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Preparing for the Future


The future belongs to those who prepare for it. While you may have your own plans in place, it’s important to listen to those around you. Accounting Today released its 2019 Top 100 Most Influential People survey asking, “What one thing would you recommend accountants do to prepare for the future?”

Responses varied, but two key takeaways were repeated – embrace technology and be a life-long learner. When professionals have the right tools and training they need, they are more engaged and will produce better work. According to another survey conducted by Dale Carnegie, companies with engaged employees outperform those without by up to 202%.

Many respondents emphasized the importance of engaging young professionals. A whopping 87% of Millennials say professional development and career growth are significant to them. Given they are the largest generation in the U.S. labor force, supporting up-and-coming accountants is critical in accounting.

Here are a few responses from fellow CaseWare IDEA® users that made the distinguished list:

Kimberly Ellison-Taylor, one of our keynote speakers for the 2020 IDEA User Conference said, “Review the various emerging technologies and choose one to develop advanced knowledge in, and a secondary one to have a little less depth, but be conversant across all of them. I would also recommend at least two hours each work on learning new competencies.”

Jim Bourke, Managing Director of Advisory Services, WithumSmith+Brown encourages accountants to,Change your hiring process and look to bring in team members that look and feel different than the historical hires. In the past you would check the box with an accounting degree. I don’t discount that accounting degree, but instead supplement it with dual majors like those with a focus in technology, artificial intelligence, engineering, etc. It is going to take many different skillsets to service the clients of the future. Firms need to be investing in talent today.”

Chairman and CEO of Marcum LLP, one of the largest public accounting and advisory and services firms in the nation, recommended professionals focus the benefits of developing deep expertise.

“Accounting students should take every technology and critical thinking class they can manage to fit into their schedules. It is the future. Current accounting professionals need to choose an industry vertical to focus on and then get very, very good at it. The days of being a generalist are over. Having deep expertise in the nuances of a specific industry, staying relevant on current developments and trends, and understanding the dynamics of a particular marketplace will make you indispensable to clients in that industry and increase your value many times over.

Alan Anderson, President and Founder, Accountability Plus advised accountants to embrace technology.

“Become technology sponges. Embrace technology and explore avenues that can positively impact what accountants do on a daily basis to help their clients — whether they are internal clients for those in industry or their firm’s clients if in public accounting. Look at technology as a way to unburden the profession from those things that were uninspiring anyway, that can free up time to use our higher-level skills, knowledge and talents.”


Audit , Data Analytics



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By Sarah Palombo
Sarah Palombo founded Avery Public Relations in 2007 and took on Audimation Services as her first client. She has more than 20 years of experience developing communications programs and creating content.


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