddy accounts. They can access their accounts at any time and download any prior year return, even if they are no longer a client of your firm.
This positions your clients as collaborators, not just guest users. They can personalize their TaxCaddy account with a profile image, add (or remove) a spouse, and track their engagements over time. Old fashioned online portals only give users conditional access, which creates a negative experience for the end user. Taxpayers should never feel that their tax returns or other personal data are held hostage to secure their business.
When clients feel that they have ownership of their own accounts and can trust that their tax season experience will stay consistent throughout the years, they are more likely to stay engaged and use the provided features. Empowering your taxpayers lays the foundation for a strong relationship and will help client retention.
L. Gary Boomer, Visionary and Strategist at Boomer Consulting, Inc., understands this well. In response to firms who expressed resistance to client-owned accounts, he said the following:
"We see this as an antiquated way of thinking about client relationships. This is thinking about what the CPA firm wants, not what the client wants. Clients won’t use software unless it is built for their wants and needs, not their CPA's. If the clients don’t use it, the CPAs don’t benefit. So we caution firms to think twice before going down this unproductive path of thinking first about how you want the software to work and instead think about how your clients want it to work."