After writing a post about QuickBooks Online and claiming it “was not ready for power users,” I got several calls from people I know at Intuit. First, let me say that my intention was to get their attention and help them make a better product. I’ve always sought building a “mind blowing customer experience” and I want the same for my partners. I am a huge fan of QB and I really want to see QBO successful. Turns out, so do they.
I spoke with a senior manager of app development first. He is charged with developing mobile apps for QBO. In short, he listened, carefully. I told him I wanted a dashboard, you know, a snapshot of my company on my iPhone. It’s a small screen, so simple and basics are all I seek. Cash in, cash out, balances, bills due, invoices past due, etc. I also asked for reports. I explained that I’m a business owner, not an accountant. I use QBO due to its simplicity and accessibility. While I have billed a client from my iPhone, what I want to view on this device is information as it relates to my company. The stuff you want to read while sitting in your favorite chair or waiting at the airport. His response was sincere and I expect my comments will be addressed, soon.
The next call was with one of Intuit’s loyalty brand managers. She was a little disappointed to read my original post and I don’t blame her. I was harsh, to the point and straight. But she wasn’t mad at me. She loves her product and her company. She wanted to fix it. We spent an hour and forty minutes talking and I showed her my gripes. She acknowledged each and sent them soaring up the flagpole to those in charge.
Then, she gave me a demo and an explanation of some features I had missed. I was pleasantly surprised. There’s a ton of power under that hood and it just takes a little getting used to the differences and nuances. My experience prior had been with QuickBooks desktop, probably like you.
While the items I requested are important, what I learned yesterday was helpful and actually eliminated many of my concerns. Even better, new features and enhancements happen very regularly so I expect many great things to come.
When I joined Spotify, after being a long time Rhapsody user, I hated the app. Today, less than a year later, it’s light years ahead. Same with my iPhone’s iOS. While Microsoft Office went backwards with overdevelopment, my expectation after speaking with Intuit is that they have an impressive fresh thinking team. We, the users, have to open our minds and accept the change. While we shouldn’t be expected to accept mediocrity, we must realize that to have an online product that provides us anywhere access and greater functionality in many ways, we simply need to be patient as it evolves and more importantly, open our minds to rethinking how we do things. Technology evolves, so must we.
Is it ready for power users? I didn’t think so before but now, I think it just might be. Embrace the change as the cloud is only going to grow larger and faster and soon it will be the chosen platform for all software. In many cases, it already is.
I built an application service provider in 2000. We “pushed” apps over a Citrix network. Back then, the web wasn’t mature enough to tackle the task we needed so the Citrix model made sense and it worked, brilliantly.
At the same time we launched, so did Salesforce.com. It wasn’t a great solution at first, but today, it dominates in the CRM world.
QBO launched after the tools and infrastructure was mature. It gets the job done and with a little bit of training, you might just fall in love with it. schoolofbookkeeping.com is currently building it’s next few courses using QuickBooks Online as a platform. Our intention is to help Intuit and QBO become the platform of choice for bookkeepers, accountants and business owners worldwide.