Today's Features

Are Accountants Learning the Wrong Lessons?

https://www.research.net/r/CPE16
Tooling up for 2017: Join the survey, get the results.

CPE choices fail to address the real keys to success.

By Rick Telberg
CPA Trendlines Research

CPAs are saying one thing and doing another. And the discrepancy bodes ill for the profession's economic health.

MORE CPE TRENDS:  CPE Study Finds Six Essential Success Factors for Accounting Firms  |  Top Trending Specialty Niches  |  Busy Season Ends but Not the Focus on Taxes  |  Why Some CPAs Are Focusing on Accounting & Financial Reporting This Year  |  Top CPE Trends: How Accountants Are Re-Tooling for 2017  |  Mike Ramos on The Training Mindset: Mapping Firm Attitudes to Performance  |  Ohio CPA Society Teams with CPA Trendlines to Improve CPE ROI  |   Ed Mendlowitz on How to Choose the Right CPE  |  Sandi Leyva on Three Ways to Make CPE Work for You  |   Ed Mendlowitz on The Six Rules To Get the Most Out of CPE  |   Mike Ramos on How to Build a Powerhouse Learning Team for Your CPA Firm  |  4 Steps to Get More from Your Training Budget  |  How to Manage CPE by the Numbers  |  Three Tips for Creating Training Metrics  |  High-Impact Learning: 4 Ways to Maximize CPE ROI  |  Four New CPA Opportunities for the New Economy

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The survey on professional skills and the goals of accounting firms, being conducted with the Ohio Society of CPAs and consultant Michael Ramos, is turning up a curious mismatch. It seems, at first blush, that CPAs are studying for certain skills while reporting that something else is essential to their success.

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How to Build a Strong Landing Page for an Accounting Firm

Young businesswoman using a tabletDeliver on your promise to get the permission you need.

By Becky Livingston
The Accountant’s Social Media Handbook

What are landing pages?

MORE ON SOCIAL MEDIA: Social Media Campaign 101 | Content Categories and How to Leverage Them | How to Manage Social Media in 22 Minutes a Day | Use Finesse in Sharing, Scheduling Content | How to Schedule and Manage Social Media Activity | How Social Media Works with Accountants’ Top 5 Marketing Goals
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The challenge with the website home page is that there’s often a disconnect with the messaging. If you send out an email about the best tax practices for small business owners, sending visitors to your firm’s home page isn’t giving them the content that was promised.
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The Four Basic Parts of CPA Firm Partner Agreements

Time to retire clock faceIt's complicated. But proper policies ease buyouts and transitions.

By Bill Reeb and Dominic Cingoranelli
CPA Trendlines / Succession Institute

Here is a list of common policies regarding partner/shareholder agreements that we cover with our firms, as well as some common issues that are important to address in the policies.

MORE ON PERFORMANCE MANAGEMENT: Developing a Three-Year Vision [VIDEO] | Why the Partner Agreement Matters | Younger Partners See Succession Differently | How to Compensate Your Managing Partner | The Job of Managing Partner: Empowered or Emasculated? | How the Best Managing Partners Turn Ideas into Reality | How Retired Partners Are Robbing their Own Firms | Action Plans for Transitioning Partners | How Retirement Issues Affect Succession Planning | Develop Your Employees or Suffer the Consequences
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The SOP (standard operating policy) categories are:
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How the Best CPA Firms Capture Best Tech Practices in Procedures Manuals

Process Touch Screen Showing Workflow DesignAllot hours weekly until everyone is educated.

By Roman H. Kepczyk
Quantum of Paperless

Every firm has accountants who are 10 percent, 20 percent or even 50 percent more productive in their departments than other personnel because they have simply “figured it out.” Unfortunately, when these people leave the firm, their unique knowledge of specific processes and shortcuts goes with them.

MORE ON TECH SPENDING: Going Digital: How to Train a Client | Front-End Scanning Hits the Mainstream | Don’t Just Store Documents, Manage Them | Which Wireless Depends on Location | Stay on Top of Software Updates | Update Your Backup
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It is the responsibility of firms to capture these individuals’ best practices so that their knowledge can be shared and accessed by all firm members both now and in the future. This can be accomplished by making a concerted effort to develop a best practices manual within each department.
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Personal Tech in Rio: Top 4 New Gadgets

Smart cycling glasses
Smart cycling glasses

The coolest cool tech that made it to Rio.

By Rick Richardson
Technology This Week

The 2016 Rio Olympics are how history and there was no shortage of tech at this year's event. Athletes used all kinds of gadgets to help them train and stay fit, from heads-up displays used by cyclists to jump trackers worn by the volleyball team.

MORE TECH THIS WEEK:  MIT’s New Device Measures Power Used by Each Device in Your Home  |  Flaws in Wireless Keyboards Let Hackers See Everything You Type  |  Floor Tiles that Translate Steps into Power  |  Samsung’s $1 Billion Bet on ‘Internet of Things’  |  Google’s Modular Smartphone  |  6 Big Changes Coming to Android Phones  |  New iPhone Case with Built-in Photo Printer  |  Foldable Samsung Concept Phone Doubles as a Tablet  |  More than Just a Phone Case: An Extra Touchscreen  |   App Wants to Be the Uber for Filing Taxes  |  Gadget Turns Your Smartphone into a 3D Printer   |  Tabletop-Sized Touchscreen |  Beware! Public Wi-Fi Is Just Not Secure  |  ZTE Announces New Tablet-Projector Hybrid at Barcelona  |

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Some of them may even  find their way to your office some day. Here are a few of that gadgets hat made it to Rio: READ MORE →

How Offshoring Is Shaking Up Accounting

Young businessman on phone with colorful world map backgroundSome firms use this tactic to focus on the work only they can offer.

By Rob Nixon
Panalitix

Manufacturing companies have been using low-cost labor in developing countries for decades to produce their products. Just look at the clothes on your back. I bet very few of them are made in the U.S.A.!

MORE ON STRATEGY: The Profession Disrupted: Compliance Commoditized
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The reality is that because of escalating labor costs, most Western countries have priced themselves out of markets by attempting to produce the product locally.

Up until a few years ago, it was primarily "hardware"-based manufacturing companies using this resource. Now we are seeing "services" companies embrace the outsourcing trend with fully resourced teams.
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How CPAs Provide a Reference

Ed Mendlowitz CPA The Practice Doctor Q and AIncluding a sample letter.

By Ed Mendlowitz
The CPA Trendlines Practice Doctor

QUESTION: I have been asked to provide a reference for a former controller of a former client.

MORE PRACTICE DOCTOR Q&A: What’s In a Title? | When Staff Don’t Want to Supervise | Rule #1 for How to Get Everything Done | Too Much Paper, Too Many Drives | 34 Ways to Make More Money | I Made Partner, Now What? | How to Advise an Executor | How Much Overhead Is Too Much? | There’s More to Growth than Marketing
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Should I do it?
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Great CPA Firm Partnerships Begin with Trust

chemistry formula partnership science_1000009273-120613intAnd the 7 other key ingredients in the CPA firm success formula.

By August J. Aquila
What Makes a Great Partnership

Great partnerships are like great love affairs. There needs to be chemistry. After more than 36 years of consulting with large and small professional services firms, I’ve seen all sorts of chemistry. Some partnerships were almost toxic, most were tolerable and a few were great. Let me share my observations about great partnerships and how they got that way.

MORE on GREAT PARTNERSHIPS:  Are You Driving Your Best Partners Crazy?  |  Why ‘Walking Together’ Is So Important  |  The 4 Best Ways to Use Pre-Retirement Partners  |  7 Warning Signs for Your Firm   |    6 Ways to Pay Partners  |  Work Together Better in 11 Steps  |  The Checks and Balances Your Firm Needs  |  How to Build a Better Firm Through Teamwork  |  Drop Politics, Be Accountable  |

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Many new firms, and some longtime firms, unfortunately, don’t give a lot of thought to “What makes a great partnership?” Their main concern is survival. But the sooner a firm starts focusing on what makes it a great partnership, the better off it will be.

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Developing Your CPA Firm’s Three-Year Vision [VIDEO]

Featuring Bill Reeb and Dom Cingoranelli.

Presented by the CPA Trendlines Succession Institute Practice Management Resource Center

Reeb and Cingoranelli explain how to – and how not to – approach strategic planning for your firm.

MORE on STRATEGY: Younger Partners See Succession Differently | How to Compensate Your Managing Partner | The Job of Managing Partner: Empowered or Emasculated? | How the Best Managing Partners Turn Ideas into Reality | Make Accountability a Process |Accountability Requires Clear Expectations | Base Retirement on Today’s Operations

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They start with the objective of developing a three-year vision statement for the firm “that explains where you want the firm to be in three years, while keeping an external focus.”

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