Using the Ability to Go Remote As a Key Tactic in Your Retention Strategy
Staffing is a big problem in our space right now. That is no news flash, but I am hearing some staggering numbers as it relates to staff turnover in firms. I am hearing 10-20% type numbers…compound this with the difficulty of hiring in the first place, and we are in a real pickle as a profession.
Does the accounting profession’s problem have to be yours?
Because the poor guy/gal down the street can’t make heads and tails of their staffing situation doesn’t mean you have to follow his/her same plight. Who cares if they have a staffing issue; their pain is possibly your gain. For every suffering business, there is another business eating their lunch. Sound dire or cutthroat? I hear too many people buy into what the stats say about them versus determining that they have a say in the matter and realize they are able to steer the ship in another direction.
Don’t Procrastinate When Providing Performance Feedback
Guest Author: Rita Keller
No wonder so many firms are beginning to explore the option of doing away with formal, annual performance sessions with all of their individual team members.
I have observed that many firms can’t seem to get them done within the publicized timeline. Leaders procrastinate. Something else is always more important. So, they think that if they do away with the once-a-year system it will be easier with fewer hassles. Wrong.
Nothing is more important!
We can’t find people… We have had more turnover this year than we have ever had… One of our brightest up-and-comers just left the firm… (more…)
Celebrating 40 Years of Microsoft
Happy 40th Microsoft! We are a Microsoft Gold Certified Solution Provider and have several Microsoft Certified Engineers on staff. Microsoft’s partnership has allowed us to meet our clients’ technology needs and offer an abundant cloud solution to the accounting industry.
Thanks Microsoft for setting an example for innovation and forward-thinking in technology. We hope to follow in your footsteps and have our own 40-year anniversary someday.
CPA Firm Security Briefing
According to the Identity Theft Resource Center (IDTheftCenter.org), as of August 2016, 26 accounting and tax entities have reported security breaches in their organizations which exposed personally identifiable information of employees and clients. This number is most likely only a fraction of the actual accounting entity breaches, but highlights the stark reality that accounting firms and vendors are increasingly becoming targets for computer hackers as tax files contain lucrative personally identifiable information for them to profit from. This is something which firm owners need to consciously understand and take seriously. While management used to push off computer security as the responsibility of the IT department, this is no longer the case as owners have a fiduciary responsibility to protect the information they have been entrusted. Business owners are expected to be aware of the responsibility to ensure client information is protected in today’s digital information-based environment. (more…)
The 2016 Top 100 Most Influential People Results are Here
Our very own Director of Consulting, Roman Kepczyk, has made it onto the list again…for the 11th time to be exact. He has been involved in the accounting profession for over 25 years, being in several different roles, but always leading accountants to stay ahead of their evolving profession.
The Top 100 Most Influential People list is curated by Accounting Today after carefully reviewing hundreds of nominations of people related to the industry. The Top 100 are “the thought leaders, visionaries, regulators, and others who are shaping the profession.” (more…)
Xcentric Leadership on 2016 “20 Under 40” List
Congratulations to our COO, Christian James, and VP of Market Strategy, Roy Keely, for making it on the CPA Practice Advisor’s 20 Under 40 Superstars list for 2016. Every year, the CPA Practice Advisor takes nominations from people within the profession and carefully curate this list based on those nominations. This list consists of leaders under 40 years of age who are seen to have helped advance the profession through their roles in technology, education, consulting and firm development. (more…)
Reducing Audit MUDA (Waste)
“Auditing efficiency” is sometimes viewed as an oxymoron in firms where old processes and familiar habits can trump the potential benefits of today’s technology and standardized firmwide processes, often resulting in a significant amount of wasted time and effort on audit engagements. The Japanese word “MUDA” describes waste as any activity which absorbs resources but creates no value. Looking at your auditing practice from the perspective of waste can provide firm members a fresh perspective, resulting in improved efficiency by eliminating MUDA in its many forms. The Lean Six Sigma consulting discipline has made an art of this by identifying eight specific categories of MUDA which expands on the definition of waste stating: “any action or resource expenditure that does not contribute directly to the goal of creating value should be eliminated to the greatest extent possible.” Below we outline the eight categories of audit MUDA and opportunities where we have seen firms reduce it. (more…)
2016 Talkin’ Cloud 100 List
Last week, Talkin’ Cloud hosted a webinar announcing their pick for the Top 100 Cloud Services Providers (CSPs). This list ranks the world’s Top 100 CSPs, according to Penton’s sixth-annual Talkin’ Cloud 100 report. Take a look at Xcentric’s ranking.
There has been a recent surge of Ransomware attacks on accountants whose workstations were not adequately protected and backed up, leading to some firms paying a ransom and others recreating the data (and wishing they would have paid the ransom instead). For those of you not familiar with Ransomware, it is a term for malicious software that either locks you out of your computer or encrypts certain files on your hard drive and requires an anonymous payment ($200-$300 in BitCoins) to provide an “unlocking” key, so you can once again access your files. CryptoLocker and CryptoWall are two of the most recognized names for this type of malware which is usually invoked by one of your personnel clicking on a “suspect” email attachment that will then deny access to their machine or encrypt all of their Microsoft Office documents, image files, and many other standard file types that they use at work. This includes any that are on mapped network drives that they have access rights to. (more…)