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April 2018 Article Archives

Recognizing a CPA Firm Manager

Published on April 17, 2018

Earning a Public Accounting Firm Manager (PAFM) designation from the CPA Firm Management Association (CPAFMA) recognizes a CPA firm manager as someone who is working at the top level within our profession and exemplifies their professional capabilities, experience and achievement. The process of attaining the PAFM designation includes meeting the experience and education-based eligibility requirements, agreeing to adhere to CPAFMA’s Core Values of a Firm Manager, and fulfilling the continuing education/recertification requirements. The PAFM designation will identify you or your firm’s accounting firm manager, regardless of title, as a dedicated and experienced firm management professional who understands the unique and challenging issues of managing your firm.


Take the Challenge and Save

Published on April 17, 2018

Define a clear path to your firm’s future, no matter your practice size, with the combined benefits of the 2018 CPAFMA National Practice Management Conference and AICPA ENGAGE. Build a long-term plan for sustainable business development with sessions such as:

In addition, look for breakout sessions geared to various firm sizes, business development techniques and multiple networking opportunities to spur innovative ideas. Gain the latest learning, tools and tech information to elevate your role as an accounting firm manager. Invest in your firm’s greatest asset - human capital - and reap the benefits of a stronger culture and increased profitability.


Happiness is the Key to Success

Published on April 17, 2018 by Sharon Trabbic, PAFM, William Vaughan Company

“Success is not the key to happiness.  Happiness is the key to success.  If you love what you’re doing, you will be successful.”  - Herman Cain

As managers of our accounting practices, I think one of our main responsibilities is keeping people happy. It can be a copier that doesn’t break down during tax season, a benefits program that really helps people when they need it most, healthy snacks in the kitchen, pushing the partners for a dress-for-your-day policy, or even providing a new employee a list of acronyms we use day in and day out (is SALY an employee or Same As Last Year?). It can be giving a pregnant employee a back cushion for her chair, or even holding the door for an employee loaded down with her laptop, purse and audit bag. 


Busy Season is Retention Season

Published on April 17, 2018 by Michael Mariano, PAFM, CPAFMA Director

Many of us that have Firm Administration duties also have HR duties, and many HR only people are CPAFMA members, so this idea should hit home with most of us.

The accountants have all been busy with their audits and taxes and we’ve been playing catch-up on all the things we couldn’t get done when the accountants and partners were less busy and came to us with ideas and issues and projects. Busy season is always my quietest time of year as far as interruptions. 

We need to make sure that during slower times, we put some of that time and energy into employee retention. It’s important all year long, but a little more so when time is available. Workloads have gotten tough throughout the year and people get tense and that can lead to negative thoughts. Firm managers need to give that extra effort to make work fun and get people looking forward to working extra hours, not dreading it.


How Was Your Opportunity Season?

Published on April 17, 2018 by Jane Johnson, MBA, PAFM, ACMPE, Grimbleby Coleman

Happy end to opportunity season!  Here in spoiled, sunny California, we experienced an early spring. The flowers have bloomed and we’ve had beautiful days of 70 degree weather. It has made it hard to stay inside the office working.

Several months ago we had the opportunity to go on a family vacation to Disneyland. This was a real treat; because we are beginning a season of having adult children, we hadn’t been on a family trip for several years.  We had the privilege of sharing a momentous occasion—our son proposed to his girlfriend, right in front of Sleeping Beauty's Castle.


Book Review: The Anticipatory Organization by Daniel Burrus

Published on April 17, 2018 by Roman Kepczyk, CPA.CITP, CGMA, PAFM, Xcentric

As a CPA firm consultant, I spend a significant amount of time researching computer equipment, accounting applications, and evaluating consulting methodologies and tools that will make me a better consultant and more useful to accounting firms.  Over the past few years I have seen Daniel Burrus speak at various accounting conferences and heard of his work within the CPA profession through the Business Learning Institute (founded by the Maryland Association of CPAs).  Because of those connections, I chose to read his book “The Anticipatory Organization” (2017), which focuses business owners on relying upon the absolute “hard” trends that will occur over the questionable “soft” trends that may occur.  By understanding the difference, and prioritizing decisions on hard trends, individuals and firms would be able to become more anticipatory of future changes and move their firm towards them rather than stagnating or moving their firm in the entirely wrong direction.  The book is broken into four sections which I summarize my key personal takeaways below:


How AP and Finance Can Win with Automation

Published on April 12, 2018 by Brent Meyers, Nvoicepay

I’ve been selling to accounting and finance professionals for most of my career, and I can honestly say that I’ve never seen so much technology available for those functions as there is now. Just a decade ago, the options were basic and few: ERP systems, invoice scanning, and workflow. If you wanted electronic payments, you would set up an ACH or card program through your bank.

Now we have dozens of cloud accounting systems; ERP systems for businesses of every size and every vertical market; budgeting, forecasting and financial reporting systems; subscription billing systems, and cloud expense management systems. We have fintechs offering automated one-file payment programs, or automated international payments, or both. We’ve got systems that automate the financial close. Further upstream, we’ve got new procure to pay systems. Technology innovation is reviving trade finance. Many parts of auditing are also being automated.


PCPS' Comparison of FRF for SMEs to Other Bases of Accounting

Published on April 12, 2018

Has it been a while since you looked at the Financial Reporting Framework for Small and Medium-Sized Entities as an option for your privately-held clients? With accounting standards changes and income tax changes, there's a lot going on right now and the changes can be pretty complex. Use the FRF SME Comparison to Other Bases of Accounting resource along with other tools in the FRF for SME toolkit to learn more about the opportunities to introduce clients to a non-GAAP method of presenting useful, relevant financial statement information.