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Tax & AccountingNovember 05, 2021

HeimLantz CPAs and Advisors Improves Efficiency and Quality with CCH Axcess

By: Wolters Kluwer Tax and Accounting

Making lives better. That’s the mission of HeimLantz CPAs and Advisors, based out of Annapolis, Maryland. That philosophy extends to both their staff of 20 CPAs and their clients, who are primarily service providers — doctors, attorneys, and construction companies.

The full-service firm, where Amy Smith, CPA, is the business unit leader of Tax, has five business units: accounting and advisory services, tax, wealth management, technology accounting services/ consulting and evaluation, and litigation support.

As a firm focused on the Lean Six Sigma concept to improve their processes, HeimLantz works to make lives better through a balance of efficiency and quality. One way they’re accomplishing that is by using technology.

As a technology driven firm, we love using CCH Axcess™ Tax and CCH® ProSystem fx® Scan and AutoFlow because they  simplify our workflow and let us know exactly where the tax return is in the entire process.

Amy Smith, CPA Business Unit Leader of Tax, HeimLantz CPAs and Advisors

Tax Workflow with Predictability and Productivity

The firm implemented CCH Axcess Tax and CCH Prosystem fx Scan and AutoFlow to organize their workpapers exactly how they want, and it’s helped give them a view into every part of their tax prep and compliance process.

CCH Axcess Tax also allows the CPAs in their three locations to work in their secure Cloud or outside of it. That contributes to their efficiency goal because even if their system is down, employees can log in via the cloud and keep working.

Since HeimLantz started using CCH Axcess Tax and CCH Pro System fx Scan and AutoFlow, they have noticed a significant improvement in their overall work product. It’s created a consistent workflow that Smith calls beautiful.

In terms of adopting CCH Axcess Tax and CCH ProSystem fx Scan and AutoFlow, the mindset really is just being willing to adopt change and being flexible with how your processes are and really devoting the time to train your people. Just because they’ve done something in the past and they are used to doing it, it’s OK to learn a new way and learn a new process for a better result.

Implementing and Enforcing a Digital Tax Workflow

In addition to CCH Axcess Tax and CCH ProSystem fx Scan and AutoFlow, HeimLantz also uses CCH® ProSystem fx® Engagement to help maximize efficiencies within the firm’s digital tax workflow. As Smith can attest, implementing products like these isn’t a one-day process. It takes not only planning but a commitment to consistency in the ongoing process.

She says that the decision to use Wolters Kluwer technology was easy to make. Partner Tom Lantz, Jr. brought the products to the firm’s attention as something worth looking into for its ability to provide access both in the cloud and outside of it. “That, in itself, made it very simple to pursue as soon as it became available. Then we brought in two of the reps to discuss what CCH Axcess Tax could do and it was a no-brainer after that.”

“Making a smooth transition was all about mindset,” Smith says.

A Seamless Conversion and New Processes

She says it helps that the conversion to CCH Axcess Tax was seamless. ”We had a dedicated account representative who migrated all of our tax returns. So once we logged into CCH Axcess Tax, you could see I think five or six years’ worth of tax return history and everything worked seamlessly. It was really nice to be in a cloud environment. It was wonderful.”

To keep things working smoothly, the firm focuses on continuous training and enforcing processes with its people. “We tell them, ‘Here’s the new process. Please follow it. It’s good for everyone.’ It really has a big impact on the overall quality of our tax returns,” she says.

In terms of adopting CCH Axcess Tax and CCH ProSystem fx Scan and AutoFlow, the mindset really is just being willing to adopt change and being flexible with how your processes are and really devoting the time to train your people. Just because they’ve done something in the past and they are used to doing it, it’s OK to learn a new way and learn a new process for a better result.

Maximizing the Benefits of Cloud Technologies

The firm uses CCH ProSystem fx Engagement to enter or import any trial balances into the trial balance workpaper and to prepare all of its business tax returns. Then, when the trial balance is ready to be imported into CCH Axcess Tax, they use Dynalink to import it seamlessly and flawlessly into the software.

Just as they planned, both the efficiency and quality of HeimLantz’s tax prep process have improved by moving to the cloud and focusing on taking advantage of advanced technologies.

“We’ve also realized tips and tricks in terms of not importing retained earnings or streamlining the tie-out process, once the trial balance is imported, to make it very consistent and easy in terms of tying down that balance sheet and eliminating any differences,” Smith explains.

The main advantage in terms of moving to the cloud and using a digital tax workflow with CCH Axcess Tax and CCH ProSystem fx Scan and AutoFlow, and even for CCH ProSystem fx Engagement, is that we’re focusing on less data entry by our staff‑level team members and focusing on the ultimate product. As a result, we’re also able to have a consistent client experience. We want everybody doing the same process to get a consistent result so that it’s not dependent on who you are working with or who your client has as a CPA advisor.

Download the case study to read all of HeimLantz CPAs and Advisors results, including how they lean on Lean Six Sigma Principles to build a custom workflow and create process efficiencies. 

Wolters Kluwer Tax and Accounting

Wolters Kluwer Tax and Accounting is a leading provider of software solutions and expertise that helps tax, accounting and audit professionals research and navigate complex regulations, comply with legislation, manage their businesses and advise clients with speed and accuracy.

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