Managing Your Tax Season

  • $79.00-$99.00
    Managing Your Tax Season, Third Edition Availability : In Stock Product #: PTX1402P
    AICPA Member: $79.00
    Non-Member: $99.00
  • $69.00-$89.00
    Managing Your Tax Season, Third Edition Availability : eBook Download Product #: PTX1402E
    AICPA Member: $69.00
    Non-Member: $89.00

Is tax season at your firm a head-long scramble to the finish line? Do you want to start your next tax season with a system that reflects thoughtful planning and training?

Get fresh insight into tax preparation—and very likely result in significant improvements to your current system. You will learn to analyze your existing tax season system and target problems so that work will be more efficient, errors will decrease, and personnel, including you, will feel less stressed. Most importantly, a well-run tax season will make your clients happier and more loyal.

Every firm has a tax season system, whether documented or not. Tax season management expert Edward Mendlowitz shares specific ideas for improving each aspect of your system, including how to

  • Staff creatively with seasonal staff, interns, and by outsourcing
  • Maximize the effectivness of the tax organizers you send to clients
  • Communicate effectively with clients about the value of your service
  • Use pre-year-end planning to develop tax and financial planning opportunities
  • Empower your preparers to do more return work
  • Make reviews run smoothly
  • Conduct a post-tax season assessment of your process
  • Bill for the real value of your return preparation—and even increase your fees

Numerous sample checklists, letters, charts, and Excel tax comparison worksheets will help you implement this guidance in your next tax season. Having a world-class tax department is possible for every firm, and this resource will help you make that goal a reality.

Topics Discussed:

  • Improving tax season system
  • Tax return preparation processes
  • Managing seasonality issues
  • Staffing solutions
  • Getting the most out of technology
  • Year-end planning for tax clients
  • Staff tax training program
  • Assignment scheduling
  • Client appointments
  • Preparation and review
  • Billing
  • Determining fees
  • E-filing
  • Extensions
  • Tax audits
  • Client satisfaction, retention and referrals


Tax Section and PCPS Members Receive Additional Savings!

Tax Section Members - when you log into this website with your AICPA member user account, the Tax Section discount will be automatically applied during checkout.

PCPS Members – click here and login with your AICPA member user account to obtain the discount code to enter during checkout.

Should you have any questions or encounter any issues, please contact the AICPA Service Center at 888-777-7077 or service@aicpa.org.

Find out more information on the Tax Section and PCPS.

Table of Contents


The Pre-Tax-Season Meeting

For tax season, the kickoff is our annual pre-tax-season meeting, held from 5:00 P.M. to 9:30 P.M. over a buffet dinner during the first week of February. We have a 200-plus page manual that contains the procedures we want followed during tax season, a section on tax changes that we want to highlight, copies of our internal forms, and an organizer and tax information for a sample client whose return will be prepared that evening.

The staff meeting consists of three separate parts:

  • Part 1 is a discussion of tax law changes and highlights and our procedures and processes. This lasts approximately 100 minutes.
  • Part 2 is the preparation of a sample tax return on IRS forms. This lasts approximately 100 minutes.
  • Part 3 is a discussion and critique of the return. This lasts approxi­mately 50 minutes.

We allow 20 minutes for eating, even though we work through din­ner. We give five continuing professional education credits.

Part of our training that has been successful for us is for the staff to prepare a sample return on government forms, followed by a discus­sion of the results. We have enhanced this program by customizing the preparation to the preparer’s level. Proctors walk around supervising the preparation, and each person fills in the parts of the return geared toward his or her level, with everyone actually calculating the taxable income and the income tax. Filled-in forms for the parts that individuals did not manually prepare are handed out during the appropriate time in the preparation session.

We usually invite colleagues from other firms to join us. Doing so allows us to share information with them, as well as gain different per­spectives, so we can all learn and grow. This part of the meeting has been very successful for everyone attending.

The objectives of our meeting are as follows:

  • Create respect for tax season.
  • Create morale and spirit.
  • Strengthen our firm culture (“We are different, and we are better, and we work together.”) and brand (what we stand for and the quality behind everything we do).
  • Prepare a return on actual forms, so there will be a “feel” for returns.
  • Ensure the highest quality of preparation at each level handling the return, starting with the lowest level.

About the Authors

Edward Mendlowitz, CPA/PFS/ABV/CFF/CITP, CGMA

About the Publisher

American Institute of CPAs

The American Institute of CPAs (AICPA) is the world’s largest member association representing the CPA profession, with more than 418,000 members in 143 countries, and a history of serving the public interest since 1887. AICPA members represent many areas of practice, including business and industry, public practice, government, education and consulting.

The AICPA sets ethical standards for the profession and U.S. auditing standards for private companies, nonprofit organizations, federal, state and local governments. It develops and grades the Uniform CPA Examination, and offers specialized credentials for qualified professionals who concentrate on personal financial planning; forensic accounting; business valuation; and information management and technology assurance. With The Chartered Institute of Management Accountants (CIMA), it offers the Chartered Global Management Accountant (CGMA) designation, which sets the global benchmark for quality and recognition in management accounting.

The AICPA and CIMA also make up the Association of International Certified Professional Accountants (the Association), which represents public and management accounting globally, advocating on behalf the public interest and advancing the quality, competency and employability of CPAs, CGMAs and other accounting and finance professionals worldwide.

The AICPA maintains offices in New York, Washington, DC, Durham, NC, and Ewing, NJ.