Summit Hosting is proud to highlight its celebrated partner, Avalara. Recently, we interviewed Travis Hussey, Sales Executive at Avalara to learn more about their product Avatax and how it can help your business streamline tax compliance and reduce audit risk.
Tell us about Avalara.
Avalara is headquartered in Seattle, Washington, started in 2004, and we’re the world’s leader in sales tax automation. So anything transactional tax we offer an end to end solution for tax compliance. And our goal is to really streamline something that’s very tedious and manual for businesses through automation, while ensuring that you’re accurate with tax calculation, you’re compliant, everything is filed accurately and on time. If you have exempt customers we streamline that process as well. So we offer an end to end solution for tax compliance as well as various professional services, which can make Avalara your one tax partner. And we have goals to continue to grow our offering and one day become part of every transaction in the world.
What industries do your customers work in?
Avalara actually has 50,000 plus core customers. If you count all of our customers, probably closer to a hundred thousand. But we basically work with any industry you can think of, so whether it be retail, eCommerce, manufacturing and distribution, software, SaaS companies— really there’s there’s not a single industry that we don’t have content for and a tax solution for. Then as far as the systems we integrate into, we have 1200 plus systems that we integrate with now, whether it’s your accounting platform or ERP like QuickBooks or recurring billing platform, eCommerce things like that. So with that, we’re able to calculate sales tax accurately in real time and give customers detailed reporting and really streamline their process and take a lot of that off their plate.
How does Summit Hosting play a role in your customer’s journey?
A lot of the customers that I personally work with here on our emerging small business team use QuickBooks as well as other accounting platforms and mission critical applications. So the role Summit Hosting plays is hey, a lot of these customers of ours also have on premise applications such as QuickBooks Desktop or Enterprise and could really benefit from being able to access that in the cloud from anywhere regardless of where their users are and really have peace of mind that all their business critical applications are up and running and accessible. And also just kinda streamline their process for having a partner that can host that. Similar to how we are a tax partner that has a cloud based application and tax engine. So it’s a great fit.
Are there challenges that your customers had that Summit Hosting’s cloud solution is solving for them?
Any business that we work with that has an on-prem version of QuickBooks like desktop, like enterprise, they’re able to easily host that in the cloud through Summit Hosting. So we usually just refer those folks over to you all. And those customers’ users are able to access their business critical applications or files from any location, any device, all at the same time securely. And Summit also handles all the server updates, data security, antivirus and then also 24/7 US based tech support, which is somewhat rare these days. And that really frees up their IT staff to focus on other tasks.
What is it like to work with the Summit Hosting team?
It’s been amazing so far. I mean, they’re a great partner to work with. We’re grateful for partners like Summit that are very proactive and you can just tell that they really care about their customers and want to deliver a solution that’ll really help them solve business challenges.
What attracted a Avalara to partner up with Summit Hosting?
What attracted us to Summit is they’re one of the top fastest growing single tenant hosting cloud solutions in the market. And you can tell they’re just really passionate about solving customers’ challenges. Summit specializes in hosting third party applications like Avatax. They make server setting adjustments to their servers, thousands of applications with increased server performance. With Summit’s ability to host every application, you can bring your entire expensive in-house server into the cloud with Summit Secure Workspace security package, you can ensure your data is safe. With Summit’s, 99% guaranteed uptime, you can count on your business data always being accessible 24 hours a day, seven days a week much like a Avalara’s cloud based tax engine. Which also has a 99% uptime.
How does the future look for Avalara?
For Avalara, the future’s bright orange! So we’re helping the world and the quest for transactional tax compliance and feel great about offering something that really streamlines this process for businesses that don’t wanna manage something manually that’s so tedious, and do it in a cost effective way versus alternatives. Which is hey, having your staff manage it manually in house, taking them away from revenue driving activities, or maybe paying a CPA in billable hours, which is often a lot more costly than leveraging our software to automate and streamline the process. So we’re always constantly looking to add features and functionality to our offering, whether it be the professional services side of the house or software features and functionality.
Currently we have that end to end solution for US tax compliance in North America. But we’re as of recent, we’ve added a lot of functionality to our cross border offering which helps with HS codes calculating customs duties, import taxes, as well as VAT compliance for any of our mutual customers that sell globally. And then also a big one that we’ve added recently would be tax research and consulting. So in the past folks have asked me like, Hey, do you guys provide consulting and help us with our tax policy? And in the past that answer was no. But through an acquisition we now offer Avalara tax research where we can do a lot of things as far as, you know sales tax risk assessment or Nexus studies, guidance on Nexus registrations where a business should be registered in collecting sales tax, as well as the taxability of their products and services, and then kind of go into our software for automating the process moving forward. So we’re gonna continue to add to our product offering. Avalara currently can be a one stop shop for tax compliance and your one tax provider for anything transactional tax, some income tax, things like that. But we’re gonna continue adding to that into the future, so we can further automate and streamline things and really let businesses outsource as much or as little as they want to.
Summit’s customizable dedicated servers, enterprise-level security, and 24/7 U.S.-based support make moving to the cloud easier and more secure than ever before. That’s why leading third-party products for QuickBooks, Sage, and SAP choose Summit as their platform of choice.
Apply to the Summit Hosting Partner Program today.