The Benefits of Getting QuickBooks ProAdvisor Certified
I can’t remember when the QuickBooks ProAdvisor® program first started – maybe in the late 1990s? I do know that I tried it out when it was free and decided not to pay for it when Intuit® switched to a paid model. My thinking at the time was that I was a CPA and I was teaching QuickBooks® nationally to both end users and accountants, so what more credentials did I need?
I soon realized that there were a lot of accountants out there and not all of them knew QuickBooks like I knew (and know) QuickBooks. I needed some additional credential(s) to let small businesses know what makes me stand apart from other accounting types and QuickBooks consultants. So, I joined the ProAdvisor program in 2002.
I’ve been impressed at how Intuit has improved the program over the years by including software and services, providing additional training, and adding new certifications. All of these tools enrich my knowledge and make me a better ProAdvisor. I’ve now switched the focus of my practice from mostly tax and accounting to primarily QuickBooks training and consulting.
As I speak at events around the country, I often get asked the question: “How do you find your clients?” I think the better question is: “How do my clients find me?” I have developed relationships with other accountants, consultants and IT people, but I will tell you that most (80+ percent) of my referrals come from the Find-A-ProAdvisor page. I’ve worked hard at maintaining my certifications and improving my profile so that I stay near the top of that search engine. I also try and get my clients to post reviews. That’s not always so easy, even though it doesn’t take too much effort for them to post the review. As a result, I stay near the top of the search and am never lacking for work.
As I was switching from tax to consulting, I had to decide what kind of work I wanted to do. I decided to focus my QuickBooks consulting on working with more mid-size businesses, helping them to convert from other systems and find appropriate third-party solutions to expand the functionality of QuickBooks. This is the type of work that I like doing. Because my profile states that this is the type of work I do, those are the types of calls and emails I receive. I love my job!
My advice to others who want to do QuickBooks consulting is this: Join the ProAdvisor program, get certified and take time to think about what exactly you want to do. It may be working in a particular vertical market, bookkeeping, part-time CFO or anything else that interests you. Then, write up your profile, add a picture, get your clients to post reviews and of course, make sure you make your profile public. Please feel free to contact me if you want to discuss.