What are Client Portals?
Client portals are used by many companies to securely pass information back and forth between the company and the client. They are web-based applications that a client must log into, usually using multi-factor authentication, then they can see their personal information, message their advisor, see messages and information from the company that is personal to them. Some portals even allow clients to directly upload any documents and files into their account so both they and the business (such as a bookkeeping firm) can access the information security. Companies like accounting firms, law firms, and financial planners/brokerage houses use client portals. They all need to communicate with their clients about the personal information that needs to be kept private. Client portals are a way to do that.
Why They Are Used
When you send information through an email or a text message it could be intercepted and used by someone else other than the intended recipient. Client portals are a safe way to pass personal information like social security numbers, bank account information, legal agreements, and other types of personal information between clients and the businesses they’re working with. Sometimes you will be sent an email with a link to click on to upload a document if you only have one or two items to send. Other times you will need to log into a portal and upload (or download) multiple documents. Document sharing goes both ways; you can securely send your advisor documents they need to complete their work and they can send you documents to read over, approve, sign, whatever they need for you to accomplish.
How We Use Client Portals
At LeMay and Company, we use a client portal called Onvio Client Center. When you come on board with us and we have your basic information including an email address we will send you a registration email to our client portal. Once registered you will be able to upload and send us your tax documents so we can work on your tax return. If you’re a business client you can send us any number of documents that we need to complete our agreed-upon work product, including tax returns. Once your tax return is completed you will find a copy in the client portal. You will be able to view it in a .pdf reader or download and print your return if you want a hard copy. One of the advantages of our portal is that we can send you a request for information through the portal; you will receive an email notifying you that there’s a message in the portal for you.
Still Have Questions?
Client portals have many uses – and we heavily rely on them. Still have questions on client portals in general? Check out this article from Elorus to learn more about how businesses can utilize one. Have questions as a customer user of a client portal that we didn’t cover? Check out this Support Bee article on portals. Wondering how we use it here to connect with you and safeguard your information? Contact us by phone at (703)-912-7862, contact us form, or set up an appointment with us!