A&A news

A&A

How to Hire the Right Technology Staff

A savvy business owner realizes that having a CPA prepare his complicated tax return is a far better choice than trying to “figure it out” on his own or better yet, hand it off to an employee to figure out. Similarly, CPAs need to realize their need for a strong technology professional to run their networks and implement the strategic technology plan. How you obtain that expertise leads you to a decision to hire or outsource. This decision is based on the size of your firm and the complexity and sophistication of your technology vision.
A&A

Financial Planning Designation May go Global

At its May Board meeting, the Certified Financial Planner Board of Standards (CFP Board) resolved to create a joint task force with representatives of the International CFP Council to develop a proposal for transforming the existing structures of both organizations for the benefit of the global community of CFPTM certificants.
A&A

Financial Services - Avoiding the Ten Traps

Mr. Troy Waugh, CPA, MBA provided this Marketing Moment! A few years ago, one of my clients decided to get into the lucrative business of financial services. After all, financial services companies have been competing with CPAs in the accounting and tax business for years. Partners selected one owner to become the financial services “guru” for the firm. He spent years getting licensed, obtaining a CFP designation and lining up money managers and product sources.
A&A

Fraud Tales - The Case of the Shrinking Margins

When Timothy P. Anglim, CPA, CMA, founder of the Fraud Detectives, accepted an assignment as CFO for a struggling family-owned manufacturer in the early 90's, he expected to find a company that was in need of financial and operational discipline, given its known recent track record of operating deficits. And initially, the assignment focused on upgrading manual financial systems and consolidating several operating entities into one, to improve reporting visibility. Cash flow was negative.
A&A

FASB to Change the Rules of Bookkeeping

It has long been a practice of consumer products companies to pay an up-front fee to retailers for the privilege of having retailers carry their products.
A&A

Find a Back-Up ISP - Protect Your Firm's Connection

Business-interruption insurance can protect you from fires, floods, and other disasters, but are you covered for the loss of your Internet connection? With ISP's shutting their doors around the country, you need to have a back-up plan in place in case your ISP pulls the plug.There are a few insurers that do provide coverage for temporary disruptions in service, but it appears there are no insurers that provide loss coverage when an ISP shuts the doors for good.
A&A

Leading Organizational Change

Today's economy is typified by change, but is this anything new? An ancient Greek philosopher is quoted as having said, "There is nothing permanent except change." And that was thousands of years ago.Change is here to stay, and to survive we must all understand it, embrace it, and learn to use it to our advantage. Your human resources and change management strategies can have a significant impact on the organization's bottom line and you must ensure that your workforce is flexible and responsive in order to meet changes in market and business demands.
A&A

Microsoft Great Plains and SBA Team Up

The U.S. Small Business Administration (SBA) and Microsoft Great Plains are co-sponsoring an online seminar on effective strategies for small companies to do business on the Internet and profit from the global expansion of e-commerce.Representatives from Compaq Computer Corporation, a leading manufacturer of hardware and software, also will be on hand to provide expert advice in this area.The free, 60-minute online conference "How to Put the Internet to Work in Your Business" has been labeled a "Webinar" (short for Web seminar) by its organizers.
A&A

Do You Rise Above the Competition? Quiz Yourself

There are a number of skills and personal characteristics that top accounting services marketing associates share in common. In today's competitive marketplace, you need to do all you can to differentiate yourself in terms of winning new clients. Each question in the following quiz is based on the results of a study of 100 top-producing marketing reps that was conducted during the writing of Building a Profitable Online Accounting Practice by The Accounting Guild in Las Vegas, NV. Answer each question yes or no to determine how well you stand out compared to the competition.
A&A

Video Conferencing Can Improve Service & Collaboration

Over the past few years, interactive videoconferencing tools and video streaming via the Internet and Intranets have helped break down geographic barriers by facilitating interaction with individuals around the globe. Individuals and companies around the world are feeling an increased need to exchange information through engaging and interactive visual presentations.A timesaver and sometimes a lifesaver, videoconferencing and video streaming have addressed the growing need to overcome challenges imposed by time and geography.
A&A

Stop! - Don't Throw Away any 'Junk Mail' From Your Bank

The subject of privacy is receiving considerable public attention today. New federal laws have been passed to help you understand how banks, credit card companies and other financial service providers use and protect your information.
A&A

Top Uses for Application Service Providers - ASPs

ASPs can be used to automate and outsource a wide range of business functions - online buying and selling, supply chain management, customer relationship management, finance management, human resources management, collaboration and messaging, procurement of goods and services… the list goes on.
Practice

CFOs: Golf Is Good For Your Career

Golf isn't just a sport, it's a good career building activity, according to a recent survey of CFOs conducted by Robert Half International Management Resources.Survey responses came from 1,400 CFOs from a stratified random sample of U.S. companies with more than 20 employees.
Technology

Is High-Tech Your Firm's Niche? Survey Says It Should Be

Coming to a city or town near you in 2001!According to a recent survey of state and local economic development agencies, 97% of respondents view attracting high-tech businesses as a top priority in 2001. As the international and U.S.
A&A

Key Highlights of the Bankruptcy Reform Bill

The House of Representatives recently approved legislation to reform the nation's bankruptcy laws, making it harder for debtors to wipe out their debts without paying them off.Below are a few highlights of this law.The bill calls for debtors to complete personal financial management courses before their debts are discharged in bankruptcy; Increase the priority of child-support and alimony payments; Defines what is a realistic amount to pay for food, transportation, hou
A&A

Banks Tightening Lending Terms to Businesses

According to a Federal Reserve survey conducted in January, bank loan officers have continued to tighten their lending terms, particularly to riskier firms. Worried that business borrowers may have a hard time repaying loans with the economy growing so slowly was cited as the main reason for the stricter standards. Over half of the 54 U.S.
A&A

Succession Planning - Ensuring the Future of Your Firm

Structuring clear concise career paths for new recruits and staff is a powerful tool to ensure longevity and growth within your firm. By designing and incorporating a succession plan, you are investing in the firm's future leadership.
A&A

What Should You Do if Your Identity is Stolen?

A recent article on Bankrate.com provides these helpful tips if you suspect you are or have been a victim of identity theft.Here is a step-by-step guide to clearing your good name:Contact the three major credit bureaus. Equifax: (800) 685-1111; Experian: (800) 311-4769; and Trans Union: (800) 888-4213. Ask them to place a fraud alert on your credit report.
A&A

Partners - A Little Disagreement Can Improve Revenues

Do you and your fellow partners agree on almost everything? If so, you could be damaging the bottom line and threatening the very existence of your mid-size CPA firm. Believe it or not, too much consensus - where owners allow the majority to rule or in those rare instances when all owners really do agree - can harm your revenues and damage your ability to interact, plan, and run the firm cooperatively and profitably. How Consensus Can HurtYou may ask, "Aren't partners supposed to agree? What about the 'united we stand' concept?

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