What is plug-and-play?

Plug-and-Play software has been a hot topic of discussion recently, with the Main Street Fairness Act on the horizon, but people say there are few true plug-and-play software options out there for sales tax software. To understand this argument, we first need to understand what makes software plug-and-play and how it affects your business. Think about a computer and a device like a camera. At one time you had to install special drivers to be able to connect your computer to the device to access information. Remember when cameras came with a CD-ROM of software you had to install in order to be able to get the pictures from the camera to the phone? Now, you just plug the camera in and play — get the pictures or view the videos. In terms of software, plug-and-play can mean a couple of different things but the basic meaning is that you don’t have to do anything special to get the sales tax software to work. It fits into your existing system without any special changes and works from day one.

There’s no setup time, no struggles to keep things working, no maintenance that needs to be routinely done. Plug-and-play software takes a lot of effort to produce because it has to be able to work in any computer environment and requires a lot of background work to continue to be plug-and-play. As sales tax laws are updated and changed, the software needs to reflect those changes with regular updates. Someone has to implement these changes, even if it’s all automated on the user side. While it seems like plug-and-play means it’s seamless and completely automatic, it actually means that for the user side only. However, this isn’t a bad thing. As a sales tax software provider, we see it as our duty to do all the work it takes to make your software as close to plug-and-play as possible.

We made our sales tax filing solution web-based because it doesn’t require extra work to install–simply login and get to work. Updates are also all run on our side of the equation so you don’t have to. There’s no worrying about the latest changes in sales tax or keeping track of filing dates. Instead, all that information is fully integrated into the sales tax software and we take care of the rest. After all, it’s our job to make sales tax software work, not yours.

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