Hello and welcome to our first series of Accountant Connect certification videos. My name is Darren Root. I'm the founder of Rootworks, and I will be one of two co-hosts throughout the certification course. My background is I practice public accounting for over 30 years, ran a significant payroll business inside of a public accounting firm. Then I started a company called Rootworks, and we help accounting firms across the country become what we call modern firms. So with that, I'm going to introduce my co-host today, Rhonda. Rhonda is with ADP. Rhonda, I'll let you introduce yourself. Thank you, Darren. My name is Rhonda Shurter, and I'm on the product team for ADP. For the last six years, I've been dedicated to the accountant channel. Accountants are really critical partners to ADP, and we've been on a journey to create a one-stop shop for accountants to be able to easily service their clients through Accountant Connect. I'm excited to share all the features we have throughout this series we're going to record for you guys. It should be a lot of fun, Rhonda. Our listeners have a practitioner, and we have the ADP side of creating this whole thing, so this should be good. Yeah. They'll get both sides of the story. Perfect. Before we kick off, Rhonda, can you give just a little bit more background on the concept of creating Accountant Connect, what it's purpose is? Yeah, absolutely. In working with accountants throughout this journey, you're valuable partners to ADP, and we know time is important to you. You need to be able to have quick access to your clients, whether it's helping them with their payroll, their general ledger, any accounting software integrations or getting reports and tax forms to help with bookkeeping, audit, etc., so your critical and small businesses. We really wanted to make it easy for you to service your clients. ADP has many solutions. In working with accounts, I understood the pain points in which, before Accountant Connect, they would have multiple logins. We really wanted to create one place for you to come to be able to get all the access that you need for all of your clients on ADP solutions as well as a host of free tools and resources. This is really to strengthen our partnership to make things easier for you to partner with ADP. Accountants, realistically, Rhonda, could be using ADP Run for partners, or I like to call it ADP Run Wholesale, right? Yes. So they could be leveraging ADP's technology in processing payrolls through the firm. They could have clients that are on ADP Run retail. They could have workforce now, customers, more of that mid-market customer. They could have customers that are in the outsource or the PEO side of the house, which you guys call? TotalSource. TotalSource. A firm could just be outsourcing payroll completely to ADP for one of their one customers. Accountant Connect, in my mind, Rhonda is a place that brings all those pieces together, so the accountant just has one place to go to get all the information that they need. Is that correct? That's correct. It's really one access point. It's a connection between you and your client, and you can modify that access at any time, add new access as you expand your client base. It's really there for you to have easy access to help save you time, so you're not hunting for the documents or reports or accounting integrations that you need for your clients. You can come to Accountant Connect and be able to do all of those things on your own without having to go through your client or maintain separate logins onto your client's account. We'll even talk about, as we go through a series of sessions, how to automate a lot of that as well, saving you lots of time and energy. Let's just kick off. Rhonda, if I am new to this and I don't even have a login, let's talk about what the first step is. Sure. On adp.com or through your dedicated ADP sales rep, they can give you the registration link, or you can Google it, and you can sign up for Accountant Connect yourself. It's completely free. It's an easy registration process. Once you sign up, that first user that signs up becomes the administrator for the account. This is your firm account. You can expand it and manage it, whatever, however, it suits your needs. You can add additional users. You can control the security, all of that. What happens if you're in a firm and you have one staff person that thought signing up for her Accountant Connect was a good idea, so they did that. Then you have another staff person that unbeknownst to them, signed up for an Accountant in Connect account. Which one's the firm account or what do you do? It's a good question. There's different ways to do this. We do recommend as a best practice that you have one Accountant Connect instance for your firm. This allows you complete visibility into all your clients. If each member of your firm has their own instance, you lose that ability, have a complete visibility into your book of business. We do recommend that you start that way, but we understand sometimes people get eager and they create those accounts. There's a couple of different ways that you can do that. You can work within your firm, determine which one has maybe the most clients linked. Then you can work on either automatically sending invitations to your client and asking them to connect to the instance that you've decided will be your master firm Accountant Connect login. Then they can connect and once they're finished that connection, which is completely automated, they would appear in that master list. The other thing you can do is we have a dedicated account and help desk. If you're struggling with merging accounts, if you go to that little phone icon in the upper right-hand corner, your dedicated account and help desk is listed there and they can help you with any troubles in terms of merging accounts. For me just to state that back to you and make sure I'm right. We want one account per firm and we want to figure out how to get to one account. If you have multiple accounts, let's work to get to one. Let's create it, make sure one's the master and try to integrate those two, and then get rid of the account that's no longer needed, correct? Correct. Perfect. Now we have a login. We're in the Platform, you show up on a dashboard. In this first session, what we want to do is talk about things like my firm profile. We want to talk about firm settings. We want to talk about the service connect component and notifications. That's what we're going to cover in this first session. To go to My Profile Rhonda want you to lead us through that. Sure, My Profile is where you have general information. This is the information that you provided when you initially registered. This has your contact information, including your email and your phone number which are really important because this is how we are going to communicate with you as well as authenticate you for security. Security is a big concern. We do have an enhanced security within Accountant Connect, security levels that you can manage as well as security that we have built into the application. Your contact information from an email and phone number perspective is very important. Also within the profile area, you can also change and manage your password as well. Just to make sure everybody's on the same page. To get to My Profile, your initials should be in the top right corner of the dashboard, if you will, or on the Platform. If you click on your initials, the first area you will see is My Profile. As Rhonda just said, some pretty simple information. Not a lot to go through there, but definitely worth getting that filled out first and foremost. From there Rhonda, I think the next prime more meady area is the Firm Settings, which again is in the top right under your initials there. Just click your initials, the drop-down will come up and you'll see Firm Settings. Let's walk through the different components of Firm Settings starting with Firm Information. Yes, so this again is the general information that was provided when the registration to Accountant Connect was created. You have the firm information and the primary firm contact for your Accountant Connect account. Then we have two other areas which are firm access and user access. This is where you're going to start setting up the members of your firm and assigning different roles as well as the security permissions for each of the users. Also, once you have linked clients under Firm Access, we give you the ability to bulk request or expand your permissions that you have for access to each of your clients. Again, time-saving. We want to make sure that you can easily do things in a bulk fashion, not one off. You can quickly go through and say, You know what our firm has expanded to offer payroll services. We need to expand our payroll access to our clients. You can click down all through those boxes and submit one button and it's going to send automated invitations to all of those clients requesting that additional access. Just walking back through this again on Firm Contact, how do you decide who that is? It's automatically determined with the person that first registers. That will be the primary Firm Contact. Now, that is somebody that we would reach out to. Initially, if we had questions about the firm, but under User Access, as we'll get to, you can assign multiple different administrators who also have authority over the account. If you screwed this up from the very beginning and you had somebody starting Accountant Connect account and connect some clients. Maybe that person it's not there anymore, host of different things. What do you do if the Firm Contacts not who you want it to be? You can change that information and just save the changes and that will save it for your Firm Account. Perfect. The fact that you are the creator of the overall Accountant Connect instance doesn't mean that that has to be you, correct? Correct. As we move to Firm Access, if you're new to the whole thing, chances are you have no clients showing up. Would that be true? That is correct. Yes. If you have no clients there what's the problem with that? You don't see any of your clients, what's going on? Well, the process for getting clients attached to you. You may have referred them, they may have you as a contact on their account, but you want to actually make that Accountant Connect connection and the clients have access to that in their payroll system. Whether it be run or workforce now, or total source, they have a screen where they can proactively go and connect to you and grant you access. Or you can automatically requests that access through Accountant Connect, which we'll talk about in a future session. It's an automated process, but that's how you get that client list populated is by making those connections. We also build that into our processes at ADP. When new clients are starting, we are also asking them to make that connection in the beginning. It could happen that you would come in there and you would automatically see some of your clients that are newly connected to you. We are really trying to make it as easy for both the client and the account to make that connection and manage it. Probably a best practice for this Rhonda would be for whoever is managing the payroll department to go through all their entire client list and identify who is an ADP customer. No matter which platform of ADP that they happen to be using and then start reaching out and making those connections. Would that be a good idea? That would be a great idea. Yeah. That's how you get the value from Accountant Connect is really having the clients there so you're going to have that easy access. Yes. Let's get Firm Access populated. Now let's click over and take a look, a minute Rhonda at user access. Again can you explain there's a couple of different items on the left there you have users and then there's the concept of root groups. Can you talk about those two things? Yes. The users are all the members of your firm that you would add as a user to this Firm Account. You can see that little button Add User. Once you click on that, you can have unlimited members, there's no limit to the number of users you can add. You enter their information, their contact information, and then their role. Accountant Connect is very simplistic in that there are really two roles. There's an administrator who has the ability to create new users, assign permissions, create groups, and manage the security really of the Accountant Connect account. Then you have contributors, those are users. They have all the access that an administrator grants to them, but they cannot create new users or change security permissions. It's fairly simple. We try to keep everything as easy as possible and clear in Accountant Connect. Once you determine the role of the user you want to create, then you select the access you want them to have. This is important because you don't want to give access to members of your firm that they don't need. We want to be very conscious of security. Your firm can be set up in many different ways. Perhaps you have an area that specializes in payroll, and you have another area that specializes in audit or bookkeeping, they have different access needs. Somebody that doesn't specialize in payroll really doesn't need payroll access. You can limit their access to just reports and tax forms and general ledger so they can manage the accounting integrations, or vice versa, somebody that just runs payroll but doesn't really do the bookkeeping, you could just give them payroll access. It's really flexible. Again, through that firm access, you can request and remove access whenever you need to as well. Then there's another area called client groups. This is another enhanced security level, where you may want to restrict members of your firm to see certain clients. Using that same example, if you have members of your firm that specialize in payroll, then you would only give them access to the clients that they run payroll for, or somebody that specializes in audit or advisory services. You may give them access to a specific set of clients. It's very flexible, you can create groups however you want. If you have multiple offices and you want to separate it that way, you could have a different group for different offices or for different functions in your firm. Makes a lot of sense. Before we leave this page. In my instance, Rhonda, I see run and done status. I don't know if everybody sees that. Is that a feature that we should talk through? That is actually a brand new feature that just came out, right now that is specific to our run for partners that are leveraging Accountant Connect, but we are looking to bring that over to run as well. There are some features that are specific to payroll product, and the Accountant Connect will know who you are and what you have access to and adjust accordingly. If you're watching this and you don't see that, chances are you're not a run for partners customer, is at a true statement? Correct. But if you are a run for partners costumer, like I am, that's why I see that. Yes. If you do see that, then the functionality of that is what Rhonda? Within that area you can see as any of your clients are going through the run and done. If you don't know what that is, is basically for your clients that have a very standard payroll. There's not many changes. You can actually set it to automatically run. This is where you would be able to check the status to make sure everything is going well, in the event that there was an error for a particular pay cycle, this is where you would come to find any errors or issues that might have come up that would need your attention. I guess an example would be if you're a single member S corp and you're the officer and you're paying yourself and you pay yourself the same every two weeks, might as well set them up and run and done and you don't have to mess with it. Yes, exactly. Perfect. Let's go back now to essentially the dashboard. Rhonda, let's talk a little bit about the telephone icon at the top. I like to think of it as Service Connect, which is what it says. Can you walk through those different components and what this is all about? Sure. Service Connect, which is also available under the question mark as well, or is known as service requests, that feature allows you to actually submit a request to your dedicated account in help desk. Within ADP we have a service center that is dedicated specifically to accounts. You may not have time to chat or to get on the phone and make a phone call. This is your opportunity to submit a request to the dedicated account in help desk, and they will respond to your request and you can come back here and get the status of that. That's the service requests, right? Yeah. Obviously, is that your sales rep's phone number that shows up there as well? Also in that area, in addition to service requests, you have the accountant's support number. This is your dedicated accountant help desk. They are dedicated specifically to accountants and are there to support you for whatever you need. Then also if you have a dedicated ATP Sales Rep, this is where their information would display. Let's say you're in here, you're like, you know what, we've just on-boarded a new client to the firm. I'd really like to get them engaged with ADP to discuss their payroll needs. There's a refer a client button there. You can send a message that will go directly to your dedicated sales rep. If you don't have a dedicated sales rep, it will go to our sales department and someone will reach out and contact that client for you. Perfect. Explain the difference to me between the telephone icon and the question mark icon. Sure. The telephone is like all your support. If you need support from an accountant help desk or submit a service ticket, or you want to talk to your representative, the information is there. The Help icon there, that's where you can go and track the status or submit service requests, which is also available under the phone icon. Then we have some videos and some general FAQs. They're available under health. There's some similar functionality between those two icons. From the service request perspective? Yes. I think the last piece that we're going to discuss in this section, Rhonda is just notifications. What shows up in notifications, which is the bell icon. Yeah. Exactly. This is a really nice feature that we've added in and what it does is we've done a really good job within our payroll systems about letting users know if our clients know if something is gone wrong with their account. If they've missed a payroll, if they have an excessive tax liability, if they're missing a specific tax ID that is critical to running their taxes. We would tell the client what we've done is we've brought those same notifications directly into account connect, because what we understood is that the client would get this notification, call in a panic, reach out to their accountant and say what happened and you would be caught off guard. We wanted to make sure that you are also getting the same information that we were telling our clients so that you can either proactively reach out to them or you can also just be aware in general of what's happening with your clients accounts. I think the important thing to take from that oftentimes when you see a bell icon like that or notification icon, it's like, hey, we have a new feature or something along that line. And those numbers have a tendency just to tick up and nobody pays any attention to them. But in this case, this is an important icon. If there's a notification there, the user here should be paying attention to those notifications. Absolutely. These is all client-related alerts. There are no additional messaging. All of that additional messaging informational etc, is on the dashboard which we'll cover in another session. So this is specifically about your clients. You can filter through those as well so you can look at just the urgent items. Anything's that's informational that might not require action but wanted to let you know something happened with the account or something that you may need to look at so you can filter through those. You can search by clients. If you're on the phone and a client's called you and said, hey, something's going on with my account, you can quickly come to notifications, insert the client's name there, and it will bring up any notifications specifically about that client. The notifications are also available on the client care area as well, but we make try to make things available where we think you'll be looking and make sure that you can find what you're looking for. But this would be where you can come to quickly see what's going on with your clients. A lot of great stuff, Rhonda in this session, but big takeaway for me is account and connect as home-base for all my clients that are with ADP that I need to engage with or that the firm engages with. Yes and we'll go into more in additional training sessions but this was the general setting up your firm and understanding how to get information and get support for your account. But as we go forward, we'll go into more about all the additional tools and resources that are in here for free which are really valuable. So excited to share those as well as we proceed. Awesome. Rhonda, great job today. Thank you. Thanks, everybody for staying with us through Session 1. We look forward to Session 2.