of the Month: SmartPros.com
By Susan B. Anders
SmartPros.com has been featured twice by this column, most
recently in September 2001, and in August 2000 during its
incarnation as Pro2net.com, the website has added many new
features, moved the continuing education functions to a
separate website, and added a layer of organization by subject
area that makes the search process easier.
is an accounting portal that provides news, well-organized
links, research materials, and career resources. Additionally,
the website offers books and CPE courses for purchase on
many timely topics. SmartPros.com is easy to navigate, and
many resources can be accessed from several locations. Users
should review the drop-down indexes carefully because some
features can be accessed only from the drop-downs.
main horizontal index appears at the top of all webpages
and includes hyperlinks for the different services the website
provides, including member services and CPE. Since the September
2001 review, the website has added a second horizontal index
of subject areas, including accounting & auditing, ethics
& compliance, financial planning, human resources, international,
legal, corporate finance, students, tax, and technology.
The subsidiary subject-area webpages provide a narrowed
focus in a format similar to the homepage. Individual
article webpages also provide links to related articles,
books, websites, and other materials.
has so much information that first-time users may want to
spend time exploring the subject-area webpages before beginning
any serious search. Current articles and other resources
on some topics, such as the new CPA exam and CPE courses,
can be found under several subject areas.
resource library offers links to accounting organizations,
state boards of accountancy, federal and state taxation
websites, and an audit glossary. One useful feature is the
compilation of links to a large number of area-specific
websites. Another nice feature is an extensive list of hyperlinks
to journals and newsletters.
resources are now available at http://education.smartpros.com,
which can also be accessed through the main menu. Additionally,
hyperlinks to courses can be found throughout the main website.
SmartPros offers free demo courses and the opportunity to
earn CPE credits by pretesting a course.
preparing for the CPA exam can access free CPA exam tips
from SmartPros’ homepage, as well as from advertisement-style
links. Study guides and other books available for purchase
can be found in the student area, as well as in the marketplace
to articles and books on career information can be located
in the student, human resources, and interact areas. Articles
include “Moving Up: A Great Time for Accountants,”
“Standing Out From the Crowd: Earning an Advanced
Certification,” and “2004 Salary Forecasts.”
The career center, found in the main index, offers a career
guide, articles on career advice, and many articles and
links addressing internships. The career center also offers
job-search functions provided by Jobsinthemoney.com and
B. Anders, PhD, CPA, is an associate professor at
St. Bonaventure University, N.Y.