Thursday, January 21, 2010

New Members Had Questions. We Had Answers.

The office is calm now, but it wasn’t so quiet this morning! Every so often, staff at the VSCPA take some time to call members just to check in. This morning, staff called about 600 members who had recently joined to welcome them to the Society and find out how things are going.

We asked our newest members if they had any questions about their VSCPA membership so far. Here are a few of the actual questions we received this morning, along with the answers:

Question: How do I log in to the website (to change my contact information, register for a course, etc.)?
Answer: Click on the “For Members” section of the menu at Your username is your last name, and your password is your member ID number, unless you’ve changed it. Give us a call at (800) 733-8272 if you need a refresher.

Question: I'm not in public accounting. Are there many other members who work in industry?
Answer: There sure are! Right now, CPAs in public accounting make up 42.5 percent of our membership, so the majority of members work in industry, education, government and other fields. No matter what you do, this is a community for you. [By the way, check out the free Business & Industry Virtual Roundtable on February 24 for a great way to connect and share best practices with other industry members.]

Question: Now that I’ve joined, how can I get more involved with the VSCPA?
Answer: [We love this question.] It depends on how and why you’d like to get involved, but here are a few ways to get started:

  • If you feel like volunteering your time, check out our various volunteer opportunities online. While the deadline for some 2010–2011 volunteer opportunities has passed, there are several year-round roles to fill.
  • If you’d like to network, consider joining our quickly-growing social networking sites or visiting your local chapter. Local chapters offer CPE, volunteer opportunities and a great way to connect on the local level. Keep an eye on the “CPE & Networking” section of the site for virtual and in-person networking and CPE events, which also help you connect. Oh, and check out the searchable Membership Directory.
  • Consider writing an article for a VSCPA publication to share your expertise.
  • Check out information on the VSCPA Educational Foundation and CPA PAC of Virginia for ways you can support the CPA profession in Virginia.
  • There are so many other ways to get involved. Let us know if you’d like help brainstorming!
Question: Do you offer any pro bono tax programs I can volunteer for?
Answer: Yes we do, and we’d love your help! Check out all the VSCPA offers on its consumer site,, and contact VSCPA Community Relations Coordinator Tracey Zink at (804) 612-9427 to volunteer for any of the programs listed.

Question: What career resources can the VSCPA offer me?
Answer: The VSCPA offers several resources to help you land a great position. Browse the online Career Center for job openings, and sign up for the LinkedIn group to receive news on available positions. Also, we know the down economy has been tough for many members. Check out the VSCPA’s Economic Resource Center for a list of resources and articles to help you weather the downturn.

Question: Can you help me pass the CPA Exam?
Answer: Perhaps indirectly. We offer our members deep discounts on CPA Exam prep, among other goods and services. Study hard!

Question: Do you have any resources to help me get through tax season?
Answer: We sure do!
  • Lean on your fellow members in tax this season and benefit from their collective expertise by signing up for the VSCPA Taxation E-mail Listserve. This listserve is an incredibly popular resource year-round.
  • The VSCPA hosts an online referral database, CPA Referral Online. Fill out this sign-up form to make sure you’re listed.
  • Stay tuned to VSCPA communications for tax headlines throughout tax season.
This just scratches the surface of how you can leverage your VSCPA membership. Want to know more? There’s a virtual New Member Orientation Wednesday, March 24, 2010, from 12:30 – 1:30 p.m. We’ll walk you through accessing your membership benefits online and connecting with other VSCPA members across the Commonwealth.

Whether you’re a new or veteran member, don’t hesitate to call us any time to ask a question, inquire about a resource, or leave feedback. The Member Services Hotline is (800) 733-8272.

Welcome, new members, and thanks for the great questions!

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