The digital disruption poses significant threats to the Australian economy and will have a profound effect on the accounting industry and, specifically, the role of accountants. This is what Findex Group warned to the accounting profession, noting that the industry is under extreme pressure, with tax and reporting work facing an immediate risk.
Findex Group or Financial Index Wealth Accountants (FIWA) is one of Australia’s leading, independently owned providers of wealth, accounting, estate planning, and risk protection advisory services. It recently acquired the businesses in Australia and New Zealand of Crowe Horwath, the largest provider of practical accounting, audit, tax, business and financial advice to individuals and small and medium businesses.
According to Spiro Paule, chief executive officer of Findex Group, “The focus will shift from compliance to management accounting. The former will become more commoditised or ‘margin thin’, whilst the latter will become the driver of a successful relations as the client and practitioner work together to shape the future of the enterprise or individual in question.”
He also believes that accountants should offer value-added financial services for their clients. “To survive the ‘technology mega-trend provided through the internet, smart devices and applications and cloud computing’, accountants must “take a wider view of their natural domain,” added Paule. But we know that it is challenging to execute your firm’s core business whilst pursuing new opportunities because your accountants are spending more time on compliance-driven tasks rather than higher value activities. Likewise, the risks of failing to meet these demands is also increasing.
One way to help your firm switch back to client-facing services is to outsource your tasks to an offshore back office team and let it take care of the time-consuming, process-driven work. These include preparing financial reports, analyzing and interpreting data, and applying accounting requirements and procedures, among others.
Outsourcing is an efficient and cost-effective way to deal with the digital disruption because you can meet your client obligations while your outsourcing provider helps you in setting your compliance goals and risk management strategy. Your firm must clearly communicate your objectives to your service provider to gain these intended benefits.
The pressure is real and evident, so your accounting firm must act fast enough to change its business model and strategies. If you were to view this as a challenge rather than a threat, you will know that there are growth opportunities that lie within this interruption. So be a proactive accountant and adapt to this change to help your accounting firm remain relevant.
The Outsourced Accountant supports Australian and New Zealand accounting firms by helping them understand and implement outsourcing solutions to help them become more proactive and truly add value to their clients. If you want to know more about outsourcing, call us at 1300 896 522, and download our e-book.