Tuesday, September 9, 2014 - 09:00

Mark your calendars and join us at events to learn more about accounting, bookkeeping and the technology that is changing our industry.


Meetup For QuickBooks and Business Coaches

September 10, 2014, Wednesday at 6:30pm. Featuring Karen Magno talking about Transaction Pro Importer. Learn how to convert files and get imports completed. 1810 Embarcadero Road, Palo Alto, California.  Free to attend.


Free Webinar: How to Simplify Your Approval Workflow

September 16th, Tuesday at 11am PT.  Chris from rinehimerbaker and Natasha from Bill.com present best practices, technology, and tips to simplify your accounts payable process.  The webinar will cover how to speed up and simplify your AP workflow, setting up the right systems and protocols, and how Bill.com can help with the process. 


Cloud Summit 2014

September 17-19 in San Diego, California.  Our CEO René Lacerte will be speaking at two sessions.  Look for René or our VP of marketing, Tanya Roberts, at the Bill.com table and enter to win a free drawing for a great prize.

Be sure to attend René's talks: 

  • Grow Your Practice and Increase Profits with Bill.com on Thursday, September 18th from 3-3:50 PM PT.  René will highlight how cloud-based AP, AR and document management solutions can help practices introduce new, high-value client services and firm revenue streams.
  • Accounting firm pricing and how accountanting businesses can capture more value on Friday, September 19th from 10-10:50 AM PT.


Intuit QuickBooks Accounting Virtual Conference


September 22, Monday and September 23, Tuesday.  Join us at the Bill.com virtual booth.  Enter a free drawing for a great prize.  Meet other Bill.com customers in the booth.  Chat with Bill.com staff, including our CEO, René Lacerte.  We will also be announcing exciting product information at our booth.


Friday, September 5, 2014 - 16:32

Guest Blogger: Jason M. Blumer, CPA, Chief Innovation Officer at Blumer & Associates


There’s a big difference between buying a jar of spaghetti sauce and a new car. 

To buy spaghetti sauce, you simply enter a grocery store, compare brands and posted prices, select the one you prefer and take it to the cashier. Your mission is accomplished in five minutes. 

To buy a car, you often have to haggle for the right price – spending hours negotiating with a dealership. People that like the art of negotiation probably walk off with a nice deal. Those who don’t, probably don’t want to think about it after they’ve driven off the lot. 

When you think about it, there are a lot of ways to price goods - face value, haggling, bulk, or beyond. 

For professional services such as accounting, most practitioners default to the traditional method of hourly billing. Hourly billing has long been the standard pricing approach for accountants. It is an extremely clear process. A client hires you for your expertise on audit, tax preparation, write-up/reconciliation, general consulting or other services. The firm bills the client for the amount of time that task took. Pretty simple, right? 

The problem with hourly billing is that it places the perceived value on the labor of the accountant, instead of on the service that the client wants. It basically results in the treatment of professional accounting or tax services as a commodity measured in units of time. This diminishes both the importance and potentially the quality of the services the firm is providing. 

In other words, when the clock is ticking, that’s all everyone is thinking about. The practitioner thinks about the billables, while the client thinks of it as a big bill coming their way. No one is really considering the true value of the service being performed.

Hourly Billing Pros  

  • Easy to implement
  • Easy to on-board new clients
  • Simple billing model for clients to understand 
  • Straightforward client service and support  

Hourly Billing Cons  

  • Lack of premium charges for valued services such as expedited returns
  • Money is not collected until after the service is completed
  • Potential billing “surprises” when projects take longer than expected
  • “Live and die by the clock” mentality degrades the ability to innovate  

While hourly billing is still the relative king of the accounting world, here are two alternative pricing models to consider: 

  1. Fixed-fee billing
  2. Value pricing


Fixed-Fee Billing

Fixed-fee billing is not a stranger to many accounting firms. With this method, pricing is based on individual transactions such as common tax preparation. After an initial discussion and agreement, both sides know how much the services will cost. The positive attribute of this structure is that it makes cash flow more predictable.  

But, it doesn’t address what the value of the service actually is to the client or what it is worth to them. The conversation centers on how much it would cost to perform a standard service only. 

Fixed-Fee Billing Pros 

  • Up-front pricing and collection to enable strong cash flow  
  • Clarity on all billing and no surprises for the clients on the bill  
  • Easy to onboard clients  

Fixed-Fee Billing Cons  

  • Potential of missed opportunities to expand services as client is focused only on the service they have paid for
  • Necessitates a strong understanding of your time and labor associated with your services to ensure prices produce target revenue and cover costs
  • May underestimate actual value of combined services or result in undervalued services when complexities arise

Value Pricing 

Value pricing is gaining popularity among innovative firms. At its heart, it works to determine the true value of services that a firm provides to a client.  It’s built around individual client relationships and their perception of the value of the services they provide.

With value pricing, the costs and specific services are determined and agreed upon prior to service and often with a bundle of services included. Many firms using this model also assess payment prior to performing the service, including autodrafts for clients who will be billed on a subscription basis.  It’s also more time-consuming to implement since it is based on building a strong relationship with the client, knowing their business thoroughly and determining which services hold the most value for them. 

 Value Pricing Pros  

  • High client loyalty because you’re only performing services for them that they deem as valuable
  • Ability to charge more for your services because they are high-value services
  • Bundled service pricing can be spread across the year, smoothing cash flow

Value Pricing Cons 

  • Difficult model to implement because it requires extensive research, work and examination of processes 
  • Onboarding new clients takes longer because you’re building a customized service pack for each one 
  • Necessity to be strategic with the individuals you hire, as they must be able to perform specific functions well or they can jeopardize the model. 

Want more information?  Learn about these alternative methods of billing by downloading a complimentary eBook on effective pricing strategies for accounting firms.    

Friday, August 22, 2014 - 08:42

Darren Linscott, VP of Products, Bill.com

Bill.com has excellent sync and integration with many accounting packages.  A popular pairing is to use Bill.com with QuickBooks Online, QuickBooks Pro or QuickBooks Premier.  Our customers frequently tell us how much Bill.com has improved their working life compared to the days when they were using QuickBooks alone.

I’m sharing three excerpts that our valued customers recently posted in the Intuit App Center community. I hope that these stimulate ideas on how Bill.com can make your accounting processes more efficient and enjoyable.  

Thank you to everyone in the community for not only providing usage tips, but for also rating Bill.com 5 out of 5 stars. 

“Super Helpful for Document Management”

BrianC, July 2014

I've used the accounts payable module from Bill.com for the past 18 months and love it!  We are a home builder, and pay lots of vendors.

1. Print and mail checks (or send direct deposits) for me. This unchains me from my office and allows me to travel or spend more time on job-sites. It's also way easier than generating PDF files, loading check stock in the printer, stuffing envelopes, finding stamps and putting the checks in the outgoing mail. Not to mention the annoying remittance stubs from some vendors. They print a copy of the first page on the bottom of the check.

2. Document management. You'll never be behind on your filing, because once you scan or forward an invoice into bill.com and pay the bill it files it under the vendor.

3. Generate pretty good archive CD's that have all of the cleared checks and copies of invoices that can be paid.

“Efficiency for Decentralized Entities”

RBC CPA, July 2014

Bill.com has allowed for centralized bookkeeping and oversight of multiple entities through flexible user setup and security, integration with QB, and intuitive functionality. As the single overseeing bookkeeper for over a dozen entities, Bill.com has provided me with great efficiency and commonality across entities. E-payment to vendors and e-receipt from customers is a huge plus. Finally, Bill.com's online chat support is some of the best I have experienced, period. Consistently knowledgeable, professional, and friendly

“Highly Recommended”

gr8blue, July 2014

We have been using Bill.com for over 3 years and have had great success with using it to better manage and more easily pay our Vendors. The calendaring in Bill.com to show when invoices payments are due is priceless, as is the seamless integration with QBO.”

Thanks again to the community for sharing their experience with Bill.com.  We really appreciate the support and feedback.

Wednesday, August 20, 2014 - 14:39

Darren Linscott, VP of Products, Bill.com

In our Bill.com Insiders exclusive customer community, I recently had the opportunity to respond to a question from Aaron O at Bridgeview CFO Solutions, LLC.  

Aaron asked me a straightforward question about our overall business.

How is the company doing in this competitive market? Specifically, is Bill.com winning the battle of being the premier provider of cloud based payables and receivables?

Here’s how I answered Aaron.

“We believe that Bill.com plays a unique role in payables and receivables. We work with accounting systems to facilitate the movement of funds (payments) and enable workflow. We don’t compete directly with traditional cloud-based payables and receivables providers, like accounting system vendors.

Instead, we think our biggest competitors are manual processes (for example, printing and mailing checks yourself or using manual ACH), as well as point payment solution providers. We are the biggest business payment network with over 500,000 members, and we move over $12B in funds annually. As a result, we believe we’re doing extremely well.”

I encourage all of our customers to join the Bill.com Insiders community and ask me questions about the product, company, or general business advice.  The executive team at Bill.com has a very broad range of experience and we would love to use our experience to help our customers improve their businesses. In turn, we’d love to get your feedback on how to make the product better for your business.

If you have questions for our executive team, please ask them in the Bill.com Insiders customer community here.


Tuesday, August 12, 2014 - 14:13

Geraldine Cruz, Senior Director, Product Marketing

When we first launched the Bill.com™ Sync for Intacct®, our goal was to give Intacct users a simple way to pay their bills and update their accounting system with payment data. Hundreds of customers adopted the solution, and gave us great feedback on enhancements they wanted to see.

We’re happy to announce the launch of a new sync that gives you the ability to:

  • Process invoices in either Intacct or Bill.com: With our new, two-way sync, you can use either application to process and pay bills, and keep both applications up-to-date
  • Work with purchase orders without double data entry
  • Receive and manage customer payments, and reconcile with Intacct receivables: Create and send invoices to customers, and give them the flexibility to pay you via credit card, electronic payment (ACH), or PayPal while you enjoy low transaction costs — and for credit cards, the lowest transaction costs in the industry

This blog post highlights these new enhancements in more detail. But keep in mind the capabilities available in our original sync:

  • Pay via check or electronic payments (ACH); we’ll print and mail the checks for you, and process electronic payments
  • Pay without a personal guarantee or having a payment limit imposed
  • Access full payment audit trails, including cleared check images and any supporting documentation
  • Manage payment exceptions, including payment voids, cancels, and re-issues — without paying for additional service
  • Eliminate payment fraud


Process Invoices in Either Bill.com or Intaccct with our Two-Way Sync

Our original sync gave Intacct users the ability to pay bills seamlessly and sync payment data with their accounting systems. The sync relieved them of the manual activities inherent in printing checks themselves and/or using electronic payment services that were not well integrated with Intacct.

Our new sync builds on those capabilities. Now you can process and approve bills in Bill.com and update those changes in Intacct — and vice versa. As a result, you choose whether you want to work in Intacct or Bill.com to process invoices, route them for approval, and pay them. And regardless of your choice, your accounting system will remain the ultimate record of truth. Figures 1 and 2 show the two workflows that our new sync supports. 

Figure 1. Process and approve the bill in Intacct. Pay the bill in Bill.com


Figure 2. Process the bill in Intacct. Approve and pay the bill in Bill.com



Work with Purchase Orders without Double Data Entry

Because payment and customer data syncs between Bill.com and Intacct, you can work with a purchase order (PO) in Intacct, and then process, approve, and pay the associated bill in Bill.com. This is a marked improvement from our original sync that did not bring over POs across the two applications. With our original sync, you needed to re-enter and pay the bill in Bill.com, and then manually mark it as paid in Intacct. Our new process is seamless and eliminates duplicate data entry tasks. 


Manage Receivables

Our latest sync supports the Intacct receivables process. Now you can leverage our solution to create and send your invoices. Bill.com will mail the invoices with return envelopes or will email the invoices to your customers. You also get a customer portal that allows you to communicate and dun customers, remind them of payments, receive payments, and record payments. Your customers can pay you via ACH, credit card, or Paypal. All of the customer and payment data will be synced back to Intacct so that your accounting system will remain up-to-date.


For Additional Information

If you currently use Intacct and are not yet a Bill.com customer, chat with us, let us know you’re an Intacct user, and we’ll help get you started.

If you are an existing Bill.com Sync for Intacct user, reach out to Customer Support team starting in October by logging into Bill.com, going to the Support page, and requesting assistance. We’ll schedule time to help you migrate to our latest sync.



Monday, August 11, 2014 - 11:12

Darren Linscott, VP of Products

In the last month, there’s been a tremendous level of activity in Bill.com Insiders, a free VIP community for our customers.  Thank you.  We appreciate all the support and feedback into our product and company direction.   One of the benefits our customes enjoy from being a Bill.com Insider is a more direct way interact with Bill.com executives.  This is also a huge benefit for me, as I love hearing from customers.   I receive questions from our customers in Bill.com Insiders on a regular basis.  I will share some of the answers here on our blog.

Sarah S at MB2 Dental Solutions, recently asked me, "What new products are being developed that will help to better serve our companies?"

Here’s what I told her.

“The team at Bill.com has a number of products under development to enhance payables and receivables.  We are working on Faster Payments capabilities, including delivering checks overnight, or in 2 or 3 days.  Another option will be ACH overnight.

We are also building out the Bill.com Network capabilities.  Additional improvements to the Bill.com Network will include the ability to find and invite vendors and customers much more easily than you could before.  As you build up your network, there will be more features to help you to collaborate other businesses.  Some of the features we have planned include invoicing in the free account receivable product, which will entice more vendors to join our Network and accept electronic payments more readily. This will, in turn, help their customers that pay them to enjoy lower transactional costs with their payments. In addition, we’ll add messaging capabilities to allow an account payable customer to communicate with its vendors.

We are planning to have these will available in the next 6 to 12 months.  Be on the lookout for updates about these features as we get closer to the individual product launches.

I would love to see all of our customers in the Bill.com Insiders community and look forward to receiving more questions.

If you have questions for our executive team, please ask them in the Bill.com Insiders customer community here.


Thursday, July 31, 2014 - 11:39

Geraldine Cruz, Senior Director, Product Marketing

In mid-July, Bill.com released new network features to make it easier for businesses to connect, adopt ePayments, and eliminate manual data entry when sending and receiving financial documents

This short video explains how our Network simplifies the way businesses pay and get paid:



After our product launch, our Director of Platform Henrique Ceribelli led a webinar where he explained our network capabilities and demoed the capability. You can watch the recording of the webinar here.

Some of the top questions asked and answered during Henrique’s webinar include:

1. How do I connect with a vendor on the Bill.com Network?

There are two ways you can connect with a vendor. If your vendor is a Bill.com user and with a Bill.com Payment Network ID (PNI), you can go to the new Network tab, and in the Connections page, search for the vendor with the PNI, and follow the steps to send the invitation.

If you don’t know your vendor’s PNI or whether the business has a Bill.com account at all, you can send an invitation with only an email address. First, create a vendor account by going into the Payables tab and the Vendor page. Then, follow the directions for creating a new vendor. Once that account is created, you can go to your vendor list in the Vendor page, click on the name of the vendor, and then click “Set up ePayments”. You can then send an invitation with just your vendor’s email address.

After your vendor accepts the invitation, you and your vendor can enjoy the benefits of the Bill.com Network.

2. Will my connections get ePayments when I pay them?

If your vendor is a connection on the Bill.com Network, has a Bill.com Payment Network ID, and has entered a bank account to receive payments, then he or she will get ePayments from you — unless your connection opts to get checks instead. If you need help convincing your vendors to receive ePayments in lieu of checks, read this blog post for talking points.

3. When a vendor sends an eInvoice to me, what data is pre-filled?

Vendors with whom you are connected on the Bill.com Network can send you eInvoices. The eInvoices contain invoice data that you will no longer need to rekey into Bill.com before you begin to route the bill for approval and pay it. The information that the vendor sends and is pre-filled in the eInvoice includes the invoice, the invoice date, the due date, and the amount.

After you pay the first eInvoice from any vendor, the Bill.com Smart Data Entry service remembers the accounting expense category (such as the account, department, and location) and assigns those as default values for future eInvoices from that vendors. The default values are pre-filled in all future eInvoices. If the default information is not applicable for that eInvoice, the fields may be changed by an Administrator or anyone else assigned a role that is permitted to change bills.


Try it for Yourself

Log into your Bill.com account to try the new Network features.

If you don’t have a Bill.com account, you can sign up a for a 30-day trial. You won’t need to enter a credit card to get started.

Our training videos, accessible to everyone with a Bill.com account — including users on trial accounts, provide directions on all our solutions. For a step-by-step guide to the Network capabilities, watch the Network Training Video:




Wednesday, July 30, 2014 - 09:19

Natasha Dolginsky, Sr. Marketing Manager, Bill.com

We recently launched the Bill.com Insider hub for our customers. This VIP community is designed to make it easier for you to:

  • Network and engage with other Bill.com users
  • Provide product feedback, suggest new features, and be among the first to try them out
  • Share best practices and learn from others
  • Get a chance to gain recognition in case studies, blog posts, and webinars

We’ve had hundreds of customers join Bill.com Insiders in the last month. Here are just some of our members:


To join this exclusive community, go to the Bill.com Insiders Welcome Page.

Bill.com Insiders is designed to help you network with other Bill.com users, exchange best practices and tips, and learn more about the product. You’ll have the opportunity to complete challenges, earn points, and compete with your peers.

Here are just some examples of Bill.com Insider challenges:

  • Ask a question of a Bill.com executive
  • Be featured in a case study
  • Watch an online product demonstration of how accounting software sync works with Bill.com
  • Read a blog post on new Bill.com features
  • Join the Bill.com LinkedIn Group

If you have any questions, please contact us at insiders@hq.bill.com.

We look forward to seeing you in our community!



Tuesday, July 29, 2014 - 11:37

Tanya Roberts, Vice President, Corporate Marketing


On Wednesday, July 23rd, Bill.com hosted the monthly meeting for the National Advisor Network, California chapter.

Jami Blackburn of Bill.com and Pete Bornstein of BizPro Consulting Solutions, LLC / NAN chapter leader presented.  The meeting focused on Bill.com essentials and Bay State Consulting’s Transaction Pro Importer 5.0.

This was the first meeting we hosted at our new Bill.com office in Palo Alto at 1810 Embarcadero Road.

The National Advisor Network (NAN) group helps to advance the careers and business practices of QuickBooks ProAdvisors.  

Bill.com is thankful to work with NAN because many accountants and bookkeepers use Bill.com with QuickBooks Online or QuickBooks for Windows.  These people find that the integration between QuickBooks and Bill.com eliminates double-entry paperwork and is so easy to use together that some people don’t even have to open QuickBooks.  

More information on the San Francisco Bay Area National Advisor Network can be found at the organization's site. 

We look forward to working with more groups of accounting and bookkeeping professionals that enjoy networking face to face.   

In addition to networking events at our office and other locations, Bill.com customers can strengthen business connections with other other accounting professionals and business owners online through the Bill.com Network of 500,000 business people or the Bill.com Insiders group.

Monday, July 28, 2014 - 13:57

Geraldine Cruz, Senior Director, Product Marketing

Moving business applications to the cloud can save you significant time and expenses related to installing, maintaining, and upgrading software.  But if you need to keep their data upgraded with other applications you use without data re-entry, you’ll need a solution that integrates them.

Life would be simpler if business applications integrated the way Apple devices sync music and videos with Apple iCloud. And the good news is … with cloud applications, you may be able to get close. The integration may not be a one-click-sync, but you can find an integration that fits your workflow and isn’t daunting.

But deciphering the technical jargon and determining what makes sense for your business can be a hurdle. This blog post is targeted at beginners who want to know the fundamentals about integrations. The discussions are organized around common questions asked about integrations, syncs, and import/export: 

  • What does it really mean when an application “integrates” with other applications?
  • What’s the difference between import/export and sync?
  • What are the top things I should be aware of as I evaluate integration options?
  • How difficult is it to use import/export?
  • Is sync plug-and-play?


1. What does it mean when an application “integrates” with other applications?

When an application is said to “integrate” with other applications, that means that data may be updated across them. As a result, users get to use and work with a consistent set of data across the applications. 

The integration may be accomplished in a number of different ways, which can impact the work that the user must do to keep the data consistent. Two common methods used by cloud-based applications are import/export and sync. These two methods can also integrate cloud-based applications with non-cloud applications. Details of the methods are discussed in more detail below.

The integration may be built as a feature of the application, such as:

  • Ability to create or import comma-separated values (.csv) files
  • Syncs that Bill.com has for QuickBooks® Online, QuickBooks® Windows, Xero®, NetSuite®, and Intacct® 

Alternatively, the integration may be a solution available outside of the apps, such as application connectors from third-party integrators like itDuzzit.


2. What’s the difference between sync and import/export?

Import/export is the transfer of data between applications that is accomplished by:

  1. Creating a file (such as a .csv file) with the first application
  2. Exporting the file from the first application
  3. Importing or uploading the file into the second application

For this to work, the first application must be able to create and format a file that the second application can recognize and use.

The term “sync” can have a number of different definitions. At a very broad level, this term is the shortened form of “data synchronization” and refers to the process of keeping data across two or more applications consistent.

In the context of cloud-based applications (and this blog post), syncs are pre-built features that keep data updated simply and easily — usually with the click of one or a few buttons, like the Apple iCloud sync, or using a time-based system that updates data in  specific intervals automatically.  A sync requires no file creation, manipulation, and upload by the user. The sync feature may be available in the app, or through web-based connectors available from a third party.


3. What are the top things I should be aware of?

Keep in mind a few things as you assess integration solutions:

  • Don’t assume that when you add, delete, or change the data with one application that the updates will be made available to the other applications automatically. Instead, when and how the updates are triggered will depend on how the integrations were built and/or configured.
  • Data updates may only flow “one-way” — meaning, from one specific application to the other, but not in the reverse direction. Alternatively, the data updates may be “two-way” — meaning that data from one application will flow to the other, and vice versa. Make sure you know the direction of the data flow, and validate that it aligns with your workflow. For example, if you typically work in one application and want the data to be updated to a second application, but the integration is one-way in the opposite direction, then the solution won’t work for you. You’ll need to change your workflow or find another solution.
  • The integration may be built to share some — but not all — data fields used by the applications. Before you implement an integration solution, confirm that the data you need to update across applications is, indeed, passed back-and-forth across them. 
  • Integration does not imply a one-click sync in the style of the Apple iCloud sync. Unless you’re told that an integration happens via sync, you should assume that it happens via import/export.
  • Import/export will require a few more steps than a sync would, though the application developer may have created standard process steps to make it easier for you to do. For some systems, such as Sage® Software, Microsoft Dynamics® and other non-cloud applications, import/export is the standard way to integrate data with them; so their processes have been documented in detail. You may have the option to purchase a connector from a third-party integrator that streamlines the process even further. And if you really need an automated import/export process and there are no available connectors, you can get a developer to write an integration script for you. However, when an update for any of your applications is released, you will need to evaluate whether the script still works.
  • Integrations may result in unexpected behavior, such as:
    • The process stops abruptly when an application does not recognize an unusual character (such as “!” or “?”)
    • The application may not eliminate duplicates (ie, “de-dupe” records) that were synced, though the vendor claims it does
  • When the integration results in unexpected behavior, you’ve encountered an “edge case,” a situation that the application was not designed to address. The best syncs provide robust error-handling capabilities that can help you address those edge cases in a straight-forward, systematic manner. Ask your vendors what the edge cases are, and how the integration will behave in those cases. Try out the solution on a subset of your data (or a sandbox that does not interfere with your actual data) so you can witness the behavior yourself before you implement.


4. How difficult is it to use import/export?

Don’t sweat if your only option for integrating two applications is import/export. It may take a few extra steps than sync a would. But if an application can create the file type whose format conforms with the requirements of the second application, then your integration will work.

The first time you do an import/export, you may spend time working out kinks and resolving edge cases. But once you complete the first one, future import/exports should run more smoothly.  In fact, some import/export systems, such as the one available in Bill.com, allows you to save a template for your imports, making subsequent imports much easier and quicker.


5. Is sync plug-and-play?

Never assume any integration — including any sync — is plug-and-play. Even Apple devices must be configured or “prepared” for the very first sync. Likewise, in order to sync cloud-based applications, you will typically need to configure your applications to perform the first sync. It may not be difficult, and many companies, such as Bill.com, offer documentation and customer support services to walk you through the sync. After that first sync, all future syncs are usually quick and simple.


Key Takeaways

Using cloud applications does not eliminate the need to integrate applications. The good news is that integrations in the cloud may be simple and relatively pain-free. Arm yourself with as much information about integrations as you evaluate potential solutions. Table 1 highlights the key takeaways from the discussion above.

Table 1. Key Takeaways







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