For my existing clients, they have “met” Amy Ingram through emails as she scheduled my appointments. Amy was a computer program which has been scheduling me since 2016, preventing double bookings and ensuring that everyone was properly scheduled at a good time for them. She could handle different time zones, which was especially great as clients moved from Ottawa to Korea or Beruit.
The company which runs Amy was taken over by Bizzabo which is an event management company and they wanted the software to schedule events, as opposed to the calendar booking system which I was using.
Like the loss of a human assistant, I have lost a trusted partner and am feeling that loss. She kept me from being double booked, which was very important to me. Equally, some of my clients truly thought she was a human being. I had one client who took 15 minutes of disbelief on the phone as they tried to wrap their head around the fact that the “person” that booked the appointment with me was actually a computer program.
Goodbye Amy. I am going to miss you.
I gave a client a surprise with my phone system today and felt it would be best to post this so others are also aware.
Calling without leaving a phone message
This surprises some people, but the “cost” in time for me to handle a phone message, a text message or a “missed” phone call (without voicemail) is essentially the same on a per call/text basis. If you call, it is more effective for you and for me to leave me a voicemail, even if you called my phone in error.
If you try several times without leaving a message, you are creating “snow” in your file obscuring your important calls. I can’t locate actual important phone messages in the logs if there is only one actual conversation out of every four calls. While I want to provide outstanding service, I am labouring under circumstances which make it difficult to achieve the performance that I want for you as I try to search for what is important to you.
Multiple text messages in a conversation
I am using a system for texting which has some older components. For example, linking the multiple texts into a conversation does not happen until after I process the messages.
If you have exceeded more than 4 texts in a single conversation, it is more effective for both of us to speak on the phone rather than texting.
Text messages are not “instantaneous”
This is a factor on how I work rather than a deficiency of texting; I put my phone down and don’t pick it up for several hours. Equally, I have to specifically “refresh” the screen to obtain the text messages.
That isn’t to say that text messages are better or worst than email – It is a question of the length of the queue. During peak timeframes, every 24 hours I receive about 300+ business emails vs 20 phone calls vs 6 text conversations. As the queues are separated, the shorter queue tends to be completed faster.
You can’t text me pictures. My client portal is better suited for receiving pictures and documents.
Telemarketing and Automated Calling Systems
Due to the way that my phone system works, Telemarketing and Automated (such as Call Back) Systems can’t get through my phone system to reach a person. Please be aware of this; You require a human calling back instead of a computer system.
If you use computer software or websites, you probably have heard of the EU General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR.) It seems that everyone is gearing up to be compliant by May 25, 2018.
The GDRP is based on seven key principles. These are:
- Lawful, fair and transparent processing,
- Purpose limitation,
- Data Minimization,
- Accurate and up-to-date processing,
- Limitation of storage in the form that permits identification,
- Confidential and secure, and
- Accountability and liability.
For the most part, I have always worked towards compliance with this regulation, but I will not be compliant on May 25, 2018. I will point out that I am not required to be compliant as I do not work explicitly with EU citizens. My work is with Canadian resident individuals/businesses and individuals/businesses who have Canadian tax implications.
Compliance with all but the final principle is currently in place. In order to be compliant with the accountability and liability principle, I am required to be able to remove client data. Under Canadian laws and regulations, I am required to keep that same data for audit by the government. While I can move client information to an inactive state, I can’t remove it. This is the extent that I can be compliant.
If a EU citizen wishes to use my services, they must be aware that, during a conflict between the Canadian requirement to retain the information and the EU requirement to permit someone “to be forgotten,” I must remain compliant with the Canadian requirements.
For the above reason(s), I must regretfully decline full compliance with GDPR.
A big shout out to Andrew Cranston who jumped on the problem and helped get things fixed up.
The Canada Revenue Agency is reviewing the 2016 tax returns. In fact, they are also calling for details on 2014, 2015 and 2016 during 2017.
It is important to note the following:
- The CRA will provide only 30 days to reply to their request for information. They allow only one extension.
- The reply must be sent to the same location that requested the information. This may not necessarily be the same as where you filed your tax return or that issued your Notice.
- Failing to comply with the request will result in a denial of your claim and cause a reassessment of your tax return resulting in a balance owing.