AccountingWEB Weekly News Wrap-up - Issue 6

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The AccountingWEB Newswire - Issue 6
August 26, 1999

In the headlines this week:

1. AICPA Endorses New Accounting Educational Framework
2. Century Business Services, Inc. Continues To Expand
3. New Mentoring Program For African American Professionals
4. Disaster Plan Reminder
5. Does Your Firm Make It Easy For Job Applicants To Find You?
6. Watch For Possible Y2K Bug In Excel Software
7. Internet Tip: Great Y2K Progress Site

Thank you to those of you who voted in our first-ever online poll for It appears as if the accounting profession is slowly adapting to online banking services, with 1/3 of the respondents indicating they plan on using online services soon, 1/3 indicating they use it to check their balance only, and 1/3 indicating they pay bills online.

AccountingWEB enjoyed its official North American debut as an exhibitor at the Illinois CPA Society's Business & Technology Solutions Show this week. Our thanks to everyone who came out and a warm welcome to all the new members of the AccountingWEB family!

Michael T. Platt
[email protected]

Around the Profession

1. AICPA Endorses New Accounting Educational Framework

The AICPA Board of Directors announced this week that it has endorsed the creation of a new competency framework for accounting education. The new framework proposes a much stronger shift towards personal skills and broad business skills, and places less of a reliance on the pure technical skills which have been the centerpiece of accounting education for decades. The Institute will encourage Universities across the country to re-evaluate their curricula based on the new framework in hopes of building the CPAs of tomorrow to meet the challenges of a dynamically changing business environment. Full story:

2. Century Business Services Continues To Expand

In consolidator news this week . . . Accounting firm consolidator Century Business Services announced this week six new acquisitions of professional service firms, and an increase in line of credit to $250 million to fund their continued expansion. Recently ranked by Accounting Today as the seventh largest accounting firm in the USA, Cbiz has also been chosen by Fortune Magazine as one of the nation's 100 fastest growing companies:

3. New Mentoring Program Helps African American Professionals

The first Internet based mentoring system to help encourage the development of African Americans in top management positions was announced this week by GlobalMECCA, Inc., an organization dedicated to the professional and economic empowerment of African-Americans. Leading executives from high powered Fortune 500 companies are signing on to the mentoring program to offer advice and insight on attaining career goals and business leadership. Mentor programs are being organized specifically for Accounting and Finance positions, among others. If you or any member of your staff would like to register as a mentor or a mentoree, we encourage you to contact:

4. Do You Have A Disaster Plan in Place?

The horrific earthquake in Turkey last week was a natural disaster of biblical proportions. More common disasters – floods, fire, tornadoes – occur daily in the USA, and not only disrupt lives, but also can throw businesses into a spiral that they may not recover from unless they are prepared. Be sure you have a plan in place before you need one. We want to remind you to review your disaster plan, and be prepared for the worse. See the basics of disaster planning in our story this week:

5. Does Your Firm Make It Easy For Job Applicants To Find You?

A report by Creative Good, Inc. released this week indicates that American businesses collectively are losing up to $30 million a day because their recruiting sites on the web don't work right or create a hindrance to the user. If you are doing recruiting on the Web -- and you should be –- check your site to see if it is user friendly. Make sure that your on line form works. Make sure you have no firm-specific abbreviations or jargon that your candidates don't understand. Don't require candidates to register on your site before viewing your listings. And don't set up a form that requires users to download a plug-in before they can access the information. To learn more:

6. Watch For Possible Y2K Bug In Excel Software

Alert: PC Week reports this week that a Boston-based technology management consulting company has found that an Excel year 2000 error causing drastic math errors went undetected by a handful of Y2K analysis tools. The Y2K bug exists because Excel versions through Excel 2000 have a DATE function that treats all two-digit years as 20th-century dates, regardless of how Excel is configured to handle two-digit dates. As a result, spreadsheets that use the DATE function are particularly vulnerable to Y2K problems. Compounding the problem is the fact that most Y2K compliance tools don't catch all possible glitches in Excel. When you check your Excel spreadsheets for Y2K compliance, you need to be careful to check not only their formulas and macros, but also any user-defined names. To correct the problem, you will need to download scanning tools from Microsoft's Y2K Web page:

7. Internet Tip: Great Y2K Progress Report Site
One of the best sites we have found to keep up-to-date on what's happening with the Y2K bug is the CNN web site “Looking at the Y2K Bug.” It looks at many different industries and economic sectors, as well as government agencies and country readiness around the world. The site outlines the most current information available on the state of readiness for the turn of the century. If you have clients who are asking you about Y2K, you should visit and bookmark the CNN site:

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