Whatever did our practice do before SuiteFiles? I’ll admit it’s hard to remember as we became customers in October 2013.
Adopting SuiteFiles was part of our move to Office 365. We moved our files, physically located on a server, into the cloud. SharePoint is great but it wasn’t user friendly – especially not back in 2013! Prior to this move, we found files by drilling down through folders – D: drive, clients, client x, appropriate year then file. To save a file it was the same process in reverse. We could also search in the File Explorer program but when there’s a large number of files, this took forever. It was a “go and make a cup of tea and a toastie” while you waited situation.
Saving emails was equally as painful – it meant converting the email to a PDF then dragging the file into the appropriate folder. Then there was file sharing – don’t get me started on that, but need I say, “multiple versions of the same document”?
It was all so long-winded and finding ad-hoc, random files you were searching for was nearly impossible.
Discovering SuiteFiles was a game changer in this space. It became so easy to find files – a simple search and there it was. The program’s task management function meant we could share a file as a task, see when the task was completed, and even request a staff member to upload a file.
But the biggest time saver was filing emails. What used to take five minutes or more for each email was now done in a matter of seconds with the SuiteFiles Outlook ‘connector’. Not only did it make saving the body of the email a simple process, it automated saving any attachments. Taking emails out of individual mailboxes and centralizing in SuiteFiles has so many benefits including helping succession planning and making correspondence easily shared across the team.
Over the years, SuiteFiles has gotten better and better. It integrates with the cloud ATO (Australia’s tax department) document processor we used, which meant filing a client’s incoming ATO correspondence was easy. It was processed through the third-party and automatically saved in SuiteFiles. This meant we were proactive – if a client rang about a document in their MyGov (Australian government online services for citizens) we could see it instantly in SuiteFiles. No need to log in to online services for agents and download, it was instantly at our fingertips.
SuiteFiles also integrated with our practice management software. This meant we could drag and drop documents into our practice management solution while working on a client’s file and have it saved in SuiteFiles. Constantly swapping apps to undertake tasks is lost time; being able to do everything you need within one app is a time saver.
SuiteFiles is now a complete package with PDF tools, a client portal, task management, and digital signing. I can’t imagine running an accounting practice (to be honest, any document-heavy business!) without using it.
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