CPA Practice Advisor

AUG 2018

Today's Technology for Tomorrow's Firm.

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AUGUST 2018 ■ 3 FROM THE EDITOR GAIL PERRY, CPA Editor-in-Chief @gperrycpa A New Outlook for Your Accounting Practice It’s state fair time in Indiana, so naturally we’re going to be working pork chop sandwiches and Ferris wheels and cow barns and classic tractor parades into our regular routine. My photographer husband has entered some of his photography into the state fair competition this year, and so we’re balancing an excitement of bringing something new to the fairgrounds with the love for keeping things the same way they’ve always been. Change vs. Old School is something the accounting profession has had to deal with in recent years too, and while that theme isn’t new to these pages, I’d like to give it a bit of a different twist. I’ve been having a lot of discussions with people lately about what they would do differently if they were to have a clean slate. And rather than considering a complete, start-from-scratch clean slate, which definitely leads to a fascinating conversation, for the purpose of this article, let’s just consider a clean slate in your workplace. As it stands now, every day is about the same. You go to the same place to work, and even if you’re working at a client’s workplace, you take the same tools with you, follow the same route, set up the same sort of space. Your staff, assuming you don’t work independently, has been with you for some time, and they all take care of their expected tasks. You use the same pens and pencils, the same worksheet templates, the same software programs, the same document storage devices – the same things you’ve been using probably for years. Now, set aside some time, plan a discussion with your colleagues and even some clients, and picture yourself starting fresh. You walk in the door of your office or workplace, and the space is empty – waiting for you to design it in the most useful and efficient way possible. Where would you start? What about the design of your workspace is most important to completing the jobs you need to do? Now onto your staff. Are you using staff members in the most efficient and effective ways possible? Do they have the training you would like them to have? Do they all get along with one another? How could you help them be better versions of themselves and provide better work product to help the firm and its clients? Consider the tools – the old school tools as well as the technology. What works the way you want it to work? What needs improvement? Where can you go to find the solutions to make sure the tools you’re using are the best? Think about the jobs themselves. Are you doing the work you want to do, for the clients you want to work with, and in the way you want to do it? Is it time to expand your service offerings? Or cut back on services that aren’t profitable or that simply aren’t enjoyable? And the biggest questions – what are your goals for your practice? Are you hoping to grow the practice, or cut it back? If expansion is in the cards for you, do you want to expand your client base or do more for the existing clients? Are you hoping to focus on a niche industry? What do you think your clients are going to need from your firm in five years, and are you prepared to provide that service? None of these questions can be answered quickly, nor should they be. Take them on, one at a time, and lay out a plan for your future that will serve as your blueprint for the years ahead. And then start figuring out how you’re going to make that happen! Meanwhile, enjoy the remaining days of summer, get some fresh air, remember what’s good about everything that surrounds you, and then interject some newness to help you freshen your outlook. ■ — Gail Perry, Editor-in-Chief Published by Endeavor Business Media PO Box 803 | 1233 Janesville Ave. | Fort Atkinson, WI 53538 | 920-563-6388 | 800-547-7377 VOLUME 28, NUMBER 6 Publisher: Barry Strobel Editor-in-Chief: Gail Perry, CPA Managing Editor: Isaac M. O'Bannon National Sales Manager: Lou Meszoros Columnists: Ken Berry, JD Doug Sleeter Jim Boomer, CPA.CITP Kristy Short Randy Johnston Rene Lacerte Roman H. Kepczyk, CPA.CITP Paul McDonald Amy Vetter, CPA.CITP, CGMA Becky Livingston Reviewers: Mary Girsch-Bock John Higgins, CPA Art Director: Rhonda Cousin Site Manager: Lester Craft Production Manager: Barb Evenson Audience Development Manager: Ella Dean Today's Technology for Tomorrow's Firm CPA Today's Technology for Tomorrow's Firm NSA Practice Advisor (USPS 017-576), (ISSN 2160-8725 print; ISSN 2160-8733 online) is published six times per year (February, April, June/July, August, October and December) by Endeavor Business Media, incorporating two editions known as CPA Practice Advisor and NSA Practice Advisor. Periodicals postage paid at Fort Atkinson, WI 53538 and additional mailing offices. POSTMASTER: Send address changes to Practice Advisor, PO Box 3257, Northbrook, IL 60065-3257. Canada Post PM40612608. Return undeliverable Canadian addresses to: Practice Advisor, PO Box 25542, London, ON N6C 6B2. Subscriptions: Individual subscriptions are available without charge in the U.S. to qualified subscribers. Publisher reserves the right to reject non-qualified subscriptions. Subscription prices: The basic annual rate is $3, based on qualifying associations of 10,000 or more public accountants that may also subscribe for all their public accountant members (certain restrictive covenants apply) for a basic subscription rate of $9 per member for a three-year subscription. One year subscription for all others: USA - $37; CAN $64+Tax GST; INT'L $91 GST. All subscriptions payable in U.S. funds, drawn on U.S. bank. Canadian GST#842773848. Back issue $10 prepaid, if available. Printed in the USA. Copyright 2018 Endeavor Business Media. All rights reserved. No part of this publication may be reproduced or transmitted in any form or by any means, electronic or mechanical, including photocopy, recordings or any information storage or retrieval system, without permission from the publisher. Endeavor Business Media does not assume and hereby disclaims any liability to any person or company for any loss or damage caused by errors or omissions in the material herein, regardless of whether such errors result from negligence, accident or any other cause whatsoever. The views and opinions in the articles herein are not to be taken as official expressions of the publishers, unless so stated. The publishers do not warrant, either expressly or by implication, the factual accuracy of the articles herein, nor do they so warrant any views or opinions offered by the authors of said articles. The opinions given by contributing authors are their own and are not the opinions of our staff. All trademarks used are the property of their respective owner. Editorial Advisory Board: Jim Bourke, CPA.CITP, CGMA, CFF Jim Boomer, CPA.CITP, CGMA, MBA Bob Cedergren, CPA.CITP, CGMA, CISA Randy Johnston, MCS Greg LaFollette, CPA.CITP, CGMA Donny Shimamoto, CPA.CITP, CGMA Doug Sleeter Sandra Wiley, PHR, SPHR ENDEAVOR BUSINESS MEDIA CEO: Chris Ferrell VP, Production Operations: Curt Pordes VP, Technology: Eric Kammerzelt Executive Vice President: Gloria Cosby Director of Digital Business Dev.: Lester Craft Subscription Customer Service 877-382-9187; 847-559-7598 PO Box 3257, Northbrook IL 60065-3257 Article reprints: Brett Petillo Wright's Media 877-652-5295, ext. 118 List Rentals: Elizabeth Jackson email: phone: 847-492-1350 ext. 18 fax: 847-492-0085

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