Turbo Tax Akin to Design-Build

Posted on May 30, 2012

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My bank statement this month officially concluded my Turbo Tax 2012 experience as a resounding success; it confirmed my auto-deposit tax refund from the federal government.

Tax season may have begun and ended months ago for accountants and those who like to get an early start. Me?  This year was the latest I have ever filed:  April 14 at 10pm.  And I’m not a natural procrastinator.

When I look back, I realized my Turbo Tax story is identical to many of those who rely on integrated design-build to deliver their healthcare projects. It makes sense as an analogous illustration.

I am not proud of how my tax situation developed, and I feel like by adopting Turbo Tax, I escaped without the punishment that was due to me. This year was just more hectic than most; with work travel and home distractions, tax preparation was not legitimately on my radar until March. And then March was suddenly gone.

Historically, I am a paper-and-pencil tax guy, a textbook late adopter. I have a simple life with no complex business or investment interests. I tried H&R Block once and never saw the value.

But since my daughter’s birth three years ago, I started to lose my DIY edge:  in addition to being increasingly pressed for time, I had two mistakes that resulted in additional credits returned to me by Uncle Sam after filing (evidence the Fed can have compassion)! I started to worry I was both a risk for not getting what was due back, and perhaps an audit candidate.

Stories of how well Turbo Tax worked for others the past couple years were almost legendary—days saved, headaches gone, larger refunds. My expectations were growing as was my skepticism. Was it really that good?

By the time I sat down Saturday, April 14 at 8pm, I was practically out of options. I wondered how I would even pick the correct price package, not wanting to be swindled despite my desperation.

Having my receipts and last year’s return in hand was the only thing I did to prepare prior to logging on. From the homepage, Turbo Tax was easy. It auto-sorted me and I was off, without having to pay or commit upfront. I don’t remember an elaborate sign-in procedure; it dove right in.

After 30 minutes, I felt I was halfway home. It had widgets to let me know how I was progressing, how my potential refund was faring, and offering to save my info for later—all in real-time.

Before long, I was done. It even supplied a temperature gauge on the likelihood of an audit. The result was in line with recent history so no surprise there. It was everything else that was impressive. 

Here are some similarities Turbo Tax (the value offering for tax preparation) shares with what some clients say integrated design-build (the value offering for project delivery) provides:

  • Clear and constant communication
  • Administratively non-taxing (pun intended)
  • Actionable, real-time information
  • Easy, one-stop total solution
  • Made painful experience pleasurable
  • Managed majority of risk
  • Fast…with great results
  • Excellent value

I know I sound like a Turbo Tax commercial:  I am a convert, never going back.  Turbo Tax exceeded my expectations. I wish I had done it years ago.

Such success stories with a fully integrated project team can be equally as passionate. There is only so much a person can say about it; it really is something you have to decide to test out and experience yourself.

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Posted in: Design-Build