Many accountants go into a death spiral when discussing during an interview why they left or got fired. Newsflash: no one cares. Here is the bottom line, on resume gaps and more. [click to keep reading…]
If you have followed my blog for a while you are aware that I created a LinkedIn group with the same name as my blog titled Advice for Tax Preparers. That group is devoted to the same premise as my blog in that the group provides accounting students and tax professionals the opportunity the learn, share and discuss tips and tricks on how to succeed as a tax preparer in a public accounting firm.
I have now created a new LinkedIn group called Accounting LIONs which goes in a completely different direction. This group solves a big problem for accounting students and accounting professionals who want to expand their accounting and tax professional connections on LinkedIn, but do not know enough people or have the time to do it. [click to keep reading]
As part of my blog Advice for Tax Preparers, I will be adding interviews other tax professionals on their advice, tips, and tricks to make your life as a tax preparer easier and more successful. My intent is to get a wide range of interviews from tax professionals in terms of their experience and part of the country so that you can get an understanding of which issues are common in public accounting firm tax departments versus which issues depend on your situation or part of the country. [click to keep reading…]
Accountants by the nature of our profession want to follow rules. Therefore, we like it when we have guidelines such as an employee handbook that tell us how to respond in an accounting firm to a particular situation. However, new accountants soon find out that the firm grapevine provides unwritten rules to be followed as well.
One example is in the area of the billable hours (the time each person charges to the job for preparing and reviewing the tax return or audit) that a staff should put on his timesheet. If the staff person talks to people in the firm they will get one or more of the following answers: [click to keep reading…]
I recently published an article with several tips to help people pass the CPA exam. (See 4 Tips from a 20 Year CPA to Pass the CPA Exam). One of the tips I mentioned in the article was that they should take a review course for at least auditing, but I believe they should take one for all of the courses. Most of the responses I received on that point were positive, but I had one person ask me why anyone should bother taking a review course. They noted that they had bought a couple of review books and some test questions and done just fine on the CPA exam. I figured that there might be others who felt the same way so I thought I would do a post on the topic. [click to keep reading…]
This is the big one isn’t it?
Most of us get plenty of articles in our inbox and social media from sources such as Accounting Today, CPA Trendlines, Going Concern, AccountingWeb, Journal of Accountancy, etc., on the latest updates in the profession. But we are really only looking for a few things.
- How do I get my first accounting job?
- How do I make my current job easier?
- What do I need to do to get promoted?
- Can I quit and get a better job or move to a better CPA firm?
One of the constant problems for CPA firms with individual clients is getting all of their information in time to prepare, review and file their return before the October 15th deadline no matter how many times they are asked for their information. I once worked at a firm that had an individual client that was the last tax return the firm filed by the October 15th deadline three years in a row.
When clients delay providing their personal tax information until after August 1st, the extra time and expense spent on the tax return can turn a profitable job into a loss for the firm. At a minimum, the client has forced the firm to use “tax season” time to prepare a return that could have been completed in June or July.
In a good economy, the firm might charge the client for the additional time (or use of tax season time) and effort spent on the tax return. But since the economy has been bad for several years, clients have become highly resistant to material price increases. In addition, the economy has caused many clients to see the creation of their tax return as a product rather than a service. Therefore, they simply do not see the difference in which CPA firm prepares their personal tax return. [click to keep reading…]