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After 27 years in the accounting profession, I am no novice to sales tax. However, I am fairly new to the Avalara world and did not know what to expect when I was invited to attend Avalara’s annual CRUSH conference.

This conference could not have been timelier for me.  After leaving my position with a large public accounting firm in 2017, I launched my own sales tax consulting practice.  I started a partnership with Avalara so I could provide sales tax compliance solutions to my clientele in the small and medium sized-business niche. With my new business, my relationship with Avalara and their team made a big leap from a casual recommender to one where I assist clients with implementations. 

Avalara’s CRUSH conference has proven to be a strategic part of building a successful business. I was not sure I was going to attend, but I thought, what the heck, I’ll try it out.  At the conference, I was impressed by the speakers and Avalara’s excitement and commitment to sales tax compliance.  But it was more than your typical conference experience.

Attending CRUSH provided the opportunity to experience the heart of Avalara’s people and culture.   The Avalara team’s excitement and commitment to make this one of the most beneficial and enjoyable conferences for the attendees was unparalleled. Most importantly, great speakers covered practical topics – especially importantly to me, the basics of how Avalara and CertCapture works. Additionally, the great opportunity to visit the Learning Lab, meet with Avalara personnel about specific applications like TrustFile, great meals, special entertainment in the evenings, and seemingly every other detail was engineered to make CRUSHDC an amazingly profitable and enjoyable time. 

As a result of attending CRUSH, I now share the enthusiasm of being an integral part of the Avalara team, as we work together to provide clients a quality solution to the sales tax compliance needs. I have had the opportunity to bring one client on board successfully with Avalara solutions and am now assisting two other clients re-implement launches where one is running smoothly and the second will be shortly.  I am confident that my partnership with Avalara will serve my clients well.

I’m adding this to my list of must attend conferences.  I will look forward to CRUSH in 2019, which will be held in Newport Beach.

Brent Watson
Brent Watson, CPA, is a state and local tax manager for SALTA, PLLC in Tulsa, Okla. Brent is an active member of the Oklahoma Society of Certified Public Accountants (serving on their Oil & Gas Committee) and of the Institute for Professionals in Taxation. He has 27 years of experience in sales and use taxes and concentrates in the manufacturing, oil and gas, multi-state contracting and retailing industries.
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