Deep in the Heart of Taxes

Published: November 20, 2018
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Did you know SmartVault is located in Houston, TX? We love working with our customers all over the world, but it’s always extra special to work with clients in our great home state.

In honor of our 10th birthday, we decided to ask tax firms located all around Texas for their take on the profession, how they see taxes changing in the future, and what exciting things their firms are doing to stay on top of those changes.

As the responses poured in, we started to see some trends which we’ve compiled here. Read on to go Deep in the Heart of Taxes and see why tax preparers love their job and the direction they see tax prep going in the future:

Tax Preparers Love Their Clients
Every person we asked noted that helping their clients was the #1 reason they love their jobs! It’s not just about the numbers, it’s about the relationships built over the years and “the story behind the numbers.”

“I enjoy meeting people, taking time to get to know them and their needs. I want to provide the best services I can and strive to make sure my clients are getting all the tools they need to stay informed about their taxes.”
– Renee C., Alvin, TX

Tax Preparers are Business Partners
Each person we spoke with emphasized the role tax professionals are going to play in helping their clients achieve business and financial goals. Tax preparers no longer just file forms – they are trusted professional and technical advisors.

“Enlightening the public about money saving opportunities the tax system allows and saving people from paying more taxes than they lawfully owe.”
– Windell P., Midland, TX

Artificial Intelligence will Take Over Forms
In order to have the time to become more of a business advisor to their clients, many of the tax preparers we spoke with pointed to the importance of AI in the next 5-10 years. They see basic form filing going away as future technologies automate much of the current basic tax return processes.

“There are more simplified self-filing programs, but also more complicated tax laws and more people starting their own business who will need guidance.”
– Tisho A., Austin, TX

Taxes are Becoming More Complex
It will be essential to have a trusted tax preparer for knowledge and help because every person we spoke to pointed out the growing complexity of taxes. More complicated tax laws will require business owners to have guidance to navigate.

“The future with taxes is at a constant change. We are the one constant thing to our clients and they depend on us for our knowledge and help.”
– Debbie H., Bryan TX

Integrated Tax Workflows
To accommodate many of these changes, tax professionals are beginning to digitize their processes and find ways to work with more flexibility. Many of the tax preparers we spoke with have set up digital workflows that make the process as easy and seamless as possible with online document storage and secure client portals. Exchanging files with clients is no longer done in person by these forward-thinking firms, but online from anywhere, at any time.

“I still see many firms our size doing the same old thing with long hours and low rates filing tax forms. Clients want more than that and we are the type of firm to stay afloat once technology takes over on form preparation… We [also] use mobile technology to enhance the client experience. We have an app that we use to communicate with our clients who do almost everything on their phones now.”
– Craig H., Addison, TX

It’s clear to us that the individuals we spoke with are “deep in the heart of taxes!” Here at SmartVault, we love that we can help tax preparers automate their processes and give them time back to get to know their clients’ stories and become trusted business advisors.