June 17th, 2013
The Financial Accounting Standards Board has endorsed three proposals from the Private Company Council that would simplify the accounting for privately held companies. In May, the council issued a set of proposals to modify specific U.S. GAAP accounting standards for private companies, involving accounting for intangible assets acquired in business combinations, goodwill, and certain types of interest rate swaps. The FASB expects to release the standards later this month for public comment. AccountingToday
June 6th, 2013
One CPA firm is still recovering from a “superstorm” that damaged nine of its 14 offices. Another has constructed a safe room in its new office, which was built after a tornado destroyed its previous office. A third firm is adjusting to the “new normal” in a city forever changed by widespread flooding. For these firms, disaster-response planning has taken on a whole new meaning. In “Preparing for disaster: Survivors offer tips for CPA firms to make it through any catastrophe,” authors Jeff Drew and Ken Tysiac detail the challenges three firms faced after disaster struck and how the lessons they learned can be applied to you you and your firm. In a second article, they list specific issues and items to address in your disaster recovery plan. Journal of Accountancy
May 17th, 2013
There’s no shortage of reasons why an accounting manager might be kept awake at night. From a management perspective, two stand out: Marketing and business development; and, Staffing.
Hundreds of accounting professionals in a survey by Sageworks’ ProfitCents Professional Services ranked those two management issues equal in importance, and well ahead of things like pricing and compensation. Read the rest of this entry »
April 26th, 2013
With 80% of companies in the U.S. using an enterprise resource planning (ERP) system, and accounting software so ubiquitous and sophisticated even novices can keep books, you would think an accountant’s job would have gotten easier.
Not so. Remarkably, two-thirds of U.S. businesses still reconcile accounts manually, contributing to an average 48 hour workweek for management-level accounting and finance workers. Even non-management staff are putting in an average of 42 hours. Read the rest of this entry »
April 7th, 2013
Accounting and related jobs have been growing at a torrid pace these last few months and no wonder, it’s tax season, which is the busiest time of the year for the profession. A Workanomix survey bears out what so many of us who pay taxes know: to be sure we take all the deductions we’re entitled to, we prefer having an accountant handle numbers. Four out of 10 taxpayers have an accountant prepare their taxes. And the more you earn, the more likely you are to leave it up to a professional to maximize the deductions. Among those with incomes over $100,000, two-thirds say they want to be sure they’re claiming the most deductions to get the biggest possible refund. But even those earning — $30,000 to $50,000 — 49% say the same. Millenials and Baby Boomers are more apt to have an accountant prepare their taxes than are Gen Xers. AccountingToday
March 18th, 2013
Seven occupations accounted for more than 400,000 job postings last month, about one-sixth of all the new jobs that went online in February. These occupations, ranging from accountant to paralegal, are also those that will be among the fastest growing between now and the end of the decade.
The number of jobs for accountants will grow by 16%, says the Bureau of Labor Statistics. The need for paralegals will grow 16%. But the bigger winner will be medical assistants, where demand will increase a whopping 31%, or 163,000 new jobs .
Rounding out the seven are: Read the rest of this entry »
February 25th, 2013
Everyone knows CPAs are the professionals who do year-end audits, provide tax advice and handle returns for corporations. Fewer, though, know that CPAs are also advisers in complex business transactions and corporate governance, handle much of the due diligence in mergers and sales, and also work as detectives in forensic accounting situations. CPAs are even in demand by the FBI and the CIA. The American Institute of CPAs detailed a few of the less well-known jobs for CPAs. AICPA
February 20th, 2013
The American Institute of CPAs says the nation’s private accounting firms are doing better than many other parts of the U.S. economy, and “are poised for a future in which renewed growth and planning for the transition to new leaders are priorities.”
The organization’s National MAP Survey of almost 2,400 firms found two-thirds of them grew their client fees, with somewhat more than one in five seeing increases up to 9%. The smallest firms — those with less than $200,000 in revenues — were more than twice as likely to see increases of 30% or more in fees than were other firms.
The benchmarking report, conducted every two years, found compensation at most levels flattened out in 2012 as compared to 2010. But, notes the report, that is due to substantial hikes reported in the 2010 report. Partners, who saw their compensation decline in 2010, got bigger paychecks, ranging from 18% at the smallest firms to an average of 7% at the largest firms. Even so, they are still below the average in 2008.
Says the report:
“Director salaries in 2012 averaged $107,193, essentially the same as in 2010. Senior associates earned $56,337, 3% below their 2010 average salary but up 2% from their salary in 2008. Associates earned $45,541, also off 3% from 2010 but up nearly 8% more than their average salary of $42,213 in 2008. New professionals took in $39,487, a 5% drop from 2010 but a 27% increase over 2008. Firms appear to have raised non-partner salaries in 2010 to aid retention but have allowed them to level off in 2012 as they equalize all salaries to pre-recession levels.”
February 14th, 2013
Love is all around us today. And not just in the hearts and flowers and balloons that today festoon countless offices.
CareerBuilder says there’s a pretty good chance some of your co-workers are dating each other. Four in 10 workers have had — or are having — an office romance, according to the company’s annual survey of 4,216 workers. And 30% of them have married an office mate.
For human resource managers, such news is more heartache than heart throb. Read the rest of this entry »
January 31st, 2013
With women now filling six out of ten auditing and accounting jobs in the United States, the American Society of Women Accountants decided it was time to update the organization’s brand and reach out to a new generation of women financial professionals. The organization voted to change its name to Accounting & Financial Women’s Alliance and add the tagline, “Connect. Advance. Lead.” The new name, said the organization, “refreshes our image and resonates better not only with our current members, but also with prospective members and particularly those in younger generations.” Founded in 1938 as a professional group for women accountants, a small, but even then growing number, today the AFWA includes women in a variety of professional financial services jobs. “By contemporizing and broadening the appeal of the organization through a name change, the Accounting & Financial Women’s Alliance is confident it will attract a new generation of women accounting and finance professionals who are in a position to define a new way of thinking in the companies for which they work,” said Lee K. Lowery, CAE, ASWA’s executive director. Accounting & Financial Women’s Alliance