How the “1099 Economy” Will Transform Accounting

‘Uberization’ disrupts the CPA business model.

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By Hitendra Patil

In “Four Signs the Uberization of Accounting Has Already Begun,” we analyzed the opportunities and threats for CPA firms’ operations. After some more research into the “1099 economy” or the “contingent workforce,” the evidence all seems to point in one direction: Transformation in the business model of accounting firms. The US Dept. of Labor notes that employers are seeking new ways to make employment more flexible with contingent work arrangement, and the DoL recommends that the definition of employee and that of employer should be standardized and grounded in changed economic realities:

  • 53 million workers in the US are now “freelance workers.”
  • 2 million workers are “contingent workers” and this number is estimated to double by the year 2020.
  • More millennials freelance than any other age group.

These and many other findings indicate key impacts on how accounting firms will do business in future. Here are some of our thoughts: