Social collaboration is no longer a stranger to the world of finance. In an exciting update for customers and prospects, Intacct announced at Dreamforce 2013 that we will soon embed Salesforce Chatter into our cloud-based finance and accounting software. Chatter in Intacct will be available in early 2014 as a free update for all existing customers. This is the deepest and most comprehensive integration that has announced for its popular Chatter social network. And, because Chatter is built on the Salesforce1 platform, Chatter Inside Intacct works across all your connected devices.

If you’ve never used Chatter, it’s a social collaboration layer in Salesforce for sharing information and creating dialogue around business events, processes, and transactions. Salesforce customers use it to collaborate on sales activities, marketing campaigns, and customer support cases with more knowledge and speed. It’s also an effective tool for document sharing and social intelligence, such as, finding experts you need quickly inside your own company.

We think it’s going to be a killer app for finance and accounting people, as well. Using Chatter Inside Intacct, you’ll be able to do things like:

  • “Follow” transactions and records of interest
  • Create efficiencies in rote processes such as PO requests and order fulfillment, to get answers faster and close the loop
  • Improve collaboration between a BPO or CPA firm with its clients from within Intacct—instead of resorting to email or the phone when questions come up
  • Add a much-needed social element to transactional processes and create a dialogue versus an impersonal and slow set of workflows
  • Create an audit trail for transactions through dialogue
  • Increase knowledge sharing between distinct areas of the business around customer status. For instance: a sales rep knows if a customer’s payment is late and can help accounting by following up, or a VP can be alerted if there have been support escalations for an important customer
  • Create groups for collaborating around key processes such as the financial close

Most importantly, by embedding Salesforce Chatter into Intacct, we’ve given your finance and accounting team the same social network your sales, marketing, and support teams are already using. This common social network means the front office and back office can collaborate directly using the same tools. We’ve also unified the “social view” of important records. For example, a sales rep can add comments to an account record in Salesforce and your accountants will see the comments in the corresponding Intacct customer record.

Conventional wisdom says accountants don’t want to be social in their business applications. We disagree. The last generation of business applications drove users into transactional systems with nicely implemented workflow routing and controls. These systems were great at enforcing policies, but in the process, they muted the collaboration and creative interaction even accountants need to be productive. We believe Salesforce Chatter embedded in Intacct will drive the same kind of social revolution in the back office it’s already leading in the front office.

Follow Intacct on all our social media channels, including Facebook, Twitter, and LinkedIn. To network with other people interested in cloud financial applications, be sure to join the Intacct Cloud Accounting group and the CFOInsights group on LinkedIn.