Product and pricing changes can be challenging, especially when you may have already planned out your business year. Additionally, as accountants, you are seen as the authority to your small business clients on all financial matters, and they may be looking to you to explain the changes and reasons why this is happening.
We developed this guide to help you have a smooth conversation with your firm-billed clients about the future transition from Intuit® Online Payroll and Intuit Full Service Payroll to stand-alone QuickBooks Online Payroll. Don’t worry about your client-billed subscriptions; we’ll take care of letting them know about any billing changes. We also understand the important role you play in recommending our products to your clients. Therefore, our goal with this guide is to help you communicate that these changes are a result of a business decision made by Intuit.
1. Set up the situation
We’ll provide you with advance notice of upcoming product and price changes so you can be in-the-know before your clients. We have given you a general heads up by email in May 2021 and are following up with more specifics by email in October 2021. We also have information on Firm of the Future. Check it out
For the transition to stand-alone QuickBooks Online Payroll, we are informing you of the upcoming products and prices well ahead of time and not requiring any moves to the new product or pricing until June 2022. We know that you may need time to manage this change with your clients.
Firm-billed: We usually do not communicate pricing and discount information with your firm-billed (current wholesale discount) clients, understanding that accounting professionals have different practices for billing clients for their services. Additionally, based on feedback from advisory accountant partners, we will not communicate this change to your firm-billed clients because they may not be familiar with the Intuit Online Payroll or Intuit Full Service Payroll products since you, in most cases, run payroll for them. We will leave the communication of the change to firm-billed clients to you.
Client-billed: We will send an email to any client-billed subscriptions when you transition your firm billed clients. Once you’ve been invited to the voluntary transition period, you will be able to see a sample of the email in product before we send it. Additionally, as part of the ProAdvisor Preferred Pricing (described below), they will get 30% off the base fee and 15% off the employee and contractor fee for 12 months when they opt-in to transition.
We encourage you to use the next few months to advise your clients of the future product and price changes so that when they learn about it, they are not surprised and can have a conversation with you on how, if at all, it may impact them.
2. Lead with facts
Be prepared to share and explain what is changing. Here’s is a summary of the timing and product and price changes:
Intuit Online Payroll and Intuit Full Service Payroll timing and product & price changes
- Starting November 2021: Voluntary transition period by invitation from November 2021 through May 2022.
- June 2022: Intuit-driven transition starts for those who haven’t chosen to transition voluntarily.
- For your payroll clients, you will be able to select the service that you feel is best for them between Core, Premium or Elite. If you prefer not to take advantage of the voluntary transition period, we’ll transition your Intuit Online Payroll clients to Core and Intuit Full Service Payroll clients to Premium, though you’ll still be able to change to Core, Premium or Elite after the transition.
Each transition over to a stand-alone QuickBooks Online Payroll service will be seamless, with no work required by you or your clients. The interface you use will change from Intuit Online Payroll or Intuit Full Service Payroll to standalone QuickBooks Online Payroll, but all payroll data stays safely where it is, including reports, notes and alerts.*
*For any of your clients using QuickBooks Online, you will still be able to export data into QuickBooks Online from QuickBooks Online Payroll standalone. Export into QuickBooks Online or Desktop from Core, Premium, or Elite Standalone Payroll
- For your payroll clients, you will be able to manage their 1099s within QuickBooks Online Payroll at no additional cost as part of the stand-alone QuickBooks Online Payroll subscription once they are transitioned.
- For clients for whom you manage 1099s only, these clients will not be transitioned at this time. You can continue to log in to Intuit Online Payroll for this service only.
You and your clients will move to Intuit’s ProAdvisor® Preferred Pricing.* ProAdvisor Preferred Pricing offers best-in-class discounts to our ProAdvisors. You will always have our best pricing on QuickBooks Online Payroll for you and your clients. And, should you choose to take advantage of other products, like QuickBooks Online and QuickBooks Time, ProAdvisor Preferred Pricing offers similar discounts for them. ProAdvisor Preferred Pricing details
3. When possible, have a conversation
If you have the opportunity, it’s always more pleasant to have a conversation with your clients rather than sending an email. You can always follow up with an email or letter later. If your client base is large, we recommend prioritizing your list for the most personal touch your time allows. For emails, include a confirmation receipt notification to verify customers received and opened your email. A best practice is to also end your email with an opportunity for a client to call you directly if they have questions.
4. Tell them what they stand to gain
There is a reason why product and price changes happen. Arm yourself with the value that QuickBooks Online Payroll brings to each and every client. The following points are examples that we encourage you to leverage and use:
These product and price changes will allow us to focus our efforts on our most-current online payroll platform and accelerate new features based on customer feedback. Some great features offered by QuickBooks Online Payroll include:
Features in QuickBooks Online Payroll Core:
- Full Service Payroll with automated taxes and forms (with ON/OFF option).**
- Next-day direct deposit.**
- Auto Payroll for employees paid by direct deposit or paper check.**
- Integrated Health benefits for their team, powered by Allstate Health Solutions.**
- Integrated 401(k) plans powered by Guideline.**
Features in QuickBooks Online Payroll Premium
- Same-day direct deposit.**
- Advanced time tracking with easy, mobile time and location tracking.**
- Expert setup review to make sure their setup is done right.**
- Auto Payroll for employees paid by direct deposit or paper check.**
- HR support center powered by Mineral.**
* Note that your clients do not need QuickBooks Online. You may manage their payroll using standalone QuickBooks Online Payroll.
To learn more, review features in QuickBooks Online Payroll.
Here is a sample email you can leverage to communicate with your firm-billed clients:
Intuit announced upcoming changes to their online payroll product and prices.
- They will be transitioning clients on their Intuit Online Payroll and Intuit Full Service Payroll products to focus on their most current and innovative online payroll products, QuickBooks Online Payroll
- My clients on Intuit Online Payroll will be transitioning to QuickBooks Online Core
- My clients on Intuit Full Service Payroll will be transitioning to QuickBooks Online Premium
- As part of the transition, Intuit will be aligning pricing with the current QuickBooks Online prices which are competitive in the market
Intuit has created some great tools to manage the transition to the new product. The transitions will be seamless and preserve all historical data. I expect to transition my clients on ____. Additionally, as a result of the price changes, your monthly invoice will increase/decrease/stay the same by $___ beginning on ____.
These changes enable Intuit to constantly reinvest in their ecosystem of products to deliver more value for businesses like yours. Some of the value we’ll see in the new online payroll product lineup are access to robust benefits like 401k, integrated health benefits powered by Allstate Health Solutions, advanced time tracking, HR benefits powered by Mineral, workers’ comp by AP Intego as well as same- or next-day direct deposit, allowing you to keep your money longer. If you have any questions about these changes, please let me know.
Your trusted accountant or bookkeeper
We thank you for your continued partnership and look forward to delivering even more value for you and your clients in the future.
* Free QuickBooks Online Payroll Elite subscription available to accounting firms that manage a client’s QuickBooks Online Payroll subscription. Ongoing offer valid while an accountant has an existing and active QuickBooks Online Accountant account.
* ProAdvisor Preferred Pricing. Offer available to accounting firms who register or have registered for QuickBooks Online Accountant (“QBOA”) and use the ProAdvisor Discount option (“QBOA Customer”) for QuickBooks Online Payroll (“QBOP”) subscription fees. The ProAdvisor Discount means that the QBOA user agrees to pay for the client subscription fees (“ProAdvisor Discount”). Discount and list price subject to change at any time at Intuit’s sole discretion. All prices are quoted without sales tax. If you add or remove services, your service fees will be adjusted accordingly. All QuickBooks subscriptions must be entered through ProAdvisor Discount. The discount is valid only for the named individual or company that registered for QuickBooks subscription and cannot be transferred to another client, individual, or company. Cannot be combined with any other Intuit offer. Offer valid for a limited time only, only in the U.S., and is non-transferable. Terms, conditions, pricing, special features, and service and support options subject to change without notice.
* Direct discount pricing. Offer available to accounting firms who register or have registered for QuickBooks Online Accountant (“QBOA”) and use the Client Discount option for the QuickBooks Online Payroll (“QBOP”) subscription fees (“QBOA Customers”). The Client Discount invoicing option means that the client is billed for the QuickBooks subscription fees directly (“Client Discount”). The Client Discount will apply for the first 12 months of the service for their client starting from the date of enrollment, followed by the then-current fee for the service. Discount and list price subject to change at any time at Intuit’s sole discretion. All prices are quoted without sales tax. If you add or remove services, your service fees will be adjusted accordingly. The discount is valid only for the named individual or company that registered for QuickBooks subscription and cannot be transferred to another client, individual, or company. Cannot be combined with any other Intuit offer. Offer valid in the US only and is non-transferable. Terms, conditions, pricing, special features, and service and support options subject to change without notice.
Automated tax payments and filings: Automated tax payments and filing available for state and federal taxes. Enrollment in e-services is required for tax payments and filings only. Automated tax payments and filings for local taxes available in QuickBooks Online Payroll Premium and Elite only.
Next-day direct deposit: Payroll processed before 5 PM PT the day before shall arrive the next business day (excluding weekends and holidays). Requires setup of direct deposit and bank verification. May be subject to eligibility criteria. Deposit delays may occur because of third party delays, risk reviews, or issues beyond Intuit’s control. Available for contractors and employees. Additional fees may apply to direct deposit for contractors.
Auto Payroll: Available if setup for the company is complete. At least one employee has completed setup and has consistent payroll that qualifies for automation (i.e. salaried or hourly with default). Company must complete bank verification if Employee has direct deposit as the payment method, and the first payroll must run successfully. The account must not have a hold.
Same-day direct deposit: Available to QuickBooks Online Payroll Premium and Elite users only. Payroll processed before 7 AM PT shall arrive the same business day (excluding weekends and holidays). Requires setup of direct deposit and bank verification. May be subject to eligibility criteria. Deposit delays may vary because of third party delays, risk reviews, or issues beyond Intuit’s control. Available only for employees, not available for contractors.
QuickBooks Time: Time tracking included in the QuickBooks Online Payroll Premium and Elite subscription services. Features vary. The QuickBooks Time mobile app works with iPhone, iPad, and Android phones and tablets. Devices sold separately; data plan required. Not all features are available on the mobile apps and mobile browser. Data access is subject to cellular/internet provider network availability and occasional downtime due to system and server maintenance and events beyond your control. Product registration required.
Expert setup review: Available upon request for QuickBooks Online Payroll Premium and Elite.
Terms, conditions, pricing, special features, and service and support options subject to change without notice.