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What the ERC Pause Means for Small Business Owners

When properly claimed, the Employee Retention Credit (ERC) is a refundable tax credit designed for businesses and tax-exempt organizations that continued to pay their employees while experiencing workforce disruptions due to the COVID-19 pandemic. Unfortunately, the intricate filing process associated with this credit inadvertently created an opportunity for corrupt specialty firms to prey on small business owners, making deceptive claims about eligibility. 

With the rise in fraudulent ERC claims, the IRS announced an immediate halt to processing new claims through at least the end of the year. IRS Commissioner Danny Werfel states, “The IRS is increasingly alarmed about honest small business owners being scammed by unscrupulous actors, and we could no longer tolerate growing evidence of questionable claims pouring in.”

Depending on your filing situation, we’re going to cover what to expect and what you should do next as a small business owner. 

What if I have already filed an ERC claim?

If you have already filed an ERC claim, the IRS will continue to process your claim, but at a greatly reduced speed. The IRS will be reviewing more than 600,000 claims, so expect processing times to be 180 days (about 6 months) or longer. The IRS may even ask for more information, so be prepared to receive this request. 

If you believe that your claim is fraudulent, the IRS is working on offering a withdrawal option for those who have filed an ERC claim but have not yet had it processed. As cited by the IRS, “This option, which can be used by taxpayers whose claim hasn’t yet been paid, will allow the taxpayers, many of them small businesses who were misled by promoters, to avoid possible repayment issues and paying promoters contingency fees.” However, if you have willfully filed a fraudulent claim, withdrawing it does not exempt you from potential criminal investigation. 

In the event that your ERC claim has already been processed and you have received an improper ERC payment, you are required to pay it back with possible penalties and interest. Per the IRS, they are “developing new initiatives to help businesses who found themselves victims of aggressive promoters. This includes a settlement program for repayments for those who received an improper ERC payment.” Remember, this program is not finalized, but the IRS plans to release more information in the fall. 

What if I am in the process of filing for the ERC?

The IRS encourages anyone being pressured by promoters to apply for the ERC “to immediately pause and review their situation while we (the IRS) look to add new protections and safeguards to stop bad claims from ever coming in.” Commissioner Werfel also states, “Businesses should seek out a trusted tax professional who actually understands the complex ERC rules.”

This would also be a good time to review the IRS list of red flags when it comes to aggressive ERC promoters as well as the IRS ERC eligibility checklist. 

What are my next steps?

Considering the complexity of the ERC, it’s never been more important to partner with a trusted tax professional. As small business owners ourselves, we know how scary this situation can be, but you don’t have to face it alone. At Padgett, we prioritize our relationships with our clients and are here to help you every step of the way. With over 50 years of collective experience and expertise in filing ERC claims, we’re prepared to answer any questions you may have regarding your ERC filing status. Connect with us today for reliable guidance and advice. 

Padgett announces partnership with payroll provider ADP

Athens, GA — Padgett, an accounting and tax planning and preparation franchise with hundreds of locations across the U.S., announced their revised partnership with ADP, a national payroll and human resources management software company.

“Our new partnership with ADP brings a lot of benefit to our franchisees, and through them, to our small business clients,” Padgett’s Chief Operating Officer Amanda Aguillard said. “Our hope is that this partnership will allow our franchisees to more easily provide expanded payroll services to their clients and better meet their needs.”

Established in 1949, ADP has spent over 70 years establishing themselves as the leading provider of human capital management (HCM) solutions, including payroll, human resources, time, talent, tax and benefits administration. Their cloud-based software, next day direct deposit and decades of payroll management experience makes the platform a trusted source for businesses worldwide.

“ADP pays, on average, one in every six Americans,” Greg Grant, Strategic Alliance Executive for ADP’s small business services division, said. “There are millions of people who rely on us for managing their payroll, and there’s a reason for that. We understand that many small businesses don’t have the resources to handle a lot of payroll and HR tasks alone. We keep the focus on the people and allow them to maximize their time so they can do more with less.”

The new partnership with ADP is Padgett’s latest step towards building an industry-leading approach to technology for their network of individually-owned firms across North America. Following their partnership with CPA Site Solutions to launch new websites for every location, their attention has turned to strengthening their technology offerings for back-end operations.

“We’ve been working hard on building a really solid tech stack for our franchisees, with tested and proven software that provides a lot of value,” Aguillard said. “ADP is a key foundational piece of our ecosystem.”

About Padgett

Through a network of hundreds of individually owned firms, Padgett provides tax, accounting, payroll and consulting services to tens of thousands of small businesses across the U.S. and Canada. With an entrepreneurial spirit and more than 50 years of experience, Padgett aims to serve as trusted advisors and empower business owners to pursue their financial and personal goals. Learn more

About ADP

Designing better ways to work through cutting-edge products, premium services and exceptional experiences that enable people to reach their full potential. HR, Talent, Time Management, Benefits and Payroll. Informed by data and designed for people. Learn more

What does the Inflation Reduction Act mean for your business?

Even before the Senate voted to pass the Inflation Reduction Act (IRA) on August 7, rumors were flying online about what the bill included and what effect it would have on Americans, especially those with businesses or side jobs.

Though the bill includes provisions to reduce the deficit, institute price limits on prescription medications and decrease carbon emissions, much of the conversation has centered around the included plans to provide the IRS with approximately $80 billion, which could provide the funding to hire as many as 87,000 new employees.

Many Americans, for whom the IRS is a distant concern that conjures up ideas of audits and owed taxes, are understandably concerned about these numbers. But what do they really mean? Are these provisions for the IRS accurate? Why is the IRS being given so much money? Will there be more audits? How will this realistically affect the average American?

Padgett president Roger Harris, a vocal small business advocate and former member of the IRS Advisory Council, helps answer these questions and break down the common concerns about the Inflation Reduction Act.

Does the bill actually include provisions for 87,000 new employees?

According to Harris, maybe, but “there are not going to be 87,000 new auditors on the street tomorrow,” he says.

The 87,000 number is an estimate based on the overall budget. The provided $80 billion could potentially hire that many new employees, but there are several other factors at play in the allotment of the funding.

First, the funds are allotted into four categories: $45.6 billion for enforcement, $25.3 billion for operations, $3.2 billion for taxpayer services, and $4.8 billion for business system modernization. While this would include funding to hire new employees, some of whom may be auditors, it will also need to be spent on buildings and technology. Even if 87,000 new employees were hired, those employees would each need a place to work, with space in an office, a desk and a computer.

Additionally, these funds are intended to be spent across a 10-year span, through September 31, 2031. These new job openings will not be available right away. Even if they were, it’s unrealistic that the IRS would be able to hire so many employees so quickly.

Many businesses are already facing a tough hiring market. For the IRS, who struggles to remain competitive with the private sector, the hiring market is even tougher. It can already be difficult to fill current open positions to replace existing employees who have retired or resigned.

IRS employees also generally undergo extensive training after being hired—in some cases, up to three years before they’re considered fully trained. Without a strong training program in place, existing employees often train these new hires, which in turn, pulls more staff away from their actual job duties. “For example, if you hire ten new auditors, you’d have to take two more out of the field to train them,” Harris said, to illustrate the effect. “So really, you have a net new hire of eight until training is complete.”

Why is the IRS receiving all of this money?

Almost every accounting organization has endorsed more funding for the IRS. In recent years, the IRS has seen a dramatic increase in workload, yet a dramatic decrease in the workforce. You have likely experienced the downsides of an under-funded IRS.

“The IRS collects the money that runs our government,” Harris said. “If you just consider COVID-19, there were stimulus checks, the Employee Retention Credit and the Advance Child Tax Credit, all now being run through the tax system. You’ve also got the Earned Income Tax Credit and the Affordable Care Act run through the IRS.”

With the IRS handling so many crucial tasks for taxpayers, it’s important for paperwork to be handled properly and issues resolved quickly. But with its lack of funding, the IRS has been struggling to keep up. As of August, millions of 2021 tax returns are still unprocessed, leaving many people still waiting for a refund. Inaccurate notices have been sent out to taxpayers. Calling the IRS to resolve an issue like these could take hours—or more.

With additional funding, some of the new employees the IRS could hire will help to answer the phones, process returns, and identify errors. The IRS can also improve their technological tools to speed up processing and make issue resolution easier for taxpayers.

“It’s frustrating for a taxpayer to get a notice that says to call the IRS, and then spend hours on hold or end up speaking to someone who can’t even help,” Harris said. “We should all support fixing that.”

Will there be more audits?

“Everybody, take a deep breath,” Harris says. There may be more audits, but this is not necessarily a bad thing: “The problem is not audits themselves, but when we audit the wrong people. This problem is made worse if the IRS agents are inexperienced or not properly trained.”

Part of the concern around increased audits comes from a confusion about what an audit really is. A notice in the mail asking questions about your tax return, while concerning and requiring action, is not necessarily an audit. An audit is a thorough examination of an organization’s finances and generally involves an on-site inspection or verification process with an IRS agent and sometimes lawyers or accountants. This process can be time-consuming and expensive, doesn’t occur as often as many think, and should only be done when absolutely necessary.

In a voluntary tax system such as the U.S., audits are a necessary element. They are needed to catch criminals and to encourage compliance among other taxpayers. However, he urges the IRS to improve its selection process and ensure the auditors are well-trained so that honest taxpayers are not being unfairly audited.

“We need to enforce tax laws, just like we need state patrol on the highway to keep people from speeding,” he said. “They only need to pull enough people over so that the people behind them remember to slow down. What we shouldn’t accept is auditing of honest taxpayers. If I’m a small business owner, don’t waste my time with a four- or five-day audit. It’s expensive, and it’s no good for anybody. It does no good for the IRS to spend their money on audits that produce no revenue.”

What immediate effect will this have on the average American?

Initially, according to Harris, the effect is “little to none.” Time must be spent hiring and training employees, adopting new technologies and improving infrastructure. None of this is a rapid process, so taxpayers likely won’t see the effects for a year or more.

But importantly, the Inflation Reduction Act shows that responsibility has now shifted. Congress is willing to supply the IRS with funding to improve their functioning, so now it is time for the IRS to step up and take action.

“On the surface, the bill is tilted toward enforcement,” Harris says. “And I’m not qualified to speak on why the money was divided this way, but I understand that different problems require different solutions. For example, a person answering the phone can potentially help many taxpayers in a day, yet a person performing an audit deals with one taxpayer at a time. The dollar amount in a budget is not necessarily equivalent to the importance of the activity.”

“What’s the right amount of enforcement to get the level of compliance our tax system needs? That’s what we should be striving for,” he continues. “The IRS clearly needs better taxpayer service, better technology, and just enough enforcement to ensure the integrity of the tax system.”

In his own letter to the IRS, Harris encourages them to spend the time ensuring the money is spent appropriately, and to focus first on rebuilding taxpayer support before increasing enforcement activity. Only then, he suggests, can we expect people to accept the necessity of enforcement.

“Every taxpayer that files their tax return in April and pays the tax they owe expects other taxpayers to do the same. If that basic belief goes away our entire tax system could suffer. We believe that enforcement to reinforce the concept of fairness for each taxpayer should not be controversial.”


Meet Roger Harris, Padgett President

Roger Harris is the president of Padgett and has been serving in this role since 1992. He has worked with the company for 50 years, since studying at the J.M. Tull School of Accounting at the University of Georgia. Prior to becoming president of the company, Roger served as President and Chairman of the Board for 10 years in one of the largest Padgett franchises in the system, giving him years of valuable expertise in the franchise industry. He has used his expertise as an industry expert in the Wall Street Journal, USA Today, The Morning Business Report, Bloomberg Business News and Accounting Today. Roger has also offered testimony before Congress, putting his decades of experience to work as an advocate for small business legislation.

How to be a visionary: Interview with Atlanta Braves CEO

Recently, Padgett CEO Jeff Phillips and President Roger Harris had the opportunity to visit Truist Park to sit down and chat with Atlanta Braves president and CEO Derek Schiller. We’re so excited for this chance to discuss sports and business with the leader of the oldest continuously operating professional sports franchise in America. 

“When you think about the Braves, obviously you think about a baseball team, and people don’t really look at it this way, but we’re really a live event business,” Schiller said when asked about seeing the big picture and serving as a visionary for the organization. “My goal when I think about my day is to try to cede the operational business and the operational skill sets to somebody with that expertise, so that I can focus on strategy.” 

“This entire business of professional sports has really revolutionized over the past 10 to 20 years,” he added. “Now, we’re very deliberate and intentional about finding the skillsets that can help drive our business and set the course for strategic growth.” 

In honor of legendary Braves player and entrepreneur Hank Aaron, Padgett also made a donation to the Henry Louis Aaron fund. “As great a baseball player as he was, he’s a better person,” Harris said. “[The fund] speaks to him as a person and a ball player, but also speaks to the kind of customers we’ve had for our company.” 


If you would like to learn more about the Henry Louis Aaron fund or make a contribution, please visit 

COVID Tax Credits Create Lifeline For Many Businesses

The pandemic has pushed many businesses to the brink, putting enormous pressure on owners like you who worry about everything from the health and security of your employees to the ability to simply keep your doors open in the face of rising community case counts.  

Fortunately, you might be eligible for tax credits and other benefits that could allow your employees to get vaccinated or recover from a COVID-19 illness safely, easing your stress over your bottom line and preventing your workers from fearing for a lost paycheck.  

Here’s a brief overview of some programs you could take advantage of as we keep moving forward. 

Determining who is eligible 

If you run a business with fewer than 500 employees, then you’re likely eligible for tax credits that can offset wages paid for leave taken by employees who aren’t able to work due to illness from COVID-19. These tax credits also allow your employees to get vaccinated and recover from any side effects. 

These tax credits are available for wages paid for leave from April 1, 2021, through September 30, 2021. 

Support for your payroll 

The refundable credits are equal to the sick leave wages paid for up to two weeks (80 hours) at 100 percent of the employee’s regular rate of pay, capped at $511 per day. The tax credit for paid family leave wages is equal to the family leave wages paid for up to 12 weeks, limited to $200 per day, at two-thirds of the employee’s regular rate of pay. 

The paid leave credits under the American Rescue Plan Act are tax credits against the employer’s share of the Medicare tax. The value of the tax credits can increase based on a variety of factors, including approved health plan expenses, contributions for certain collectively bargained benefits, and the employer’s share of Social Security and Medicare taxes. 

Impact on your employees’ benefits 

Communicating with your employees about how testing and treatment impacts their existing health benefits is important. If you offer high-deductible health plans, they’re able to cover these costs without jeopardizing their status. For instance, if one of your employees has a high-deductible plan that covers these expenses, they’re still able to contribute toward a health savings account and won’t lose status because these costs are covered before their deductibles have been met. 

Connect with Padgett today 

Since the beginning of the pandemic, our network of CPAs, enrolled agents and tax professionals have been working closely with small businesses across the country to help guide them through the various hurdles of compliance and navigate an uncertain environment. At PADGETT BUSINESS SERVICES®, we’re here to help you navigate what feels like an ever-changing landscape, so be sure to find an office near you and see how we can lend a hand! 

How Pandemic Provisions Have Impacted Estimated Tax Payments

Third quarter estimated tax payments are due on Sept. 15, and whether you’re self-employed or a business owner with income from a Partnership or S-Corporation, you might be wondering if any of the pandemic relief programs will impact what you owe.  

As you probably know, estimated taxes are a way to pay tax on income that isn’t subject to withholding. Income from self-employment, interest, dividends, alimony, rent, and gains from the sales of assets, prizes, or awards, all could require you to pay estimated tax.  

And it’s not only used for regular income tax, but also for other taxes like self-employment tax and alternative minimum tax. Remember that estimated tax payments are paid in four installments and are due April 15, June 15, Sept. 15, and Jan. 15. However, if you’ve been impacted by Hurricanes Henri or Ida, the severe storms and flooding in Tennessee, or another presidentially declared disaster, an extension on third quarter estimates for 2021 has been granted until Jan. 3, 2022. 

With the Sept. 15th deadline right around the corner, it’s important to make sure you’ve got everything in line for your next payment. However, estimating income for 2021 can be trickier than previous years because of recent relief programs, like the Paycheck Protection Program or Employee Retention Credit. Whether you’re running a business or managing your personal taxes, here are three things to keep in mind when determining how much you’ve got to pay in estimated tax in the last two quarters of 2021.   

  1. Impact of the Employee Retention Credit: Business who received an Employee Retention Credit may have to deal with an unanticipated tax situation because the amount of the credit received reduces the wage expense deduction for that tax year. That, in turn, increases income which might mean you owe more in taxes. 
  2. Impact of Advance Child Tax Credit Payments: If you received advance Child Tax Credit payments for the last half of the year, you could owe back some or all of it on your 2021 tax return. Why? The 2021 payments are essentially estimates based on your 2019 and 2020 returns, so unexpected changes to your 2021 return (an increase in income, or a child no longer qualifying as a dependent, for example) may put you out of the running for the credit. 
  3. Impact of 2021 PPP loan forgiveness on state and local taxes: If you had your Paycheck Protection Program loan forgiven, those funds aren’t taxed by the federal government. However, different states have different rules, as some are treating the forgiven loan as taxable income and denying the deduction for expenses paid for using forgiven loans. So, state-level estimated tax payments might be in order. 

Given all the changes thrown at you the past few months, it’s important to have a trusted accounting and tax partner to guide you through the obstacles and hurdles of compliance. At PADGETT BUSINESS SERVICES®, our network of CPAs, enrolled agents and tax professionals is well-versed in dealing with these programs and policies. Find an office near you today! 

Finding the Way to Forgiveness: How to Close Out Your PPP Loan

The Paycheck Protection Program (PPP) proved to be a vital lifeline for small businesses dealing with the perils of the pandemic. Initially launched in the early days of the pandemic, it has provided needed funds to help support payroll and other business functions. 

Businesses may be eligible to have their loan forgiven, and the time to apply for that is upon us. If you received a PPP loan, you probably have some questions around how to best manage the loan forgiveness process. As with any large government program, there can be a lot of red tape to cut through, which isn’t necessarily the best use of your time as you help lead your business back from the challenges of the past year. 

To give you a better understanding of what the loan forgiveness process looks like, here’s a quick primer. 

​Determining who is eligible for loan forgiveness 

PPP loans were awarded in Spring 2020 (First Draw) and again in Spring 2021 (Second Draw). Regardless of when you received the funding, you’ll need to apply to have the loan forgiven. For full loan forgiveness, you must meet the following criteria: 

  • You were able to maintain your pre-pandemic employment and compensation levels. 
  • You spent at least 60 percent of your loan on payroll costs.  
  • You spent the remaining 40 percent or less on other eligible business expenses, such as rent, mortgage, or utilities. 

Once all loan proceeds for which you are requesting forgiveness have been used, you can apply for forgiveness any time up to the maturity date of the loan. After 10 months from the last day of the loan period, the PPP loan payments are no longer deferred, and you’ll be on the hook for paying back the loan. Therefore, it’s important to work with your accountant or financial partner to ensure you’re adhering to any deadlines. 

What’s needed for forgiveness 

Depending on the amount of the loan and the forgiveness forms you’re required to submit (there are three), supporting documentation may be needed. As such, here are some examples of documentation to keep on hand to help verify how your loan was used: 

  • Bank account statements 
  • Third-party payroll service reports 
  • Payroll tax filings 
  • State quarterly business reports 
  • Payment receipts 

If you used a portion of your loan for non-payroll items like rent, mortgage, electricity, gas, water, transportation, telephone, or internet access be sure to have supporting records just in case. Keep in mind that when calculating your eligible payroll costs, you can’t include qualified wages paid from April 1, 2020 through December 31, 2021 that are being used to claim the Employee Retention Credit. 

A new, easy option for small businesses 

Most loans in the second round of funding went to small businesses like yours, with most of them being $150,000 or less in size. To streamline the process, saving potential hassle and headaches of navigating forgiveness, the Small Business Administration has launched an online portal for those with smaller loans.  

The portal went live on August 4, and it features more than 600 banks that have already opted in, serving more than two million borrowers. More lenders are opting in each day, making this a viable, efficient option for those with loans less than $150,000. 

Serving our clients in tough times 

COVID-19 brought in a wave of challenges for small businesses, and PADGETT BUSINESS SERVICES® quickly moved to provide the support, service and care needed for our clients. Our offices helped clients secure more than $94 million in pandemic relief funding, ensuring they could keep their doors open, their staff employed, and their customers served. If your small business needs help with the loan forgiveness process or is interested in finding a new partner to stand with you when the going gets tough, reach out to a Padgett office today. 

Restaurant Owners! Don’t Overlook This Big Tax Break

If you’re a restaurant or food-service business owner who sought out financial assistance in 2020 because of the pandemic, you may have overlooked the Employee Retention Credit as a cash infusion source for your business. The good news is this tax break is still available through the end of 2021. 

Here’s what you need to know how the credit works for your business. 


The Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security Act, also known as the CARES Act, was signed into law in March 2020. One of the provisions in the CARES Act was the Employee Retention Credit (ERC). The ERC is a refundable payroll tax credit that businesses can claim on qualified wages, including certain health insurance costs, which you pay to your employees. 

In 2020, restaurant and food service business owners could get a maximum credit of $5,000 per employee. In 2021, the maximum credit per employee is now $28,000. 

Does your restaurant or food service business qualify for the ERC? 

You’re eligible for the ERC if your restaurant experienced either of the following: 

  • A full or partial suspension of operations because of governmental orders that limit commerce, travel or group meetings due to COVID-19, or 
  • A decline in gross receipts in any calendar quarter where the gross receipts of that calendar quarter are less than 80% (50% in 2020) of the gross receipts in the same calendar quarter in 2019. 

Can I get the ERC if I also received a PPP loan? 

The CARES Act originally didn’t allow an employer that received a Paycheck Protection Program (PPP) loan to also claim the ERC. The American Rescue Plan Act, enacted in March 2021, overturned this section of the CARES Act. 

Retroactive to the March 27, 2020 enactment of the CARES Act, the law now allows restaurants and food service businesses who received PPP loans to claim the ERC for qualified wages that aren’t treated as payroll costs in obtaining forgiveness of the PPP loan. 

How do I claim the ERC? 

To claim the ERC, fill out your Form 941, quarterly payroll tax return. The amount of the ERC that your restaurant can claim will be reconciled on each of your quarterly 941 forms. 

In addition to claiming the ERC for all four quarters in 2021, you can also retroactively claim the ERC by filing Form 941-X for any quarters in 2020 for which your restaurant qualifies. 

Don’t wait! Contact your Padgett advisor today. 

With most of the press focusing on the PPP loan program over the past year, it was easy to overlook other financial assistance programs and tax breaks. Contact your PADGETT BUSINESS SERVICES® advisor today to see if your restaurant qualifies for the Employee Retention Credit and how to start claiming your tax credit. 

What’s Next In The Recovery? Navigating Our New Normal

Padgett franchisees share their thoughts on the post-pandemic world 

The COVID-19 pandemic turned our world upside down, and questions about what comes next are everywhere: What changes are here to stay? Is inflation on the way? Will the tight labor market start to ease up? 

We surveyed 50 PADGETT BUSINESS SERVICES® local franchise owners to better understand what their small business clients are telling them about life after COVID-19. As we all come out of the pandemic, here are several observations our local franchise owners shared with us about what they believe may come next: 

  • Nearly three-quarters of respondents said the pandemic accelerated the adoption of mobile technologies among clients who initially would be hesitant to do so.  
  • 64 percent said videoconferencing will be a permanent fixture in the office environment moving forward 
  • 44 percent indicated their restaurant and retail clients will continue to utilize mobile ordering 
  • 56 percent said they felt their clients would return to the office full-time, while another 32 percent plan to incorporate a hybrid model that meshes time in the office with remote work 
  • 46 percent said they expected clients to encourage their employees get vaccinated against COVID-19, though only 6 percent indicated clients would make it a requirement 

The pandemic ushered in a period of rapid change, and it’s been a dizzying environment for small businesses to navigate. Challenges and opportunities abound, and the lessons learned can chart a path forward. 

Hiring poses a challenge 

Feedback from our respondents made it clear that hiring is a significant challenge for small businesses across the country. Padgett clients aren’t immune to this tough labor market, citing robust federal unemployment benefits and recent economic stimulus efforts as deterrents in finding and retaining employees.  

“Hiring employees is, by far, the greatest challenge,” said one local franchise owner. “For many, accepting that it’s going to take higher wages to get people back will be a challenge.” 

Of course, boosting wages isn’t an easy decision to make when concerns over inflation and disruptions in the supply chain are putting additional financial pressures on small business owners. As such, many are reassigning and consolidating job duties among existing employees and adjusting the hours when they are open for service. 

Because of these challenges, respondents indicated that clients are having a difficult time forecasting their revenue for the remainder of the year, which impacts their plans to make long-term hires and needed investments. While federal support through initiatives like the Paycheck Protection Program and Employee Retention Credit helped businesses get through the uncertainty of the pandemic, there are concerns about being able to effectively manage these ongoing challenges in the next few months. 

Plotting the future of work 

While most survey participants believe things like videoconferencing and mobile ordering will be established pieces of the new normal, there’s a concern about how these technologies will alter the power of personal touch.  

With the pandemic pushing in-person meetings to platforms like Zoom and curbside pick-up and deliveries replacing in-store visits, Padgett clients are seeking ways to remain engaged with their customers. 

Local franchise owners also noted the financial implications of remote work. One said several clients had ended their office leases during the pandemic, and three of them now regularly travel while working. Such mobility has raised obvious concerns with tax liability, the necessity of a home office and associated tax planning issues. 

Adaptability is crucial for success 

The rapid shutdown of the economy at the beginning of the pandemic caused a tremendous amount of turmoil, but local franchise owners pointed to how quickly they and their clients pivoted to address these changes. 

“They have learned that they could make changes and survive,” one respondent said. “All I have spoken with have said they know they would never have survived without the COVID relief programs, but now they are looking forward. Everything is not back 100 percent yet, but they have learned resiliency and how to adapt to changes.” 

They also said the experiences of the past year will prepare them for any future challenges. 

A commitment to serving our clients 

When COVID-19 first hit, Padgett quickly adapted to find new ways to continue to take care of clients struggling with the uncertainty of the pandemic, including embracing videoconferencing and remote work technologies to stay engaged and supportive. We helped clients secure more than $94 million in pandemic relief funding, ensuring they could keep their doors open, their staffs employed and their customers served. If you’re a small business seeking a trusted partner to stand with you during tough times, don’t hesitate to reach out to an office today. 

Amanda Aguillard Joins Padgett Leadership Team As COO

With plans to help continue the company’s push to explore, adopt and deploy the latest in technology that benefit its franchisees and serve its clients, Amanda Aguillard, CPA has joined PADGETT BUSINESS SERVICES® as the company’s new Chief Operating Officer (COO). An acclaimed leader in the accounting industry, she’ll be tasked with providing operational and logistical guidance for the company’s network of franchisees.  

As COO, Aguillard’s responsibilities will include identifying and incorporating the latest cloud technologies into Padgett’s operating model. Aguillard also will be focused on developing and facilitating the necessary trainings to ensure these platforms and tools are successfully implemented  by Padgett firms.  

“One of the things that most intrigued me about joining the Padgett team is the fact that we have the resources of large, national brand, but, we’re also this network of small, local practices with deep connections to their own individual communities,” Aguillard said. “Because of COVID-19, many of our clients have been forced to adopt technology in some form or fashion. That gives us the opportunity to take advantage of these resources to better equip our offices to serve these clients during a time of rapid change.” 

Aguillard has been recognized as one of the Top 50 Women in Accounting, as well as a Hubdoc Top 50 Cloud Accountant. She also is an ambassador for Xero, being named the company’s Evangelist of the Year in 2016. Aguillard recently released Xero: A Comprehensive Guide for Accountants and Bookkeepers which provides an easy-to-follow guide for accountants eager to better utilize this software platform. 

Regarded as one of the visionary leaders in the accounting industry, she founded Accounting Salon, a think tank of accounting experts, to better develop strategies and tools to assist accountants as they evaluate incorporating cloud-based accounting services into their practices. She’s worked in both large, national accounting firms, as well as founded and managed her own small business. This professional background has enabled her to accrue a wealth of experiences and perspectives that will aid Padgett as it continues to find ways to best serve its franchisees and their customers. 

“There’s no doubt that Amanda is going to be a great addition to the Padgett corporate team, and her expansive experience and extensive expertise will enable us to grow smarter and adapt faster,” said Jeff Phillips, Padgett’s CEO. “At Padgett, we want to be at the forefront of innovation, helping to spur change that empowers our offices and helps their customers. The pandemic forced us to adapt, and we’ve learned a lot in the past year. Amanda is the right person to take those learnings and propel us to the next level with regard to customer service and cutting-edge technology.” 

Aguillard, who will work remotely from New Orleans, Louisiana, like most of Padgett’s executive leadership team, graduated with a Masters in Taxation from the University of Denver. A native of Louisiana, she’s a fan of New Orleans’s rich culture, including its renowned food scene. When she’s not driving change in the accounting industry, she likely can be found on a hiking trail as she’s traversed paths from Utah to Georgia. 

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