What’s top of mind for practitioners? You tell us

In Practice is meant to be a forum for practitioner members to share their best practices for navigating the current marketplace.

Welcome to your column. The launch of our new Chartered Professional Accountant (CPA ) magazine is the perfect opportunity to create a space to provide practitioner members with a forum to share experiences and learn from one another. We want to use this space to discuss hot issues, to point out trends and developments you should have on your radar and, most important, to enable an ongoing, peer-to-peer dialogue where you can share insights.

To that end, this column will focus on what is keeping you up at night and how you are dealing with the current business landscape. Constant change, fast-evolving technology, heightened competition, the entry of the next generation workforce and globalization are the hallmarks of the new business reality.

But what do all of these macro issues mean for practices on a day-to-day basis? For example, what role will various technologies play in how you deliver services? How will you attract and retain quality staff? How will you manage the new workforce? How will you stay current with technical knowledge and ever-changing standards? What is the future of assurance services? What will the firms of tomorrow look like and where will the opportunities come from?

We have undertaken a research project to further explore what’s happening on the front lines. Initial findings reveal that attracting, retaining and engaging new CPAs, blending intergenerational workforces and the increasing time and cost of keeping up with ever-changing standards while delivering services profitably are all top of mind issues for practitioners. At the same time assurance services, such as audit and review engagements, are becoming less commonly provided to small and medium-sized enterprises, while compilation and notice to reader engagements are becoming commodities. With that as the backdrop, what will your value proposition to clients be? How will you set yourself apart in this environment?

While we will share our findings in these pages, you are the heart of this column and we want to hear from you. Exploring the issues is one thing. We also want to learn about how you are successfully navigating the marketplace in order to help strengthen the profession overall by providing best practices that can help turn challenges into opportunities in this highly competitive marketplace. We’d love to share your success stories.

We invite you to reach out and share your experiences and insights. Please email me directly at smp@cpacanada.ca. Let’s start the conversation.