Mike Block CPA and Advanced Certified QuickBooks ProAdvisor

Filed in Intuit QuickBooks by on December 16, 2011

I am an Advanced Certified QuickBooks ProAdvisor, again. I have been an Advanced Certified QuickBooks ProAdvisor, Certified QuickBooks ProAdvisor and QuickBooks ProAdvisor since these programs began, so I rarely bother announcing each new annual qualification. I also was on the first Intuit Certified QuickBooks ProAdvisor Advisory Council, in 2002 and 2003, when we first dropped uncertified QuickBooks ProAdvisors from the Intuit “Find an Accountant” referral database.

Few know that I was personally responsible for the current difficult Advanced Certified QuickBooks ProAdvisor and Certified QuickBooks ProAdvisor exams. It is these exams that make sure that Advanced Certified QuickBooks ProAdvisors and Certified QuickBooks ProAdvisors are worthy of their titles and their generally slightly higher billing rates. These rates only averaged $2 to $8 per hour more in Intuit surveys.

For a while, however, the Certified QuickBooks ProAdvisor (search engine repetition – sorry) exams kept asking the same multiple-choice questions each time you took them. They also only changed slightly each year. This made the Advanced Certified QuickBooks ProAdvisor and Certified QuickBooks ProAdvisor exams a farce. I kept protesting this with Our QuickBooks Friends at Intuit, especially my good friend and now CEO Brad Smith. Brad began our relationship with the flowery letter linked above. It includes:

You have been quite open to taking the time to assist Intuit,
are a tremendous voice of reason and are one of our
most impactful and innovative Professional Advisors.

Only later did Brad tell me that former Intuit CEO Steve Bennet TOLD him to contact me even before he arrived at Intuit. Steve had already written this to me:

Keep raising hell when Intuit does something wrong!

My initial long conversation with Brad soon led the creation of the Accountant Inner Circle website. It also led to countless later emails and the current TurboTax and QuickBooks tech-support backed user-to user forums, linked to the programs. This innovation let Intuit deliver better tech support answers in less time, while cutting or reassigning one-seventh of its employees. Brad later wrote:

You’re fantastic Mike. Absolutely fantastic!

This meant that my complaints about the Certified QuickBooks ProAdvisor exam farce got a receptive audience. One year I proved the Certified QuickBooks ProAdvisor exam farce by getting 100% on the exam, WITHOUT READING THE QUESTIONS. I simply answered every question A. I then answered all questions B and repeated this with C. Each time I did this, I learned which questions were right. That led to my getting 100% on the fourth try, in less than 30 minutes, not the expected 8 to 16 hours. I told Brad I felt morally obligated to bring the QuickBooks ProAdvisor exam farce public, as I was then the most prolific poster of QuickBooks related answers (more than 7,000 in my first few years). I also said I would bring this to the attention of NASBA (National Association of State Boards of Accountancy). Brad set up a conference call with a NASBA representative, two people from the testing company and two others from Intuit. The NASBA rep quickly agreed with me.

Now every Advanced Certified QuickBooks ProAdvisor, Certified QuickBooks ProAdvisor and QuickBooks user can thank me and curse me every year. The legitimately difficult Advanced Certified QuickBooks ProAdvisor and Certified QuickBooks ProAdvisor exams are the only way to get meaningful quality standards for QuickBooks users. Yes, Certified QuickBooks Advisors tend to charge SLIGHTLY more than the three times as many who claim the illegitimate QuickBooks ProAdvisor title, simply because they bought it from Intuit. However, these uncertified QuickBooks ProAdvisors average about $30 an hour more than equally untested bookkeepers do. Intuit also told my ProAdvisor Advisory Council that virtually all QuickBooks ProAdvisor complaints involved uncertified QuickBooks ProAdvisors.

It is unfortunate that any child or moron can buy the QuickBooks ProAdvisor title, since some do. QuickBooks users can only know the quality of the QuickBooks help they are getting by looking for the Advanced Certified QuickBooks ProAdvisor or Certified QuickBooks ProAdvisor titles.

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Fastest, easiest, accurate, low-cost QuickBooks! Intuit - QuickBooks CEO, "You're fantastic Mike! Absolutely fantastic!" Tax fighting CPA.

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