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Proactive Accountants Network – A BetterCloud Case Study

David Politis

January 8, 2013

3 minute read

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Nearly three years ago, Proactive Accountants Network made the crucial decision to move completely to the cloud, starting with Google Apps. Now the company is 100% web and using a host of applications in the cloud, including FlashPanel, to manage their online presence. For more on how PAN uses FlashPanel to manage their Google Apps domain, check out the case study.

Employees: 20
Founded: 2005
Industry: Professional Services
FlashPanel Customer Number: 1,243

Founded in 2005, Proactive Accountants Network is responsible for positively impacting more than 850 accounting firms across Australia and New Zealand through core coaching services, training content and technology advisory.

By tailoring marketing tactics, change management and cloud services to each customer, The Network brings efficiency to their clients, ensuring long-term financial and organizational success.

Moving to the Cloud One Application at  a Time

In 2010, Proactive Accountants Networks decided to revamp their operating practices in house to provide the best possible services to employees and customers alike. The change was a full scale move to the cloud, starting with Google Apps. After running the business on Microsoft Outlook for five years, the in-house server had severely degraded and maintenance was taking the majority of the IT department’s time, leaving little room for other tasks.

Now operating fully in the cloud, PAN complements their use of Google Apps with services like, Okta, Xero, Survey Monkey, Amazon Web Services and of course, FlashPanel.

Giving the Power of the Cloud Back to Businesses

As a small business, Proactive Accountants Network needed a tool that would allow them to quickly and easily manage their Google Apps domain without taking valuable time away from other projects. According to Giordana Rock, PAN’s Innovation Team Leader, FlashPanel is just the tool they needed and now the company even recommends FlashPanel to customers operating on Google Apps.

Rock adds that even the most basic FlashPanel features, like creating and updating users and managing Google Groups, are essential to her day to day admin needs. In addition to daily tasks, Rock makes use of the following features to keep her Google Apps domain running smoothly.

User Deprovisioning Workflow

When a team member leaves Proactive Accountants Network, Rock makes use of FlashPanel’s user deprovisioning workflow. “The wizard is very easy to go through and makes the entire process simpler,” noted Ms. Rock, claiming that the custom checklist included in the workflow has been particularly useful. Rock and her team use the checklist to ensure items like laptops, cell phones, tablet devices and office keys are returned before an employee departs. Giordana also says the ability to first suspend a user and then schedule the account deletion gives other employees time to comb through transferred documents and any important client-related emails.

Email Signatures

According to Ms. Rock, FlashPanel’s email signature tool is “like a godsend.” A previous company of her’s instituted a 32-step email signature creation process including everything from inserting a picture to adding the correct hyperlinks.

Now with FlashPanel, Rock is able to easily create, manage and schedule email signatures. So far, she’s created six different templates for each department as well as the company’s CEO and Director, and even pushes out new signatures for special company promotions and holidays.

Ask the Gooru

Proactive Accountants Network also finds FlashPanel’s built-in training program, Ask the Gooru, extremely valuable. In fact, through the Gooru’s extensive training videos, Proactive’s in house accountants, once beholden to Microsoft Excel, have gladly adapted Google Sheets, with many exclaiming, “we can do that all online?!”

Giordana has also installed the Ask the Gooru Chrome extension for easy access to videos when she’s not in FlashPanel and frequently shares Gooru content with her colleagues.

Ms. Rock says that, “FlashPanel is truly putting the power of the cloud back into the hands of the business owner” and finds that the tool simplifies a very complicated process.