Modernize Your CPA Practice's Email Solution and See Your Office's Efficiency Take Wing

Computers & TechnologyEmail

  • Author Brian O'connell
  • Published October 4, 2010
  • Word count 581

It's 4:30 - and you decide you want your husband to buy some wine for dinner. You write "Pick up wine" on a piece of paper, roll it into a tube, attach it to one of your pigeons, and send him flying out the window toward home. There.

It sounds ridiculous - but if you use Microsoft Outlook to check your email, you might as well communicate with your spouse through carrier pigeon.

Yes - it's that out of date.

Let me show you how to easily save 10 hours of productivity per month by simply switching from Outlook to a web-based email solution like Gmail.

Problems with Outlook

In the computer technology timeline, Outlook is very old. The technology is outdated; the program simply was not built to accommodate a high volume of messages and the size of today's email attachments.

Here are some problems you might have with Outlook that drain your productivity:

• Your messages pile up - you try to spend time organizing them into folders but you're still always behind. (est. time lost - 1 hr/wk)

• The search function is slow and cumbersome - and the results are often so bloated that you still waste time sifting through messages. (est. time lost - .5 hr/wk)

• You can't view appointments on your calendar with your smartphone or other mobile device. (est. time lost - .5 hr/wk)

• You get annoying error messages - like "Cannot Connect to Server." These come from problems configuring Outlook and they hinder sending and receiving emails. (est. time lost - .5 hr/mo)

• You struggle with initial setup and reconfiguration challenges. If you're not a techie, making sure your settings are correct and updated is frustrating and time-consuming. (est. time lost - 1 hr/mo)

A Better Solution

You are now able to post and accept email using your own domain name through the Gmail interface using a relatively unknown free service called "Google Apps". Gmail is 100% web-based, and this saves you time, money, and frustration...

Less Expensive: If you use Outlook, you're most likely paying for IT support, Exchange hosting, or email accounts through GoDaddy or another domain registrar. In contrast, Gmail is absolutely free.

Easier: With Gmail and other Web-based email solutions, your inbox looks the same no matter where you access it - and you can do so from any computer or mobile device with an Internet connection. Plus, the outstanding search feature allows you to quickly find any email in seconds. Much better than sorting in Outlook.

And because the software is all online - "in the cloud" - you don't wrestle with installing software or keeping track of updates.

Saves Time: Gmail saves time, too, with keyboard shortcuts. These allow you to compose, answer, and organize your email without ever having to take your hands off the keyboard.

Furthermore, Gmail groups emails into conversations. Instead of getting a new email each time someone replies to a message, all replies are displayed with the original thread. This cuts way down on the number of messages to wade through in your inbox.

Safer: Gmail is backed up on fully redundant servers. If a virus infects your computer, if a hurricane strikes your office, if any disaster compromises your computer - your email remains perfectly secure.

Don't Use Pigeons - Use Google Apps!

Take advantage of current technology. Stop using Outlook - an old email solution - and go with a Web-based email service. When you do, you increase productivity and eliminate time-consuming and frustrating problems.

Brian O'Connell is the owner and founder of CPA Site Solutions, one of the country's largest website design firms oriented entirely to CPA website design and hosting. His company presently provides websites for more than 4000 CPA, accounting, bookkeeping, and tax preparation firms.

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