Small Business of the Year Finalist Profile – Karen C. Simmons PC



When it comes to handling a client’s financials and/or taxes, the margin for error is zero.


And that’s a truism that applies to the majority of Karen C. Simmons PC’s customers – small businesses. Before starting her own company five years ago, Karen Simmons was a partner in a larger firm.


In the past year, she has implemented new technologies, offering clients 24/7 access to tax records, the ability to export file backups and live, one-on-one assistance.


Despite crediting increased technology with making her more efficient, technology also presents one of the company’s greatest challenges, Simmons said. Delays in releasing tax season software reduce an industry-wide four-month busy season down to one. Employees participate in continuing education and adjust hours to stay ahead of the timeline as much as possible.


Last year, Simmons took advantage of the decreasing number of firms offering payroll services by purchasing a Payroll Vault franchise. The move is saving her customers time, money and liability, and expanded her services to include payroll, timekeeping and human resource functions.


While retaining employees at a small company can be challenging, Simmons believes her family-friendly policies make the difference.


“Employees who are encouraged to actively participate in the things they enjoy tend to have an even greater drive to be successful in their jobs,” she said.



On Wednesday, June 8, during the Chamber’s Small Business Awards luncheon, the winner will be revealed as well as the Outstanding Entrepreneur of the Year, E. Grace Pilot, co-founder of Pilot Catastrophe Services.


During the Small Business conference, the Chamber will offer three valuable professional development opportunities to increase business growth. Topics include matching small businesses and potential lenders, addressing critical legal issues and engaging employees in the innovation process.



Click here to read The Business View – May 2016