The GovGrant accountant survey, promoted in association with Accountancy Age, took the temperature of the accounting profession in Autumn 2018. 155 responses from a cross section of accounting practices, corporate accountants, sole traders and others included consultants, government, academics and students, people with an interest in the industry.
Optimism leads over pessimism amongst accountants.
For an industry beset by challenges, this paints a very rosy picture of prospects in the profession.
Key challenges (with the short term exception of Brexit) are all technology-related. Either being replaced by tech, or tech making for commoditisation/ falling prices and a race to the bottom.
Providing value added services will allow accountants to continue to thrive and remain relevant to their clients. Accountants should have more confidence in the role they play in their clients’ business lives and accept the fact that if they want to be treated as trusted business advisers, they need to start moving a bit further out from their comfort zone.
There are opportunities out there right now for accountants to start redefining the services they provide and the interactions they have with their customers. Offering a service to support innovation and R&D tax credits will show clients that there is more to their accountant than they might have expected. It’s an added value service that can directly impact a client’s bottom line and could start to redefine the whole working relationship.