From the December 2012 Issue.
Wayne Gretzky’s famous quote on achieving greatness was in “knowing where the puck is going to be,” which allowed him to move in that direction before anyone else. CPA firms are no different and by knowing where the “Accounting IT Puck” could be going in the future, firm owners can more effectively evaluate options and move in directions that make our firms better. In that light of “greatness” we present our 2013 predictions for accounting firms so that owners get a vision of where they should be moving their firms; but first to be fair we’ll recap the results of last year’s slap shot IT predictions!
- 2012 PREDICTION: Majority of Audit Engagements will be performed from remote sites on firm servers rather than on local workstation drives: We have seen significant utilization of WTS/Citrix for remote access and a major increase in the percentage of audits where usable Internet is available to connect from client sites. While this has lead to the majority of OUR clients doing all work remotely, we are hearing that half the firms are still doing work on local C:Drives. Without conclusive survey results, we will have to continue promoting firms expand their remote access, but for honest predictions sake, we’ll have to take a (DRAW) on this one.
- 2012 PREDICTION: Cloud Adoption Leaps: Easy (WIN) as more firms transition to hosted or private clouds for their infrastructure or just for individual applications such as Microsoft Exchange, TR GoFile Room, CCH Saas Document/Portal, and XpiTax CM. This prediction will expand this year as Hybrid clouds become commonplace.
- 2012 PREDICTION: Patent Wars Heat Up in 2012: Another easy (WIN) as the lawsuits and appeals continue to play between Apple and Samsung. Some are waiting for Apple to sue HP on their SpectreONE, but Apple may be skittish as HP has all the original Palm patents in their portfolio which could haunt Apple down the road.
- 2012 PREDICTION: Slow to No Windows 8 Adoption for workstations: Another easy (WIN) as Windows 8 did not even get out until November.
- 2012 PREDICTION: Stabilization on Office 2010/2007: Same easy (WIN) as Office 2012, uh…2013, was not rolled out in time for the major accounting vendors to experience how their products would work. Firm’s need to focus on effectively doing audits and tax work and the Microsoft Office products should always be secondary to that.
- 2012 PREDICTION: Android Leads Smart Phone Platform: While the Apple iPhone5 had an awesome rollout, it was not enough to outdo Android which lead the other quarter’s sales, sometimes by four to one over Apple, so this was another clear (WIN) from the perspective of both US and worldwide sales.
- 2012 PREDICTION: iPad Clear Tablet of Choice: A 2012 Prediction (WIN) as the number of iPads we saw in use in our firms far out strip all other devices in 2012. To be honest, we are not so sure this will be true in the near future as competitive Android and Microsoft tablets get noticed in 2013.
- 2012 PREDICTION: Minimal VDI Adoption: We are claiming another (WIN) on this as we only have one client that has successfully implemented VDI on the desktop while many have piloted it.
- 2012 PREDITION: Video Calling Becomes Commonplace: Commonplace is a BIG word and through the year we saw less than half of the people in our firms using Skype, FaceTime, or other video calling so we are taking a hit (LOSE) on this.
- 2012 PREDICTION: Nationwide Cyber Security Laws: Ouch!, Another (LOSE) prediction as Alabama, Kentucky, New Mexico and South Dakota still have no legislation specifically pertaining to breach notification.
2012 Results: With 7 (WIN), 2 (LOSE), and a (DRAW) prediction, it’s obvious that either our Savant capabilities increased over last year or we did not stretch our predictions enough, so for 2013 we will challenge either hypothesis by predicting it is going to be a great year and that the following ten predictions will lead the best firms that take time to notice and integrate them unparalleled success in 2013!