Do You Have Any Change?

From the April/May 2008 Issue

“Nobody likes change except a wet baby!” I’m not really sure where or when I first heard this witty little saying, but it is definitely one of my favorites. Every person on my team here at the magazine has heard it at least 100 times over the past 12 years. And it usually precedes a conversation where we will be discussing new initiatives that are going to require new skills, new ideas and new processes.

The only constant really is change. And in order for a practice or business to be successful today, it will have to embrace change rather than endure it. Continue to be a student, and challenge yourself personally and professionally every year to learn something new. Challenge your staff and your peers to improve on current processes, and be on the lookout for the next technology tool that might help you do more with the hours in your day.

It’s time NOW to plan, strategize and prepare for next year. On his column, Randy advises that you take the time now to have a debriefing session about this past busy season. If you’re considering a new tax system, now’s the time to make the change. Be sure to read our annual review of tax prep suites and specialty tools. NEW this year (yes, a change for us) is the opportunity to gain additional insight into the products by listening to the bonus podcast interviews available at www.CPATechAdvisor.com/your_firm/podcasts/tax.

So many factors contribute to the success of a tax and accounting practice, not the least being your expertise and having motivated and dedicated professional staff. But the technology you use in all areas of your business is vital — even the best professionals are enhanced by software, hardware and services that streamline their workflow.

So how do you find the right solutions? You can start by taking the Productivity Survey at www.CPATechAdvisor.com/productivity and then try our new Document Management Selector Tool at www.CPATechAdvisor.com/dms-survey. Then, check out our special 2008 Who’s Who section to find technology vendors who can give you the tools you need in order to work smarter, not harder.

While you’re in the mindset of embracing change and being on the lookout for innovative and new technologies, several of our columnists provide some insight. Roman and Brent both share about their experiences at the Consumer Electronics Show, which was held earlier this year in Las Vegas, as they had the opportunity to explore new technologies they believe will positively benefit the profession. Meanwhile, Greg writes about new innovations in security and why it’s important for practicing public accountants to be educated about the new green bar certification.

Keeping up with changes in technologies keeps your practice competitive, and you can help your clients do the same. As Lisa notes in her column, sticking with a system just because “it ain’t broken” could mean you or your clients are at a competitive disadvantage when it comes to productivity, efficiency and client service. If you have clients who are contractors or construction professionals, be sure to check out the review of accounting systems for those businesses to see how those clients (and you) can benefit from a system designed specifically for the workflow of such businesses.

“The only constant is change,” and if you’re not embracing and adopting innovative technologies, you’re losing ground to your competitors both in terms of your productivity and the quality of service you provide your clients.

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