Small businesses, as well as the self-employed, now have even more opportunities to leverage AI that will make their companies run smoothly.
Intuit QuickBooks has announced several new innovations at Toronto’s QuickBooks Connect conference, including an AI platform, a payroll management solution and more. The new advances in QuickBooks, a leading software for accounting and small businesses, will help Canadian entrepreneurs break through the different technological barriers they may face.
“We’re trying to leverage all the data we have and apply AI to it,” explains Sasan Goodarzi, EVP of the small business group at Intuit. “It’s focused on delivering three benefits: making more money, eliminating work and drudgery, and working in a way where you have complete confidence.”
The new QuickBooks Assistant is a virtual AI-based assistant that offers conversational chat and allows self-employed and small business owners the ability to easily stay on top of their finances. It combines natural language processing and data-driven insights to make business operations easier for entrepreneurs.
“The essence of QuickBooks Assistant is that when you follow our customers around in their office, they spend a lot of time making basic decisions,” says Goodarzi. “We have the data, and we are applying our technology to that data so you can just ask it questions and we’ll answer it in seconds, versus you searching for it or using your instinct and maybe being wrong.”
“It’s transformative here and now. Accountants and bookkeepers can be advisors, and those who work for themselves can think about their business itself rather than how their business is doing,” he adds.
The assistant can help with tax obligations, expense tracking, cash flow, profitability and more. All a user needs to do is ask a simple question and the assistant can bring back an answer in seconds.
“If you think about Google—you ask yourself a question and you wish you knew the answer, well Google knows it. We’re doing that same thing for small businesses, getting at the right information for a personal business,” says Jeff Cates, president and CEO of Intuit Canada.
The assistant has been testing to a small audience and will be releasing very shortly, first to the self-employed and then to small business owners. Users can access it through an app or online.
Intuit also announced that QuickBooks Projects is available to all Online Plus users in Canada meaning entrepreneurs can now organize their finances much more efficiently via project. Users can easily invoice progress on a job in stages based on the original estimate for the project.
The way QuickBooks users interact with money is also being updated. The new Payments options let small businesses create “payments-enabled” invoices in less than a minute, allowing customers to pay with a credit card online and tracking those invoices in a seamless manner. Advanced Payroll is another new feature allowing small businesses a faster and more efficient way to stay compliant with CRA payroll regulations.
Other announcements surrounding a new tax management system as well an accountant directory were also made, finding new ways for Intuit customers to leverage the software’s capabilities to make sure taxes are as pain-free and thorough as possible.