Archive for the ‘Stats’ Category

Wednesday, June 5th, 2013

Help Determine How Much CPAs Are Using Social Media

It’s that time of year again. Time for the SocialCPAs annual Social Media Survey. This is the 4th year for the survey.

You will be able to use the survey results to compare your social media efforts to your peers. It should only take you about 10 minutes.

Click here to take the survey.

If you want to see past survey results, you can access them here.

Be sure to visit the SocialCPAs site for interesting and up-to-date information about social media for accounting professionals. Barry MacQuarie does a great job.

I found this hilarious video when I visited recently. This is for those CPAs who are not quite there yet when it comes to paperless!

  • If you don't design your own life plan, chances are you'll fall into someone else's plan. And guess what they have planned for you? Not much.
  • Jim Rohn

Friday, September 7th, 2012

The 2012 Rosenberg Survey Is Now Available

The 2012 version of The Rosenberg Survey is now available.

The MAP survey, ow in its 14th year, reports on the results of 396 firms, most of which range from $2 to $20 million in annual fees. Nearly 100 CPA firm metrics are measured.

I’m anxiously awaiting my hard copy to arrive in the mail. If you want to order yours, you can do so here.

Rosenberg notes that profits, as measured by income per partner, averaged $366,000 compared to $360,000 in 2010. Firms continued to hold expenses tight last year. Coupled with the improved growth rate, equity partner income improved. These tactics enabled firms to enjoy a modest improvement in profits despite the continuance of the recession.

Marc Rosenberg, is that you with Rita?

Read more highlights via Accounting Today.

  • When I was young I thought that money was the most important thing in life; now that I am old I know that it is.
  • Oscar Wilde

Tuesday, July 3rd, 2012

Lack of Communication In An Accounting Firm

It’s summer. Hopefully, inside your CPA firm, people are more relaxed. Many might be away from the office for vacation and continuing education sessions. It’s only natural that you might not be communicating with your team (and with your clients) as much as you do during the first four months of the year.

In the spring, Accountemps released a survey that documented that lack of communication is the TOP management mistake. I hate to say it (not really), but I told you so!

Need some summer reading? Look at the right-side of this blog page at the categories. Click on Communication and scan through all of the blog posts I’ve done that involve communication in CPA firms.

Almost every time I survey a firm’s team members prior to a partner retreat, communication is at the root of most of the problems. Almost every time I get a call from a managing partner who wants to talk about their firm and some challenges they are facing, it involves communication.

Per the Accountemps survey, CFOs were asked, “What one mistake do companies make most in managing their employees?” The response:

  • Lack of communication between staff and management – 41%
  • Lack of recognition and praise – 28%
  • Lack of training, development and other educational opportunities – 11%
  • Lack of flexibility in work schedules – 8%
  • Lack of authority given to employees – 6%
  • Don’t know/No answer – 6%

Many CPA firm team members feel like they are kept in the dark. This causes them to wonder, worry and fret when they see a lot of closed-door activity among the partner group. Partners, when you close your door, the team thinks that you are talking about them. Staff members, when the partners close their door it usually means that they need to talk on the phone to a client or simply need some uninterrupted time.

Proactive communication with your people can take so much of the mystery out of an accounting firm culture. Look at the top two responses, above. Team members simply want to be kept in the loop and feel appreciated.

Firm leaders (see today’s quote below), you can do it! – It’s easy, it’s cheap and it’s also fun.

By the way, this also applies to your clients. Don’t drop the communication ball during the summer months.

  • The day soldiers stop bringing you their problems is the day you have stopped leading them.
  • General Colin Powell

Friday, February 10th, 2012

Inside Public Accounting Annual Benchmarking Survey

Can you believe it? I mean how fast a year flies by? It’s time again to join the more than  400 firms who respond to the IPA Annual Benchmarking Survey.

The 2012 IPA survey is underway and here is where you can get more information.

Participation benefits include:

  • A complimentary copy of the IPA Top 100 firm rankings, along with the detailed financial and operational analysis of the rankings.
  • A complimentary electronic “Executive Summary” of the 2011 IPA National Benchmarking Report
  • Special discount pricing of the 130+ page IPA National Benchmarking Report.
  • Special discount pricing on a customized IPA Financial and Operational Performance Report Card.
  • Preference for selection in articles written by IPA throughout the year.
  • Consideration for being named to the IPA Top 100, IPA Top 200, IPA Best of the Best, IPA All-Stars and the Fastest Growing lists.
  • It's not whether you get knocked down, it's whether you get up.
  • Vince Lombardi

Thursday, September 15th, 2011

The Rosenberg Survey – 2011

Yesterday was the day. A priority mail package arrived for me and I hurriedly ripped it open and exclaimed, “Hooray!”  My husband looked at me strangely (as he often does). You see, he still doesn’t comprehend, after all these years, why the CPA profession is so exciting to me.

Why the joy over the priority mail package? It contained my copy of the 2011 Rosenberg National MAP Survey of CPA Firm Statistics. The survey is compiled each year by Marc Rosenberg (Rosenberg Associates) and Charles Hylan (The Growth Partnership). That’s Charles and Marc on the left.

408 firms participated this year. Here’s the breakdown:

  • 27 firms over $20M in net fees.
  • 64 firms $10-20M in net fees.
  • 246 firms $2-$10M in net fees.
  • 42 firms under $2M in net fees.
  • 29 sole-practitioners.

I hope you participated. If not, I hope you consider doing so next year. Click here to order a copy.

  • Oh! that you could turn your eyes towards the napes of your necks, and make but an interior survey of your good selves.
  • William Shakespeare

Friday, September 9th, 2011

Where Profitable Firms Really Make Money

In a recent blog post by Gary Adamson of Adamson Advisory on his blog, The Managing Partner Advisor, he focuses on two measures where the most profitable firms really make their money.

The two areas are partner to staff leverage and overall net firm billing rate. The top 54 firms in last year’s Rosenberg Survey had a leverage ratio of 7.7 to 1 compared to 4.9 to 1 for all firms in the survey.

Leverage is easy to understand – the fewer partners you have the more you will earn per partner.

When you think about overall net firm billing rate, you might automatically assume that the most profitable firms have the highest billing rates which is not necessarily true.

Check out Adamson’s post to learn more.

  • Money is better than poverty, if only for financial reasons.
  • Woody Allen

Wednesday, March 9th, 2011

The Paperless CPA Firm – Status Report 2011

Roman Kepczyk, one of the most recommended consultants to the CPA profession, has released the results of the Association for Accounting Administration’s Paperless Office Practices Survey.  The survey has been conducted every other year since 2003 to identify digital trends and opportunities for improving firm production.

The survey is available to the members of AAA and highlights were published in CCH Practice Management Forum.  196 firms completed the survey with an average firm size of 55 team members. Here are some highlights of the survey:

  • 63% were scanning at the front-end or at mid-level and completing production of the return on-screen.
  • 72% (up from 32% two years ago) are using software to orgnize and bookmark source documents.
  • 29% of the firms were planning to use OCR technology for the 2011 busy season.
  • 38% are using triple monitors (up from 10% two years ago).  11% are using four.
  • 70% are now tracking due dates electronically via document management software (rather than their practice management software).
  • 73% are using portals for transferring files.
  • 63% are using digital fax systems.
  • 80% are using the dynamic linking between the trial balance and financial reports.
  • 71% are using tax groupings to transfer the data from the trial balance directly to their tax application.
  • 40% of auditors are taking dual monitors out to the client site.
  • 68% have implemented remote-access technology.
  • 10% are providing mobile tablet devices (Net-Books, iPads).
  • 67% are delivering internal firm financial reports electronically.
  • In eliminating paper storage, 70% (up 11%) of firms have implemented a document management application.
  • 52% of firms are using a remote check scanner for making deposits.
  • 46% are backing up their digital files via the Internet.

Lots to think about.  I have found that AAA member firms are some of the most progressive firms nationwide.  They stay in-tune with current trends and implement ideas and tools to effectively and efficiently serve their clients.

  • I don't set trends. I just find out what they are and exploit them.
  • Dick Clark

Tuesday, February 22nd, 2011

ARE YOU RECOMMENDING THE CLOUD TO YOUR CLIENTS?

I recently heard from Hunter Richards, Accounting Market Analyst for Software Advice. Hunter is running a very brief survey on his blog and he needs some input from CPAs.

Accounting firms strongly influence clients’ IT purchases, so their recommendations have real effects on the market. The major firms Hunter interviewed are still hesitant to recommend cloud technology. It mainly boils down to concerns over data integration, customization, cost structures, and IT staffing problems.

Hunter is hosting the survey to find out which of these concerns are most responsible for current doubts from CPAs. Follow the link below to give Software Advice your feedback.

Read more: http://www.softwareadvice.com/articles/accounting/is-the-cloud-ready-yet-lets-ask-the-accountants-1020211/#ixzz1DLIFI61b

My questions/concerns for all of you:  Do the CPAs in your firm know enough about cloud computing to even have the discussion with your clients?  Have your firm leaders educated themselves about how it relates to your own firm (and also how clients might benefit)?

  • Be thou the rainbow in the storms of life. The evening beam that smiles the clouds away, and tints tomorrow with prophetic ray.
  • Lord Byron

Thursday, February 17th, 2011

RESULTS OF 2011 TOP TECHNOLOGY INITIATIVES SURVEY

It’s the 22nd year for the AICPA TTI Survey.  The AICPA Information Technology Membership Section solicited participation from the IT Section membership, CITP Credential holders and a selective group of CPAs.

There is a Complete List, Top Technology Initiatives for Business and Industry and Top Technology Initiatives for Public Accounting.

You can read about it on the Journal of Accountancy site.

The following is from the Complete List:

  • Control and Use of Mobile Devices
  • Information Security
  • Data Retention Policies and Structure
  • Remote Access
  • Staff and Management Training
  • Process Documentation and Improvements
  • Saving and Making Money With Technology
  • Technology Cost Controls
  • Budget Processes
  • Project Management & Deployment of New Technology
  • A telephone survey says that 51 percent of college students drink until they pass out at least once a month. The other 49 percent didn't answer the phone.
  • Craig Kilborn

Tuesday, January 11th, 2011

LAW SCHOOLS IN THE NEWS

An article in Sunday’s NYT caught my eye.

The title of the article:  Is Law School a Losing Game?

The story tells a tale of the difficulty for law firm graduate to find a job.

The reason I am blogging about this is because of the statistics published by law schools to attract students and the fact that CPAs are consumers of lots of stats.

Read the article to find out how law schools determine if a law school graduate is “employed.”

Here’s a quote that sets the tone for the article:

“Enron-type accounting standards have become the norm,” says William Henderson of Indiana University, one of many exasperated law professors who are asking the American Bar Association to overhaul the way law schools assess themselves. “Every time I look at this data, I feel dirty.”

Click on the title link to read the entire story.

  • Statistics are like bikinis. What they reveal is suggestive, but what they conceal is vital.
  • Aaron Levenstein